Monday, January 7, 2013

Pointing your own domain name to a (Blogger) site

Google's instructions on this subject are terribly misleading, and in an attempt to make them comprehensible to the layman make them worse.

Look at this screen shot by Google when you ask for instructions to set up to point to your own blogspot site:

It's incorrect. is NOT a top-level domain. is no different from as far as "levels" are concerned.

90% of the world have the impression that www is something special. "" (it should be "") is a domain, just like "", or "com". Many people have difficulty understanding this, but that's how the Internet domain name system is defined, and works.  Do invest a minute to let this sink in.

The next error: you cannot add two CNAME records to a domain and still be meaningful.  A CNAME record is, like 99.99% of the time, used to create an alias for a domain name.  When we say, lazily, "add a CNAME record for and point it to", we mean create an alias for that resolves to the canonical name  In other words, when someone requests for the IP address of, he is redirected to instead.  He will then have to continue his query to find out the IP address of

After some testing, this is what I discovered.  If you want your domain to point to,what Google needs is as follows:

Go to the Settings page, Publishing, Switch to Advanced settings and enter in the http box.
Click Save and you will be given the name of two CNAME records that you must create.  The two CNAME records are (based on the example in the screenshot):

(Note: you must have the ability to create the domain

Alias to the CNAME
Alias to the CNAME gv-D5HHKMK....thatverylong

If you must have www to cater to people who like to type another four characters to reach a web site, then alias to, ie add a CNAME record to

If your domain registrar allows very long names, then your job is done.  Mine,, spits out that second entry.  I don't know why Google has to make it so long.  A GUID is only 30+ characters.  So I have to resort to another name server, like, to solve my problem.  You have to basically set the name servers for your domain name to the third party provider instead.  Detailed instructions for an 1and1 example can be found here.

A word of caution to those who are trying out a sub-domain of a domain name they already own and whose registrar cannot take long names.  For example is already your active name used by web site and email, and you want to use to point to a site in  If you change the name servers for to in order to add the aliases for and, you will have to duplicate all your current DNS entries at  Not a wise or productive task to do.

In this latest scenario, you should point instead to Blogger.