Sub-Domain/Domain Hosting?

Dreamhost’s features page says:

“Every domain fully hosted with DreamHost comes with unlimited sub-domains as well! A sub-domain works just like a regular domain in terms of being able to have its own web content and email addresses… the only difference is it takes the form of You can add and configure sub-domains from our web panel.”

My question is if my domain is hosted somewhere else, how many sub-domains can I have?

You can still host as many subdomains as you want at DreamHost even if you’re hosting the main domain somewhere else.

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Ok, thanks!

Correct me if I am wrong, Lesman.

If your domain in not registered in DH, you need to first point DNS to Dreamhost as

After the DNS finishes updating, you need to add the domain via DH panel --> Domains --> Manage Domains --> Add New Domain/Sub-domain

After the domain is hosted in DH, you can then start adding unlimited sub-domains in DH.

I am not sure whether you still can host the sub-domains if you host the main domain elsewhere again.

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I think you are confused about that.

Lensman has pointed out, correctly, that you can host subdomains on DreamHost even if your main domain is hosted somewhere else.

If this is what you are trying to do, you do not want to point your main domain’s DNS to Dreamhost.


Do you mean that I can create sub-domains without pointing the DNS of the main domain to DH?

If the main domain is not hosted or pointed to DH, we will have message like “Can’t add domain: you don’t have permission to add to” rite?

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No, only partially right. You must have the main domain “hosted” (added as a domain in the “Add Domains” section of the panel) in order to then add sub-domains, but there is no need to have that main domain “pointed” (DNS setup at the domain registrar to use the DreamHost nameservers).

Adding the main domain establishea a DNS record on the DreamHost nameserver - which is never “used” if the registrar DNS setting are pointed somewhere else.

However, once that is done, you can then add “hosting” for subdomains (which sets up their entries in the DreamHost DNS servers) and then “point” (modify DNS at the registrar) to the DreamHost nameservers for the subdomains, leaving the main domain DNS pointed wherever it is pointed.

There are numerous posts in these forums about how to do this, as well as an article in the DreamHost wiki, named “Host a subdomain on DreamHost when DNS is controlled elsewhere”. :wink:

Think about it for a minute: When you set up to host a domain on DreamHost that is already hosted somewhere else, you “add hosting” before you transfer the DNS, right? When you do this DreamHost adds DNS records to their nameservers so that when you are ready to transfer the DNS at your registrar, it will be ready to go; if you never do that the site is still served at the old host (wherever the DNS is “ponted”).


Thanks rlparker.

Here is another question.

Let’s say I already created subdomains after I “hosted” the main domain in DH. What happen to the subdomains if I “hosted” the main domain somewhere else? Can I still host them in DH?

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Yes. See the Wiki article I linked in my previous post. Just make sure that you only delete the “hosting” for the main domain in the “Manage Domains” section of the panel, not the domain itself.

It’s the DNS that controls from where a site is served. :wink:


Thank you rlparker. I am clear about it now :stuck_out_tongue:

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You are welcome; this stuff can get confusing! :wink: