Domain registrar and DNS hosting

Domain registrar is the company who manages domain records. The most important record is NS - name servers. NS records direct to the DNS server where all other domain records are stored. Domain registrar may provide DNS hosting as well as web and email servers.

com.AU domain registrars review

Domain prices per year
Amazon 23
Google 19

Last three provide free dns and website forwarding. Google and Panthur have free email forwarding.Google Domains also has free dnsq - a signature of DNS records for additional security and spam protection. Amazon has everything for the price.

Domain registrar should provide at least Nameservers. That is usually two or better few records called NS directing traffic and emails to the DNS server. Unlike hosting and DNS servers, NS records keeping does not affect website performance although the reputation of the register may affect search ranking. Cheaper domain registers may provide NS records management only. More expensive registers also have DNS servers.

DNS server on the other hand is critical to website hosting, hence it is worth investing a few dollars in a good one.

You may choose the cheapest domain register possible, perhaps saving $5 per year. That is justified by reduced quality of the customer support and security. Since the domain records changed once in a few years, that could be ok.

Some web and blog hosters offer transfer domains to them for free to get you to buy hosting services. Although renewals are never free, third party name servers may not be allowed and transferring away can be costly.

I believe domain management at Google Domains and Amazon Zone 53 are the most easiest and robust.

Amazon charges for DNS hosting per request, that means you pay for every click on your website. Yet, it is free up to a million requests - small businesses should not worry. On the other side, in Jun 2022 Amazon suddenly started charging $40 for Ownership change. Ownership includes registration details such as your phone number or the address.

Google domains does not charge for its basic DNS services yet.

Web hosting diagram, MX, DNS, A records

A website consists of many components, few actors and authority people. Here is the simplified diagram of the web hosting components for the websites and emails on the domain to work. Diagram focuses on hosting and does not include services provided by the internet and the user's computer.


In a nutshell, hosting consists of four services; the domain register, DNS hosting, web and email servers. DNS hosting is the computer where NS, MX and A records direct to the actual data. MX directs to the email server and A record directs to the webpage. Hosting companies usually provide all of these services. But it is not necessary and often better not to have everything in one basket. The reason is that every IT business specialises in its own thing. A cheap hosting usually has all in one control panel such as Cpanel. You may have a website on web hosting for $3 per month and business email on providers such as Google Suite, Yahoo Business Mail or Microsoft 365.

Who owns your website?

In short, domain registration usually is the main point of the ownership. You may think the website is the name you type in the browser such as But reality is more complicated. Domain name is just an alias directed to the actual website. The website is a computer with data on it serving web page visitors with documents such as html, hence the name - web server. Email is a different web service linked to a domain. Apart from email and websites there could be other services on the same domain, like Microsoft Exchange. If you lose control over your domain you lose website and emails. That is why it is important to have a domain registered on your name or responsible executives and have access to the domain control panel as well as hosting and email servers. Often, business owners are not aware and all domain and website controls are concentrated in the hands of a web designer.

4 Oct 2020   Tags:   security