Domains, Upgrades

Domains »Setting Custom A Records

If you registered your domain with WordPress.com but you no longer want to blog with us, you can take your domain with you to your new host.

There are several different methods for moving your domain, and you should choose the one recommended by your new host. You may want to check their support site or contact them for more information.

This article will walk you through setting a custom “A” record on your domain. The domain will still be managed by WordPress.com, but it will load your new site at your new host. This method works with hosts such as Tumblr and Squarespace, that do not support other options.

Visit Move Your Domain to Another Host for more options for moving your domain.

Before you begin, make sure you receive the records that would need to be entered from your new host.

Setting a custom A record is only available if you already added a custom domain to your blog.

Changing an A record

Your domain’s settings live in the My Domains page. Every custom domain you added to your blog will have an Edit Domain link next to it.

Click on Edit to open the domain management screen, and then click on Edit DNS on the left to see your DNS records.

Setting a custom A record

Setting a custom A record

By default, your domain’s A record will be set to point to WordPress.com. It will be the first record in the list, under Existing DNS Records. Hover over it with your mouse and click on the pencil icon to edit it.

You will be prompted to confirm that you are sure you want to edit the A record. Read the notice and click on OK if you are ready to proceed.

Your new host should have provided you with the address to point your new domain to. It should be comprised of four sets of numbers separate by periods, for example:

66.155.11.238

Enter the address in the points to field, and click on Add to add it. Confirm that the correct address is shown under Existing DNS Records, and click on Save Changes to make the change live.

The domain will start pointing to your new host immediately after you save your changes. However, most hosts will require you to set up the domain on their end too. Contact your new host for more information about this.

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Resetting a domain A record

To reset your domain’s default A records and make it point to WordPress.com again, simply remove the custom A records you added.

To remove a record, hover over it with the mouse and click on the Trash icon.

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Custom A records and primary domains

On the new screen, click on the IP address under Points to at the top of the page. This will open up an editable field. Leave the “@” symbol in place but change the IP address to match the service where you want to point your domain. Find out the IP address for common services here.

Note: Changes to domain settings (Referred to as “propagation”) can take up to 24-48hrs before the domain begins to function correctly.

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Adding WWW to your domain

If you want your new site to have the “www” subdomain (as in http://www.yourgroovydomain.com), you will need to set a CNAME for that subdomain.

Under “Add New DNS Record,” select CNAME, and put “www” as alias of “yourgroovydomain.com”:

Screen Shot 2014-05-23 at 11.22.54 AM

Click “Add” and “Save Changes.”

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Next Steps

In addition to the domain settings changes outlined in this document, you also will likely need to complete additional steps at your service of choice before the domain begins working. Instructions for common services can be found here:

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