DreamHost DNS overview


DNS, or Domain Name System, provides various records that are looked up and used to make the Internet work. More specifically, it's a system that translates your domain name into an IP address. Your site will have a variety of DNS records for the multiple services it uses. The details in this article provide information regarding some of the records that are applied to your domain at DreamHost.

DNS Flag Day

Feb 1st 2019 is DNS Flag day which you can read about it here:

Please note that your DreamHost DNS settings will continue to function normally after this date. No further adjustments or configurations are necessary.

DreamHost DNS

Viewing your DNS records

You can review all of the DNS records that are set up for any site you host at DreamHost on the Manage Domains page. Under the domain name, click on the 'DNS' link:

The details for each column consist of the DNS record set up for your domain:

Record Type Value
  • Shows the service for this record.
  • For example, if you have a record for the ‘www’ service, the ‘www’ name will be listed under this column.
  • Shows the record type.
  • For the ‘www’ hosting service, you will see ‘A’ here as it would be set up as an ‘A’ record for that service.
  • Shows the value for that record. You will see a different value here depending on the type of record that’s set up
  • For the ‘www’ record, this column will show an IP address to point the ‘www’ record to so that it’s hosted with DreamHost.

This information is very handy if your domain points to non-DreamHost nameservers and you need to configure any or all of these records manually to point to DreamHost services.

If you are using DreamHost hosting services (including parking or a redirect of the site), and your domain is registered with DreamHost, you should use these name servers:

  • ns1.dreamhost.com
  • ns2.dreamhost.com
  • ns3.dreamhost.com

As long as the nameservers are pointing to DreamHost, the records on your domain’s DNS page will be applied to your domain.

Using a domain managed by a third-party registrar

If you want to use domain name that is registered at a third party registrar, you need to update your DNS records to point to DreamHost. You must update the DNS records at your third party registrar (the place where you purchased the domain registration).

Once updated, you can use the domain with any DreamHost hosting services. Visit the following article for instructions on how to do this at your specific registrar:

At your third party registrar, update your nameservers to the DreamHost namservers shown below:

  • ns1.dreamhost.com
  • ns2.dreamhost.com
  • ns3.dreamhost.com

When updating your nameservers at your registrar, you should only have to add the nameserver URL, not the IP. The IPs are listed above just in case your registrar asks for them.

This modification takes about 3–72 hours to propagate across the Internet, after which your new nameservers will direct visitors to your account with DreamHost.

You can track the progress of your DNS update here.

Customizing DNS records

Additionally, you can have your domain’s nameservers pointing to DreamHost, but point your domain’s A records to another web host so that the site is being hosted elsewhere. You can also create custom DNS entries on the ‘DNS’ page for your domain.

View the following article for more information on Custom DNS instructions:

Non-editable DNS records

You’ll notice that there are numerous non-editable DNS records on your domain’s DNS page.

If you need to modify the A record, "www", or "ftp" records for your domain, you will need to remove the web hosting from that domain. This is done by setting the domain to 'DNS Only'. View the following article for instructions on how to do this:

If you do not remove your hosting when adding your custom A records, a DNS conflict will occur as the domain will then point to two locations and will not respond properly.

  • When you remove the web hosting, it will take some time before the change is reflected in the DNS records.
  • You can force the refresh on your domain's edit page, but you can do so once every 12 hours.
  • A typical DNS change will take up to 6 hours to resolve. Changes to the nameservers, however, will take longer. This will often resolve within 3 to 72 hours.

MX records

For information on MX records at DreamHost, view the following article:

See also

Below are some helpful links to outside sources that provide you with further details on various topics discussed on this page. The ‘Tool for looking up DNS records’ page is especially helpful in looking up your domain’s DNS records.



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Article last updated PST.