What Is a Nameserver and Why Is It Important?

What Is a Nameserver and Why Is It Important?

What Is a Nameserver and Why Is It Important?

Nameservers are an essential component of a massive database called the Domain Name System (DNS). They work as a directory that translates human-readable words (domain names) into computer-readable numbers (IP addresses). 

Think of it as the contact list on your phone. Instead of memorizing phone numbers, you assign a name to a number. Nameservers work the same way where it assigns an IP address to a domain name, so you only have to remember the domain name instead of the IP address. 

When you type a domain name in the address bar of your web browser, the domain name hits the nameserver, which translates it into an IP address so your browser can locate it. Once the browser finds the domain name in the nameserver, your browser uses the IP address to connect to the server and display the site. The process occurs within a matter of seconds and is unnoticeable.   

Without nameservers, you need to type a lengthy IP address into the address bar to visit a website. 

Nameservers and Domain Name System: How They Work 

Domain Name System (DNS) records and nameservers work together but are two different things. DNS holds the information about which IP addresses match which domains, while nameservers store and organize each DNS record. 

When you enter any website’s address into the URL address bar, your browser uses DNS to obtain the nameservers for the domain.  

Nameservers and DNS records help: 

  • Point your domain name toward your hosting 
  • Set up your email account 
  • Verify your domain name with Google Search Console 

How To Manage Your DNS Records Through Your Nameservers 

How and where you manage your DNS records depends on where you host your DNS. 

For example, if you use nameservers from BigRock, you will modify or manage your DNS records from the BigRock domain dashboard. 

Nameserver-1

Where to Locate Your Domain’s Nameservers 

When you register a domain through a domain registrar, it will have your registrar’s nameserver information associated with it.  

 However, there are instances where you need to register a custom nameserver. Here are a few benefits to registering your nameserver: 

  • It establishes your business as an independent brand, as custom nameservers are associated with your domain instead of a web hosting company 
  • It builds trust by increasing a sense of security among your consumers 
  • It makes it easier to switch hosting providers 

 How to Check Your Website’s Nameserver 

There are many ways to determine which Nameservers you currently use. 

Using WHOIS Lookup Tool 

A WHOIS lookup tool is one quick approach to finding out which nameserver your website uses. 

In the search field, enter your domain name, and then hit the Search icon. Your domain information should look like this: 

Whois Lookup

 

Using System Console 

Another way is to use the command prompt on Windows, macOS, or Linux. 

Windows 

You can check the nameserver on Windows using the nameserver lookup or nslookup. Here’s how: 

  1. On your keyboard, press Windows + R. Type cmd and hit Ok. 
  2. In the command prompt window, enter the following command: nslookup -type=ns yourdomainname.com 

Linux 

Follow these easy steps to check your nameserver on Linux: 

  1. On your keyboard, press CTRL + ALT + T. 
  2. In the command prompt window, enter the following command: dig ns yourdomainname.com 

Linux 

Here’s what you need to do if you’re using macOS: 

1. On your keyboard, press the F4 key. 

Nameserver

2. In the macOS Launchpad, type “terminal” into the search bar and hit Enter. 

3. Enter the following command: dig ns yourdomainname.com 

How to Change Nameservers for Your Domain Name 

Changing your nameserver is simple and easy. The process may differ depending on your domain name registrar, but the basic steps are the same. 

Here’s what you need to do: 

  1. Get in touch with your hosting provider and ask for the nameservers you need to use.  
  2. Log in to your domain registrar and replace the domain’s old nameservers with new ones. 
  3. Once the nameservers are updated, you need to wait for the changes to take effect. 

If you’ve purchased web hosting for your domain through BigRock, you need to set the nameservers as specified here. 

Conclusion 

Nameservers help in steering traffic to your website by connecting your domain name and your web server’s IP address.  

 You can check, modify, and manage your domain’s nameservers at the domain registrar where you purchased your domain name. For instance, if you bought your domain name from BigRock, you could manage your nameservers & DNS records by signing in to the control panel and opening Name Servers’ services. 

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