Default Virtual Host in Apache

If you have multiple domains installed in a virtual host configuration with one IP address in Apache, the IP address may not resolve to the domain you prefer. Let me explain.

For example, you have the following domains running on an Ubuntu Server with one IP address.

abc.com
cde.com
klm.com
xyz.com

All the domains are resolving as expected on the browser.

However, if you type the IP address on the browser, it only defaults to the first domain found in the /etc/apache2/sites-available directory, which is most likely abc.com.

If you want the IP address to default to another domain, such as klm.com for example, you will need to edit the /etc/apache2/httpd.conf file and add the following entries.

<VirtualHost *:80>
ServerName www.klm.com
ServerAlias klm.com
DocumentRoot /var/www/klm.com/www
</VirtualHost>

Those are the only entries you’ll need. Typing the IP address on the browser will now default to the contents of klm.com. All the other domains are still accessible via domain names on the browser.

What Happens To GoDaddy Expired Domains

If you have a registered domain that is expiring at GoDaddy, to their credit, they do send out several notices to let you know that your domain is expiring. But the day after your domain expires, your domain is no longer working and it gets parked at GoDaddy. Although you make a payment on the same day. It can take anywhere from 2-24 or even 48 hours for the domain to propagate the DNS entry.

So, in the meantime, your website is screwed. Your customers will see a parked page at GoDaddy. If your website is a critical business website, you can potentially lose money. The delay is more of a DNS issue instead of GoDaddy. Even at this age in time, you would think DNS propagation delay can be resolved in minutes instead of days. Unfortunately, we are still stuck in the horse-and-buggy age when it comes DNS management.

But GoDaddy has to do better in protecting business when it comes to downing websites. Although it’s entirely my fault to not properly pay on time, GoDaddy doesn’t give you much grace time when it comes to missing a payment. Although it their right to do this, I don’t think they are winning any customers. I have other domains registered at other registrars. I missed payments by a couple days, but they give you ample of time of at least a week before redirecting your DNS entry. So, your website is never down.

So with that, GoDaddy policies are not winning me over. I will transfer any remaining domains I own out of GoDaddy as soon as I can.

ICANN To Open Up Top Level Domains

ICANN plans to open up generic top level domains next year. Currently, there are only 22 top level domains such as: .com, .net, .org, .gov, .edu, .info, etc. Of course, this list does not include the individual domains for each country such as .uk, .ru, .ch, .mx, and .be to name just a few.

With the new generic top level domain, companies should be able to register their own brand TLDs, promote their products, and foster innovation. We will probably see some pretty awkward looking TLDs sometime next year that resembles more of the following: .apple, .intel, .dell, .ibm, etc.

Somehow, this doesn’t just seem like a valid URL. http://imac.apple

I think it will take some getting used to, seeing all the different odd-looking TLDs in the near future. I just wonder if they will open up TLDs to individuals as well. How much do you think it will cost to get your own TLD?

As a programmer, I already know, there will be thousands of PHP scripts that are going to be broken. They need to be updated if they filter input only with the current TLDs.

It should be interesting year.

Domain Mapping in WordPress 3.0

I’ve been waiting for this plugin or feature to surface to self-hosted WordPress sites. It’s a feature that has been available to WordPress.com users as long as I can remember. With this plugin, you will be able to add a network of blogs with different domains.

For example. Your primary domain is ‘example.com.’ You can create several blogs in a multi-site install of WordPress 3.0 using a different domains like ‘sample.com’ or ‘widgets.com.’

Download the plugin.