Should I transfer my UK Domain to my hosting company

Should I transfer my UK Domain to my hosting company?
This is a request we get on an almost daily basis, and the following articles gives you some background information on why this is being asked.  We are a leading UK ICANN Registrar and member of Nominet and have been active in the UK Domain industry for more than 10 years.

How the internet works  
First off a bit of background information.  When you type a domain name into a browser  what happens is your browser checks to see what type of domain name you are looking for it knows that UK domain names are all managed by Nominet the UK registry it then goes and asks Nominet for the nameservers on the domain name which they send back.  These nameservers are then used to request your web page.  If the primary nameserver is not available the secondary one is queried an so on.

Here is an overview.

Browser checks the domain type and queries Nominet.

Step 2
Nominet sends back the Nameservers on their database

Step 3
Browser queries nameserver primary first

Step 4
Web hosting provider sends back the web page.  

Step 5
Browser displays the website

Notice that at no point during this process does the domain name registrar become directly involved.  It makes no difference if your domain is registered with your Web hosting company or a third party domain registrar, because at all times the queries are to the Domain Registry which in the case of UK domains is Nominet and never the Domain Registrar.

So why does my web hosting or web designer want my domain name?  
Well the straight answer is that they want the renewal income from the domain name, there is no other explanation for it.  It might be their internal company policy, but there are no technical needs for it.

Are there any risks involved in transferring my domain away?
Nearly all companies we deal with are reputable, but some designers can make life difficult for you, and if they cease to trade that can leave you struggling to get hold and manage your own domain name and company website.

If I am sure that I still want to transfer away what do I need to do?
OK if you are 100% sure then ask your new provider for the IPSTAG, this will be one word in uppercase letters for example ours is DISCOUNTDOMAINS.  You can then enter this online, Login to your account, select Domain Admin, Select Manage, Select move to another registrar, input the new IPSTAG and proceed to checkout.

You charge to transfer away domains why?
We introduced a transfer our charge back in 2003, as customer were being pushed unnecessarily to move their domains away.  A charge deters this and almost always when they go back to their new web hosting company or designer, the agree that all that needs to change are the domain names nameserver settings.  These look a little bit like domain names themselves.  For example ours have the format as follows:-

Primary nameserver
Secondary namserver

There can also be a lot of administrative time taken up with domain transfer particularly international ones.

Nominet Domains

If you have any queries about how Domain names work or to speak to our customer services team then please call us on 01952 288383

Adrian Lawrence is the author of this article and is one of webmasters at Discount Domains

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