Tag Archives: Domains

.Tel Standardises Domain Use But Nukes Existing Sites

.tel Logo

.tel Logo

There is mini earth quake about to hit the .Tel world, Telnic (.Tel Registry) is removing the restrictions placed on how the .tel domains can be used. More importantly how they are hosted. Currently, all .Tel domain names must point towards a pseudo-website created on Telnic’s platform.

I say platform but its actually just data stored within DNS, so its limited, it has been enhanced since its launch, but its not quite complete.

An example would be Justin.Tel which is using a fairly advanced template. 

I have a few .TEL domains, mostly pronouns and not really keywords or usable names. The one I still use is Morley.TEL. I use it for my family and my own mobile phone email addresses since it originally included contact details on sub domains. steven.morley.tel / mother.morley.tel along with matching email addresses. I moved from the original registrar over to the current one and it wiped out the sites and I never bothered to rebuild. 

I didn’t rebuild because its not effective to use such names. Much like when I owned steve.co and morley.co, almost without exception everyone asks me if I mean morleyco.com or morley.co.uk or something else. I remember buying a 6-series Samsung TV to use for output when editing video in Adobe Premier. I gave the email to John Lewis for a purchase over the phone while stood outside Currys, and they listed it as morleytel.com on the invoice. Perfect example of what happens.

.Tel Game Changer

The .Tel game anger is due on 17th March 2017, at this point .Tel owners will be able to use their .tel domains just like any other domain by pointing to any hosting account, using normal pop/imap mail even google apps / wordpress if they so wish. 

Telnic are retaining the option for customers to create the standard and familiar contact pages instead of buying and using your own hosting. Its not all good news though, this massive overhaul means the current system is being resigned to the scrap heap and all existing sites will be erased from existence. 

There are going to be tools to export existing data and recreated it on the new platform, but its not going to be as flexible as the existing platform. The big change will be, the new system will not support sub-domains. Many people have built directory sites on .tel which suited it perfectly. Many of these used sub-domains RepairMen for example, which now face moving to a hosted platform to recreate the sites which will be a huge task. 

Its Not All Doom and Gloom

Its not all gloom for those people, the new platform will go live on 13th February allowing people a shade over a month to test the new platform, work out their next step or source and prepare hosting. Its not perfect but its a bonus and hopefully should be a smooth transition.It

Customer Support will now be provided by Telnic directly too, this is a big one. Its hard work getting support from your registrar on .Tels, most don’t have a clue. The only thing harder than help with .Tels is getting .uk support from GoDaddy. You near enough have to tell them UK really exists, its not like Narnia, and We’re an ally, member of Nato and a country with nearly 11 million domains registered.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Nominet Zone File Released

The ZoneFile (ZF) from Nominet has been released, it also appears nominet have gone for “zonefile 2.0” by including domain names without name servers assigned, in the form of a database dump in addition to the zone files for all the Nominet controlled second level extensions (.net|org|me|plc|ltd|co.uk).

Nominet Zone Files

Nominet Zone Files

I believe the zone access is available to Nominet Members only, and like other zone files it includes only the domains, and name servers. You can access it by going to your account, and then under “Account Settings” there is an option to sign up to zone file file access. You have to agree to about 29593 pages of small print, but as a member you would already be aware of the basic rules so they need only a speed read.

Historic Records

What is interesting is, Nominet appear to keeping historic copies, its not know exactly how many days, weeks or even indefinitely worth of records. Which means Diffs and other comparisons between snapshots can be made.

The other main use for this data is if you wished to build a drop list from it, or some other application you would need to be a member with DAC access, not to mention able to write the relatively simple application to query the dac, and build a database.

Such an app is as simple as preparing and opening a socket, connect to Nominets DAC (Domain Availability Checker), send your string, read the reply, parse the domains 1 by 1 within the quota (432,000 per day, would take approx 25 days to scan whole zone), then write the result to the database, then search said database.

There are a bunch of rules surrounding data retention and distribution; I think these rules maybe due for a review given the release of the NZF. For now there are kind of controlling rules.

 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Nominet to Release Zone File in May 2016

Nominet (the body which operates the .UK family of domain names) has decided to finally release a zone file for the .UK registry in line with most other registries. This appears to be a continuation of Nominets moves to align with ICANN.

For those who don’t know what a zone file is, its a list of every registered domain name under the .TLD (Top Level Domain) which in this case is .UK, so it should include third level .co.uk, .org.uk, .met.uk, .ltd.uk, .plc.uk, .net.uk and finally the second level .uk.

Why so important ?
Well, if you are a copyright holder, and want to see if people are abusing your copyright, a zone file allows you to quickly search for your string and spot any offenders.

More useful in my context and likely yours, is that it makes Drop Lists (a list of each days soon to be released domains) complete. The last time a Zone File were available, were around 2004/2005 which contains approx 2,000,000 names and averages around 800-1,400 drops per day.

Currently, I believe the largest databases out there are around 8.5 million names, which leaves a short fall of 2,000,000 names unaccounted.  On the 8.5m lists, there are around 3,000-4,000 domains per day released, so the amount missing could be 10,000 extra per week. Don’t think these are all heading to drop lists, lots will be renewed.

It could be easier than ever to find the perfect domain name from may onwards

Its not clear yet…
Its not 100% clear, what exactly Nominet are classing as the zone file. Historically, they have protected the zone file data as their IP (Intellectual Property), so its not clear how much they will release.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.