Domains 101: Exploring the Domain Name System

The WordPress.com Blog

In the past few weeks, we’ve gone over the basics of domain ownership in “Introduction to Custom Domains” and covered the details of domain registration versus website hosting in “Mapping It Out.” In our last segment of Domains 101, let’s delve into the wild world of custom DNS (Domain Name System) records and email. Ready?

What is a DNS record?

Within a single domain name, there is a hierarchy spanning from the TLD — such as .com — to the subdomain — such as, mygroovysite.wordpress.com. Your domain name servers resolve, or connect, to a unique IP address that lets browsers know where to find your site when a visitor types your domain into their address bar. Domain Name System, or DNS, records are similar in that they connect subsets of your domain to the servers on which services, like your email, are hosted.

DNS records live in the DNS Zone. When…

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