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Internic Recommendations

Read on if you are responsible for maintaining your domain name with Internic.

The coder.com web site is housed on a Debian Linux server connected to a dedicated T1 line. This T1 is connected to a network service provider who is connected to Sprintlink.

Our recent experience with attempting to switch DNS IP addresses in a timely fashion prompted me to write this short list of recommendations for dealing with Internic. Following it is commentary from readers.

The Government is in the process of revamping their role and Internic's role in regulating DNS and handing the role to a non-profit, so that Internic may cease to exist in the upcoming months. As long as the current system stands, this information should be relevent.

Recommendation #1: Always use the on-line forms located on the Internic web site: http://www.internic.net/help/templates.html.

Do not rely on copies you have previously saved on your hard-drive, and do not rely solely on forms your ISP gives you.


  1. Internic can change the rules, formatting, or requirements necessary for registering, modifying, and deleting a domain-name, contact, or host-name can change at any time.

  2. Many Web-providers supply their customers with revised Internic forms for them to submit. These forms should, in the least, be checked against the "official" versions on the Internic web site to guarantee that they are correct and the latest version.

Recommendation #2: Unless you are very experienced at submitting these forms via email, use the "Web step-by-step" form on the Internic web site, rather than the text form.


  1. The forms themselves do not contain adequate instructions for filling themselves out. You will probably need to refer to supplemental instructions on the Internic site. The best and perhaps the only complete instructions are found on the Web step-by-step forms.

  2. Use the "Web step-by-step" Domain Name form rather than the Web one-page Domain Name form, unless you are highly experienced with the process. In my experience the one-page form leaves out crucial information.

Recommendation #3: The Internic web-site is inconsistant.

Do not only read the FAQ to answer your question. It may mislead you. Again, look in the Web step-by-step domain form, the Web contact form, and the Web host form. These forms have more correct definitions and suggestions.

Recommendation #4: If you understand how, set your contacts to use encrypted passwords rather than the default authentication method. This is especially important if one contact is acting as Administrative, Technical, Zone, and Billing contact.


  1. If for some reason you cannot receive email at your registered email address, you will not be able to make any Internic changes, without a time-consuming fax-back process.

The coder.com web-site was down for six days in May. This traumatic event could have been completely eliminated if I had known these four recommendations prior to making the necessary changes with Internic. These recommendations may help other website owners to avoid problems with Internic.

Your milage may vary; I am not an expert with networks and if you need an expert's advice you should consult with an expert.

Let me know if you find this document to be useful! -Daniel Allen


From Jesse:

For a proper move which requires changing of the primary DNS server, you transfer primary DNS rights to a server which won't be moving, a week or two in advance. Make sure this server has all the records. Then, on the day of the move, change the DNS records on the primary server to point to the new IPs. When your servers are setup at the new IPs, file a request with internic to change the primary server for your domains back to the original primary servers.

The key here is to have a server which is not moving do the primary DNS. You *cannot* hope for the Internic updates to coincide with the move. EVEN IF they process the change within 3 seconds, it can still take 3-7 days for peoples DNS servers to update the primary DNS address for the domain (whereas, a record for a DNS server updates in as little as a few hours, depending on the record info). Internic can't control how long it takes for other servres to update.

Preparation is the key.

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