Step 7: Domains, Email & DNS

 

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READ THIS FIRST

We are now offering free DNS setups to all members.  You can fill out the form here, and we will take care of everything you need, as well as give you advice along the way:
 
 

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Want to do it yourself?
If, however, you prefer to do it yourself, that's OK too!  Here is an article that will give you the step-by-step breakdown of your options and what to do:
 
 
 
Step 1. first things first:  make sure you add your domain.
    
    no matter what you choose for email, you need to make sure that your domain has been added to your account so we know how to resolve incoming requests for it.  
    
        -> Click the “Settings” button
        -> Click the “Domains” tab
        -> Click “Add a domain”
        -> Type in your URL and click “Save”
        
    This would be a good time to move any existing products you may have already installed on your temporary domain (myaccount.intothedarkroom.me) to your newly added domain, or when you change your DNS, your site won't show up.
    
        -> Click the “My Products”
        -> Click the “Move” icon to the right of the product
        -> Change the Location of the product by using the Domain drop down to select your domain.
        -> Click “Move Now”
        
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Step 2.   tough choices: email. 
 
please choose the statement that best describes your plan of action.  please read each scenario very carefully.
    
    Option 1: I want to make my email experience as seamless as possible.  I currently have email on this domain that is hosted through a shared hosting plan (hostgator/godaddy/bluehost/etc) and it is directly tied to the domain name I want to take live on my membership account.  I know that what this means is I might be paying my original hosting company just for the sole purpose to host my email inbox, but continuity is more important than saving money because my inbox is sacred.  I use desktop email software like mac mail or thunderbird.  I have years and gigabytes worth of emails I don't want to mess with, and the whole changing of the guard of email hosting is too much swallow at this point.  I also realize that this will complicate things like DNS since I will have have two website hosting companies to manage and not all hosting companies are created equally and intothedarkroom can't possibly foresee every compatibility issue.  If intothedarkroom moves my account to a new server with a new IP address, if I do not keep my records up to date, my website may go down for a time.
    
        -> you will not be managing the DNS within the membership site.  you will be keeping your existing hosting and DNS management.  continue to the next step.
    
    Option 2: I have great pride in my email address and account.  I need to know that my outbound email will match my incoming email address, as it's unprofessional to outwardly use a 3rd party email address.  Email is the life-blood of my business and it must always work as perfectly as the internet will allow.  I need a real inbox, with real SMTP information, and real hosting.  I realize that a shared hosting platform that specializes in hosting websites - not email - is a waste of money if that is all I am using it for.  My money is better spent on a dedicated email hosting solution that is divorced from my website hosting and has a dedicated support team if any issues should arise.  I know that this move is going to initially be a hassle, but once I rip the bandaid, I will be forever free of this email mess if I ever need to switch hosts for my website in the future.  Yes, I need to manage and maintain MX records, but I like knowing that I'm paying for a professional service and my email will never go down.
   
        -> sign up for rackspace hosting.  yes, google is cheaper.  yes, zoho is free.  both are incredibly complicated and infuriating to setup.  rackspace is dead simple.  you need a minimum of 5 accounts at $2 per inbox.  it's worth it -- it's what we use.  but we are happy to work with whichever email hosting provider you prefer.  The directions below use rackspace's MX records, but if you chose another provider, they will give you different ones, but the process is the same.

            Rackspace: https://cart.rackspace.com/apps

        -> Now we are going to add MX records HINT: You are going to want to delete any MX records that already exist. You may want to write this info down just in case.
        -> Click the “Settings” button
        -> Click the “Domains” tab
        -> Click on the icon of the 3 grey boxes ("Manage DNS")
        -> Click on the button that reads "Refresh DNS Records from API"
        -> Click ADD MX RECORD to add the 1st MX record
            Domain Name: mx1.emailsrvr.com
            TTL: 3600
            Priority: 10
        -> Click SAVE
        -> 1. Click ADD MX RECORD to add the 2nd MX record
            Domain Name: mx2.emailsrvr.com
            TTL: 3600
            Priority: 20
        -> Click SAVE
        
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 Final steps:  change your DNS
    
    if you have chosen either option #1 or option #3, it's time to change your DNS!  Contact your domain registrar (ie:GoDaddy, HostGator, etc) and have them switch the Name Servers that are found next to your domain in your membership account. See the image below. (Note: the DNS change can take up to 72 hours).  you can see what name servers you need by going here:
    
        -> Click the “Settings” button
        -> Click the “Domains” tab
        -> Click on the icon of the 3 grey boxes ("Manage DNS")
        
    it will say at the top of the page what your primary and secondary name servers will be.
    
    if, however, you have chosen #2, you won't be using our DNS manager to handle your DNS.  what you need to do is contact your current hosting company and/or registrar, and have them change your domain A record to the IP address that corresponds to the server you are hosted on.  login to your account and look at the url, the subdomain will be one of the following.  this is the IP address you need to change your A record to.
    
        lunar: 23.253.147.55
        nemo: 23.253.146.112
        sunset: 23.253.147.64
        icarus: 23.253.147.48
    
    DNS changes can take up to 72 hours to fully propagate.  you can watch it propagate over the internet at this url:
    
        https://www.whatsmydns.net/
        
    when your domain is fully propagated, the ip address should match the ip address of your subdomain above.

       
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