Beginners question

my question might seem silly, but after buying a domain name ( at dreamhost i just can’t redirect it on my site as i usually do with other control panels.
I usually use domain forwarding, it’s very basic: you just have to enter an adress in http://etc… and the domain name just points on it.
I don’t host my site at dreamhost but on a server in France that does not provides to clients adress like “” so i can’t use that system.

Question: Does dreamhost do domain forwarding (with masking) or not?

If not what can i do?
Do i have to “kill” my domain name and buy it somewhere else???

Please help and thank you in advance for your answers and sorry if my question looks basic…

michael from France.

Hi, Michael!

I don’t think it is a silly question at all; I think the Dreamhost panel is great, but the method for pointing a domain you registered at Dreamhost to another host is very hard to find (almost like it’s hidden!).

Not really, at least in the sense that I think you mean. They do let you setup a “redirect” to another url, or a mirror (with or without a frameset), or you can “park” the domain, or yhou can “fully host” it. None of these are probably what you want if you just want to have the domain at Dreamhost but your hosting elsewhere. To do that, you must modify the nameservers that Dreamhost has associated with the domain.

You set the name servers to those the host where the site is hosted, and you do this at the registrar where you registered the domain. So, in your case, you need to set the nameserver settings Dreamhost maintains to point to the DNS servers of your host in France. This is where it is “not intuitive” at Dreamhost, as it doesn’t happen via the Manage Domains section of the panel as you would expect, but through the Domains->Register section of the panel.

When you go to that link, you will see a field to register a domain, and a list of all domains you have currently registered with Dreamhost will be displayed below that. While it does not tell you this anywhere on the page (bad!), the nameserver settings for a domain you have already registered can be changed by clicking on the underlined (linked) name of the domain in the leftmost column.

Doing this will take you to a page for modifying the “whois” information for the domain, and on the lower part of that page, you will see form fields for changing your nameservers.

Just change whatever is there now (probably,, and to the appropriate values for the nameservers of your French host. If you do not know what they are, you should obtain that information from them. Once you have done that, and submitted the form, all you will have to do is wait until the DNS is updated across the net and the domain name will resolve to your host in France. Good Luck!


the problem is that my hosting provider in France does not want to give the DNS. It’s like that, it’s actually provided with my internet connection, freely. The advantage of using this server is that it’s extremelly fast, much faster that any dreamhost or godaddy, comparable to a dedicated server (500k/sec, i have been monotoring these pages for a long time)


If i can’t use the DNS name, you said above that i COULD do “mirroring” or “frame forwarding”, but even that i can’t find!!!

Which one do you think is the best for getting good results in Google?

Thanks again!


I understand. I’m sorry I misunderstood your statement about not having DNS service available from your French host.

I think (hope) I now better understand the problem (though maybe not :wink: ) You set the “mirroring” or “redirecting” from the Control Panel–>Manage Domains screen, where you “add” a domain, and then set up how it is to be configured. If you want to “fully host” a domain, you will need to have a Dreamhost “hosting plan”, but if you only want to “park”, “mirror” or “redirect” to another url, those services are free. Just “add” the domain you registered via the field at the top of the page, select the option you desire (other than fully hosted, and you should be good to go.

Actually, I don’t think any of those options are ideal for Google, but if I had to go that route, I would choose the “redirect” over the mirror, as there can be Google penalties for anything they interpret to be “cloaking”.


thanks again for your answer.
the problem is that i get a sort of bug:

when i click on “add a domain/subdomain” it tells me that i have no plans on this account, and if i go further (add a plan) it wants me to pay. I can’t find this redirection thing, it’s like a something is going wrong…

Here is what i get:

Your Account Provides:

0 MB Disk (Grows 0 MB / week)
Used: 0 MB (NA% - Overage $.10/MB)
0 GB BW per Cycle (Grows 0 GB / week)
Used this Cycle: 0.0 GB (NA% - Overage: $0/GB)

This account has no hosting plans… add a plan to “open” it.

[merge to another account] [create an entirely new account]

Plans (0)

(Plan) Cost
Period Started Paid Thru
(End Date) Edit
You currently have no plans on this account.

[add a plan]

Users (0 / 0)

Name Username Type Server Disk Edit
You currently have no users on this account.

[add a user]

Mailboxes (0 / 0)

Name Mailbox Disk Usage Edit
You currently have no mailboxes on this account.

[add a mailbox]

Domains Hosted (1 / 0 domains, 0 / 0 sub-domains)

Domain Hosting Bandwidth Usage Edit CLOAKED 0.00 GB [edit]

[host another domain]

Domains Registered (1, 0 free)

Domain Standard Cost Expires Renew? Edit $9.95/year 2007-10-03 13:54:55 ask [edit]

[register another domain]

Databases (0)

Database Hostname Disk Usage Edit
You currently have no databases on this account.

[add a database]

PS: I did buy a plan 3 weeks ago, but i got refunded, found the server much too slow for 1200pix pics size H264 movies…

Ah! I see…yep…I think you will need to contact support to arrange to get the “free” services that come with Domain Registration Only.

This is probably because, since you initially had a plan (which came with a “free” domain"), but then got the “plan” refunded (and, I assume, still had to pay for the domain) the system does not recognize it as a “registration only” set-up.

I suspect that is why the “bug” won’t let you manage the “free” services that come with the domain registration - having been originally set-up for a “plan” that no longer exists.

Sorry I was so “slow” in understanding your situation (though it now makes more sense, knowing the history of the account).

I think if you contact support they should be able to set you up. Good Luck!


thanks a lot.
You are really nice!