posted this on November 15, 2013, 09:19
This tutorial will show you how to point your Hover domain name at your Squarespace 6 hosted website.
There are two general steps that need to be performed to use your domain name with Squarespace:
1) Set up the correct DNS records in your Hover account
2) Link your domain in your Squarespace account
Log into your Squarespace account.
In the Home Menu, click Settings, then click Domains.
Click Link An Existing Domain.
Enter your domain name and click Link.
Copy the unique code that appears.
Visit https://www.hover.com/signin and sign in with your Hover username and password.
Under Domain Details, check your nameservers to make sure they are pointed at ns1.hover.com and ns2.hover.com. If you need help changing your nameservers, click here for a tutorial.
You can use the Edit button on the right and enter the following: ns1.hover.com and ns2.hover.com.
Here you will create two CNAME records: one to point your domain to Squarespace, and the other to verify your domain.
First CNAME Record
In this step, you'll either replace an existing CNAME record, or if you don't see a CNAME record, create a new one.
If you see a CNAME record with www in the Host column, hover over it and click Edit DNS. Replace any text in the box with ext-cust.squarespace.com .
If you don't see CNAME record with www in the Host column, click ADD NEW.
In the Record Type drop-down menu, select CNAME. The names of the boxes will change.
In the Hostname box, enter www.
In the Target Host box, enter ext-cust.squarespace.com .
Ensure the CNAME record matches what's shown below:
Click ADD NEW.
In the Hostname box, paste the unique code from the Domains panel.
In the Target Host box, enter verify.squarespace.com .
Ensure the boxes match the values below (where the Hostname is the unique code you got from your Squarespace Domains panel):
In the Hostname box, enter @.
Leave A in the Record Type drop-down menu.
In the Value box, enter 126.96.36.199 .
Repeat this process three more times and enter these fields in the Value box.
You should have 4 A Records which look exactly like these:
Note: Delete any other A Records. The only A Records in your account should match the A Records listed above.
Return to the Squarespace domains panel. Under your domain name, click Verify Domain to complete the domain mapping process.
Your Hover domain will appear in your Squarespace domains settings immediately after completing this step. Both the www and non-www version of your domain are automatically added.
Note: Domain mapping can take up to three days (72 hours) to take effect. If you see any error messages after following these steps, wait three days and check your domain again.
What if you don't want to force a www at the beginning of the URL?
I second Judson Dunn's comment
Hi Judson and Gregor,
I understand what you're saying and I agree, not everyone wants to force the "www" in their URL. These are the instructions based on the requirements of Squarespace. They no longer provide an IP address that you can use for the blank domain. I'm not sure the reason for their change, but using a CNAME only allows a hosting company to use a bank of rotating IP addresses without requiring you to have to update your DNS records every time they change to a new IP address. I'm only guessing here, but I would think that's how Squarespace 6 is being handled now. Squarespace 5 is still using the same IP address as before, so allows you to point the blank domain to their single static IP instead of having to forward it to the CNAME "www" record.
You could always bring this up with Squarespace as they would likely be able to provide more details as to the way they require people to use custom domains with their services.
Very helpful! Thank you!! Worked great!
changing the name servers is mentioned no where in the squarespace documentation that I saw for this procedure, could that be whats causing my problems?
Hey Olly, you would need to be using our nameservers in order for the DNS record, and the forward, to function. The nameservers determine where the DNS records are pulled.
You'll definitely want to replace them, Olly.
Olly, domains that are transferred to Hover, by default, use the nameservers that were active while at their current provider. These do not change to prevent downtime of services. What most providers do, when a domain transfers out, is shut off the DNS control panel for that domain. This is what you experienced.
There's a slight problem here: Hover doesn't allow 301 redirects between mysite.com --> www.mysite.com, only 302.
If you use squarespace and want to redirect, as above, you're forced to use a 302 redirect.
Hi Guy, I sent you instructions on how to forward your domain. Please feel free to reply to the email if you have any questions or need assistance.
Seconding Guy's comment, I am having issues linking 3rd party services (like verifying my domain with Twitter) on Squarespace.
I can link everything to the Squarespace default (mydomain.squarespace domain) but not my primary domain (wwww.mydomain.com). Squarespace has said this is due to not having a 301 re-direct enabled. If, as guy says Hover don't allow that, is there another option?
Hi Joel, I sent you quick email so we can figure out what would work best in your situation.
Very helpful, Thanks !!
Not sure if best to ask here or Squarespace support, but if I have a domain name (lets assume mydomain.com for this question) through Hover that I'm using in conjunction with my own dedicated server, would I still be able to link a subdomain to Squarespace - for example, mysite.mydomain.com ?
Squarespace's docs say to point the @ record to 188.8.131.52 - but this record is currently pointing to my own dedicated server. Will the mysite CNAME directing to Squarespace still allow for a custom domain to be used?
This is something you'd have to set up on those dedicated servers you are using, so as long as you have the ability to set up these DNS records on those servers, I don't see why this would not work. The use of Squarespace's IP address is the old way of pointing a domain to them. When using Squarespace 6, you would actually point a subdomain to their hosting (typically "www.yourdomain.com" pointing to ext.squarespace.com as a CNAME record). This could be something else (like mysite.yourdomain.com) as long as you set it up that way in Squarespace.
To double check, you could always contact Squarespace as well.
Thanks Blair, I will have a little play-around and see if I can get it working!
Sqaurespace's documents say to add A-records for 184.108.40.206,220.127.116.11, 18.104.22.168 and 22.214.171.124. Do I need to delete the default Hover a-records (126.96.36.199)?
Also, Hover lists the proper CNAME target host for SquareSpace as "ext.squarespace.com" but Squarespace's documents say "ext-cust.squarespace.com." I'm guessing their documents are the ones to follow in that instance.
ext.squarespace.com is part of the old instructions squarespace provided but with the new beta squarespace 7 they mention using ext-cust.squarespace.com.It looks like your website is resolving fine now with ext-cust.squarespace.com. However, I've tested both and it resolves fine either way.
I would also like clarification on Katrina's question: Do I need to delete the default Hover a-records (188.8.131.52)?
Admittedly, Squarespace's instructions are a bit ambiguous on this. They say to delete the * record, but in their screenshots they don't have the default 184.108.40.206 A record, so I'm not sure if that needs to be deleted as well. Their instructions also don't mention the domain forwarding step either.
I've received an answer from Squarespace regarding this:
>>>1. Do you need to delete Hover's default A record 220.127.116.11?<<<You don't need to delete it, but you don't need to keep it either! I would recommend removing it, however, as it lists as the third item in the DNS. There's a potential redirection issue that could occur. If you're hesitant to remove it, I would recommend moving it down the list in your DNS file so that it's the last A record in the list. This will prevent it from taking precedence over our IP's, as the order they're listed in the DNS file is the order they will be attempted when redirecting. If the first doesn't work, then the second is tried, and so on. 2. Do you need to domain forward your domain to the www version? e.g. Do you need to forward domain.com to www.domain.comusing Hover's domain forwarding on the Domain Details page on their siteWe actually prefer that you don't use Domain Forwarding any longer. If you use our CNAME in conjunction with the four A records, you should be a-ok!Here's the guide that explains all the steps you need:http://help7.squarespace.com/guides/domain-mapping-with-hover
Hi James, The default A records, both the blank (@) and the wildcard (*) are the default Hover IP address, 18.104.22.168. The instructions on Squarespace shows you how to set up their service using a "www" CNAME record that points to their hostname: ext.squarespace.com (for Squarespace 6) or ext-cust.squarespace.com (for Squarespace 7 beta). This only points www.yourdomain.com to your website.If you're using Squarespace 6, in order to get your blank domain (yourdomain.com) to also point to your website, the blank (@) A record, pointing to our IP address, must be there. You then go to your "Domain Details" and where it says "Forward this domain to" you would forward your domain to http://www.yourdomain.com.From what I can tell, when using Squaresapce 7 (beta), they have provided you with 4 A records of their own, and in that case, you should delete our default A records (22.214.171.124) and there's no need to set up the Forward on the "Domain Details" page.I wanted to clarify as well, it doesn't matter which order your records are listed, they do not take priority just by being at the top of your DNS zone file in Hover. They show up in the list in the order you add them. A records do not have set priorities.
So everything shows "Correct" but it says ownership is not verified. I made sure the first thing I did was uncheck whoisprivacy. Is there something else I'm missing or will this verification have to take some time?
I apologize for not getting back to you sooner. I've taken a look at your website and it appears that it's working quite well at the moment. Please let me know if you encounter any further issues or if there is anything else we may be able to assist you with.
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