Setting up a custom subdomain for a site hosted elsewhere


Hey All,

I’m making the transition from Tumblr to Wordpress and need to prep a Wordpress install to function in the same manner: mainly (which currently points to the Tumblr).

I do NOT want to transfer the hosting of the main domain (it being a large-scale production environment) to Dreamhost in order to make this happen. That said, I need to install, prep, CSS-ify, and then host a Wordpress blog on Dreamhost that when I’m ready to go live, replaces the Tumblr at “”. I also need to be able to keep said blog on a staging URL until it’s ready for go-live so I can tinker with / prep it prior to migrating away from Tumblr.

Any tips on how to make this happen without actually transferring the hosting of the main domain or installing Wordpress on the main domain? Neither are viable options.



Thanks for the tip on setting up a staging environment.

Still not sure about this though:
How do I configure Dreamhost to host a Wordpress with a custom subdomain of a domain hosted elsewhere?

i.e. My site hosted elsewhere is and I want to be the url in question for the Wordpress install on Dreamhost, such that typing will direct a visitor to the Wordpress blog.


Assuming that has it’s nameservers pointed elsewhere (i.e. NOT to then you would go ahead and add as fully hosted via the dreamhost panel.
Use the instructions in the links above to create a mirror of the site, so that you can see it and work on it etc.
When you are ready to go live, you would go to “Manage domains” in the panel, find and click the DNS link right underneath. After the page reloads, scroll down and look for “Non-editable DreamHost DNS records for” The first record there should be an A record, with an IP address. Copy that IP address. Next go log in whereever the domains DNS is managed and make an entry that points to the IP address at dreamhost.

Remember that since dreamhost is not managing the DNS that you will need to manually update the IP address should it ever change. (which would be rare, but could happen)

As an after thought, I’ll also add that by giving us the real domain name, instead of an example, you get a better custom baked answer to your question. I had to make an assumption above, if it turns out dreamhost IS managing the DNS for the domain the answer is different. If I had know the real domain name I could have look that up, and looked at how it’s currently configured before I started typing.