Troubleshooting DNS issues

    Accessing DNS tools

    In the Admin Console, select Site Settings > Site Domains  to access the DNS management tools.

    Site Domains.png

    Using the interface provided on this page, you can add the domain name you've registered (with a third-party registrar) to your site and set up your domain name (or set up A-Records on the external DNS server to point to a remote server IP address), based on your site's location and the data center you've selected. These changes can only be made after first performing the following task:

    Double-check that you have completed this step first, and then follow the instructions provided in Setting up DNS and redelegating domain names to redelegate your domain name, (using the website of the registrar company who  registered your domain name). Finally, you'll use the DNS management tools in the Admin Console (as shown above) to set up your site's domain name.

    Allowing time for propogation

    Be aware that you may need to wait for the  changes to propagate before updates made to a domain name become effective.  Once the domain name has been redelegated to new name servers, it can  take up to a maximum of 7 days for this new domain information to update  on all relevant DNS servers throughout the world. Usually, this process  happens much faster; often, a visitor that enters your domain name into a browser will be  able to successfully access your hosted site within 24-48 hours. If you wait for two days and find that the changes are still not active, use the suggestions provided in this article to resolve any outstanding issues.

    Verifying your domain name settings in the Admin Console

    As mentioned above, log into the Admin Console for your site and select Site Settings > Site Domains  to access this system's DNS tools. The list of host names that are set up for your site are displayed on this page, as shown below:


    Note: The screenshot above has been edited for space; the Admin Console interface for host names also displays the Country (data center location) and Culture (system language) settings.

    Click the Edit button to the right of the item you want to update. Make sure that you have added the correct domain name to the site (and verify that the domain name does not contain any misspellings).

    Also confirm that you selected the option "I will re-delegate my domain and use this service to host it" if you are redelegating your domain to this service, which is required in order to use the internal email service. If you choose to host your site with an external host provider, you cannot use the internal email service. However, it is possible to add multiple domain names to a single site, and set one of the secondary (the non-default hosting domain) as an email domain and use an external email provider for that secondary domain name.


    Use the WWW record options menu to forward the domain name to the WWW domain record (the default option). This will ensure that a visitor entering the address will access the same site as if the visitor entered in their browser's address field.

    The Default URL option  sets the (with your domain name replacing my_domain_name) as the default setting; If you enable this option, you are setting the primary domain address that will be used in your site (such as the links in the Sitemap.xml, system emails, and RSS feeds).

    The Default Email Domain option sets the current domain name that you are setting up as the default domain name for your email service. This means that the internal email service will generate email addresses like this:

    Using different domain names for the hosting and email services

    This system enables you to set up multiple domain names for the same site, so you can optionally choose to set a secondary domain name (which differs from the site's default domain URL) as the default domain for email services. If you want to set this up, do not enable this option for the site's primary (default) domain name, but do enable it when you set up the secondary domain name, so that it will be set as the primary (default) domain for email accounts. 

    For example, it is possible to set up the default site hosting domain to be and set up the default email domain as To learn more about this, see Setting up your site's domain name using DNS tools

    Looking up your domain name with online tools

    First, confirm that you have performed the steps outlined below:

    1. Upgrade your site.
    2. Purchase and register a domain name with a third-party registrar.
    3. Use their site to assign the DNS information.
    4. Use the Admin Console (Site Settings > Site Domains) to add the domain to your site.
    5. Wait 24-48 hours for the changes to propagate to the remote servers.

    Next, use an online DNS lookup resource, such as DNSWatch, to use their reporting tools to lookup the information about your domain name. Follow these steps:

    1. Visit  the DNSWatch site and enter your domain name into the Hostname field. (Do not enter www before typing your domain name, as shown below.) Click Resolve.          

    2. If you see different DNS server URLs, (other than,, and it means that your domain name has not been redelegated properly to this system's servers, or that you have selected the option to use an external DNS service.

         Note: To learn more about using a third-party system to manage your site's DNS, see Using an  external DNS service for domain names.
    3. Next, check the report to verify the MX record information. If you have selected to use this service for your email services, your MX record will look like this:          (in this example, your domain name replaces 

    4. Select Site Settings > Site Domains  to access the interface where you can set up your domain name and add a Mail Exchanger (MX Record). If you are using the internal service for your site's email service, be sure you've selected the option "I will re-delegate my domain and use this service to host it" as shown below:          

    5. Next, check the report to verify the A-Records. If things are set up correctly, you'll see two A-Records.          

      One will be a www record and one will be a non-www record, as shown below:          


    If the MX record is not listed in the report, return to the Admin Console to enter the correct settings. Follow these steps:
    Both A-Records should be pointing to the internal DNS information, shown below: 
    • ( - primary DNS server   
    • ( - secondary DNS server 
    • (

    This information will be same if you have redelegated your domain name or if you are using an external DNS service. In either case, you should see that the two records are pointed to the correct set of IP addresses shown above.

    If these A-records do not exist when you check your domain name using a third-party DNS lookup tool, log into your Admin Console and select Site Settings > Site Domains to set up your site's domain name. If only one A-Record exists, or if one or both A-Records are pointing to an address different from those listed above, it means you've selected the option to use an external DNS service and that you still need to setup one or both of the A-Records manually, using the DNS management tools.

    Looking up your domain name with

    In addition to, you can also use the service to lookup your domain name and ensure it is set up correctly. Follow these steps:

    1. Visit and enter your domain name into the Enter domain field:           

    2. Press Next to generate the results. On the results page, scroll down and verify the name servers. You should see either two (or possibly three) name servers as shown below if you have redelegated your domain name to the Business Catalyst DNS service:          


      If you are using an external DNS service, you will see different DNS URLs when the record is displayed.