This article explains how to change the name of your WordPress site to a different domain name. These instructions can be used for a regular domain name like example.com or a temporary domain like example.dreamhosters.com.
Your website content will not be touched during this process and the site will continue to function normally after this change.
You can use the domain name changer on the Websites page to change any temporary domain, not just dreamhosters.com subdomains.
Ensure the following before proceeding:
- Make sure you have a DreamHost WordPress install — The website renamer feature only works with DreamHost WordPress installs. Confirm that the domain name you are changing FROM is a DreamHost WordPress install. If it isn't, you can move the site manually or contact support to have it converted.
- Make sure your WordPress installation isn't in a subdirectory — Subdirectory DreamHost WordPress installs, such as example.com/blog, will not work with the website renamer. You can still move the site manually or contact support to have the install moved to the site's root directory.
- Remove custom DNS — Make sure there are no Custom DNS A or CNAME records on the domain you are changing TO (if any exist that point to a different web host). If there are, delete the custom records. Other Custom DNS records are fine to leave in place.
Step 1 — Changing your domain
To change the WordPress domain:
- Navigate to the Manage Websites page.
- Click the Manage button to open the Domain Settings page, which allows you to adjust various settings for your site.
- Scroll down to the Domain section of the page.
- Click the link under Domain Name.
- Select a domain. You have two options to change the name:
Choose an Existing Domain
- A checkbox appears asking you to confirm that any previous backups from the old domain name will be removed.
Enter a New Domain
- A checkbox may appear, asking you to confirm that the domain is not registered with DreamHost and you will need to update the DNS.
- Click the Change Domain button.
- It takes 4-6 hours for the DNS to update for your new domain at DreamHost.
Step 2 — Waiting for your DreamHost DNS to update
As stated above, it can take 4-6 hours for the DNS to update at DreamHost. If you point your DNS at your current host to DreamHost before the DNS has updated on DreamHost's servers, the site will not connect.
It's recommended that you wait 4-6 hours before updating your DNS at your current host.