One thing I often do as an Irish web designer and developer is purchase domain and hosting for a new client site. When buying .ie domains I generally go with Blacknight domain registrars. You will pay around €50 for a two years ownership of the name. There are probably some cheaper options for .ie domain but that’s around about the current going rate for them.
A lot of clients nowadays want some form of control over their site where they themselves can make updates to the site. Because of this we spend a lot of time creating WordPress sites, WordPress being the most popular content management system in the world today. In essence it allows clients to update aspects of their site without needing to possess any web design skills.
You will need to host your WordPress site once its ready. In layman’s terms a host is where your site lives. In order for people to be able to access your site it will need to be hosted on computer (known as a server) that is connected to the web 24/7 and that can handle a large amount of visitor requests. This service of course is not free and this is why we pay for hosting. At the moment we use Bluehost. In truth they don’t have a stellar reputation, in spite of it being officially endorsed by WordPress themselves. But to be fair we’ve never had any issues with them, and if you’re creating relatively simple WordPress sites then it really is hard to beat their price. You will pay around €2 a month for the 2 year deal. A lot of clients running small businesses these days can be very reluctant to spend their company’s money on a new web site so if you can save them money with domain and hosting costs then all the better.
Linking your Blacknight Domain to your Bluehost host
Once you have set up your domain and hosting, you will need to link both of them. It’s actually a very simple process but there is little info out there on how to do it (hence this blog post!). We need to do this because of how the internet actually uses a url to find exactly where in the world your site is being hosted. It does this by looking through something called domain name servers. These are special servers that contain a list of url domain names and their corresponding unique host IP address. Once it knows where the files are hosted it can go off and request the web site files from that host server.
So if all that makes sense to you(!), you will understand the problem we have here in that our domain name knows nothing of our hosts location. Thankfully there is a one step solution to this, i.e. change the specified domain name servers in your Blacknight domain’s account settings. By default they will be set to Blacknights name servers. However as we know our web site is not hosted by Blacknight, but on Bluehost. So what we need to do is change these name server settings to Bluehost’s name servers. What we are essentially doing here is saying, if your browser requests our web site, go to this name server to find out where the web sites files are located.
The Bluehost name servers are:
(why are there two? basically so they can share the load)
Changing the Blacknight nameservers for your domain:
Step 1: Log into your Blacknight account
Step 2: Click on Account Link along the top
Step 3: Click on Registered Domains link (currently at bottom of page)
Step 4: Click on the domain name you wish to make changes to
Step 5: Click on the Manage Name Server Button
Step 6: Change your names server to Bluehost (See image below)
That’s it! It can take up to 24 hours for the change to be recognised so if you are in a rush make sure to do this step as early as possible to avoid frustration.