DNS Made Simple – version 2

David Ashurst Design - Website Hosting development The A and CNAME records are the two common ways to map an host name (name hereafter) to one or more IP address. Before going ahead, it’s important that you really understand the differences between these two records. I’ll keep it simple.

  • The A record points a name to a specific IP. For example, if you want the name blog.dnsimple.com to point to the server you will configure blog.dnsimple.com  –  A
  • The CNAME record points a name to another name, instead of an IP. The CNAME source represents an alias for the target name and inherits its entire resolution chain. Let’s take our blog as example:
    blog.dnsimple.com.   –  CNAME  aetrion.github.io.
    aetrion.github.io.   –  CNAME  github.map.fastly.net.
    github.map.fastly.net   –  A
  • We use GitHub Pages and we set blog.dnsimple.com as a CNAME of aetrion.github.io, which in turns is itself a CNAME of github.map.fastly.net, which is an A record pointing to In short terms, this means that blog.dnsimple.com resolves to

To summarize, an A record points a name to an IP. CNAME record can point a name to another CNAME or an A record.

Website references


Website Design and Development toolbox – DNS Made Simple – version 2, by professional Graphic Designer and Website Designer. David Ashurst Design, Springwood QLD 4127

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