FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions regarding Domains

Jump to a Catagory:

1) General Information regarding Domains

2) Purchases, Transfers, and Renewals

3) Legal and Technical issues

4) Picking a Name

5) Managing your Domain

6) Billing

7) Special Features


General Information regarding Domains

WHAT IS A DOMAIN NAME: A Domain Name is your permanent name on the web. It is the URL (address) that people type in, or sites link to, to load your web site. It is unique - no 2 people can own the same Domain Name. To have your Domain Name visible online, you must design a web site, and have it "hosted". The job of the Domain Registrar is to make sure that your "owned name" points to the connection address of the host computers. This is how your web site is displayed to the public using your domain name, no matter what system you host your site on.

WHAT MAKES THE ULTIHOST "DOMAINS PLUS" BETTER?: We offer several features that our competition doesn't. (See the Main Domain Page). We also offer a very easy way to manage and renew your account. And we offer it all at a very reasonable price! (Plus, if you are an existing UltiHost Customer, we can even do it all for you - just apply for Free Customer Domain Management on the Main Domain Page!)

HOW LONG DOES OWNERSHIP OF A DOMAIN LAST?: For as long as you pay for! Domains can be registered for up to 10 years, and renewed over and over. The minimum for a new domain is a 2 year ownership. The mandatory fee for transfer is 1 year, after which you can add more years if you desire.

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Purchases, Transfers, and Renewals

HOW DO I RENEW MY DOMAIN NAME?: You will receive an email approximately 30-60 days before your domain is about to expire. Simply log in to your account to renew your account, or to add more time to your ownership. If you own several domains, you can log into any of them, and a list will be displayed showing all your domains. There will also be an URGENT box stating that a name or names are about to expire. Click the "Renew domain" link, and it will display all expiring domains, no matter what domain you logged in with! Just pick the amount of time (1-10 years) you wish to renew, and follow the instructions. It couldn't be easier!

IS THERE ANY PROBLEM TRANSFERRING MY ACCOUNT TO ULTIHOST?: Not at all. You simply apply to transfer management of your Domain to our service. You may receive an email from your present Registrar asking you to confirm the change - just reply that you authorize it, and in a few days the account will move here. (Be sure to read the email carefully - you must respond in the exact fashion they dictate, or the transfer may not go through!)

I CAN'T GET MY ACCOUNT TO TRANSFER TO YOU - I AM HAVING PROBLEMS WITH MY PRESENT DOMAIN REGISTRAR - WHAT DO I DO?: Simply click the EMAIL link on our main Domain Page, and let us know what the problem is - we will offer whatever assistance we can to help you with the transfer.

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Legal and Technical issues

WHAT CHARACTERS ARE ALLOWED IN A DOMAIN NAME?: A domain name can include alpha-numeric characters (0-9, A-Z) and hyphens. They can not begin with a hyphen. Domain names are not case sensitive.

HOW LONG CAN A DOMAIN NAME BE?: A domain name can be up to 63 characters long, not including the 4 characters used for the extension. (COM, NET, etc.) Keep in mind that the longer your name is, the harder it may be for some people to remember.

WHY DOES IT TAKE TIME FOR DOMAINS TO BECOME "ACTIVE"?: When you first place a domain name online (or let one expire and then renew it), it takes time for the registration data to propagate world wide. First, the Domain Name has to be cleared by Internic to make sure you are the only owner of the name. Then, once approved, it has to be loaded into the main domain hubs worldwide, and then installed in all the ISP machines (usually overnight). This is what the registration fee pays for. Usually, most names are setup and propagated within 48 hours, unless there is a problem with the name. NOTE: Even though it may take some time for your domain to become functional, it is registered immediately - no one else can claim it!

WHAT IF I TAKE DOWN MY SITE - WHAT HAPPENS TO MY DOMAIN NAME?: You still own it for as long as you registered it for. You can decide to own the name for as long as you like with out ever having a web site - that's up to you.

CAN ANYONE ELSE TAKE OVER MY DOMAIN NAME?: Yes - there are 2 ways someone else can 'stake a claim' to your domain. First, if you let the ownership expire, then the name becomes available for purchase again, and anyone can buy it. Second, someone can dispute your ownership of a particular name. If the name you choose is a trademark or legal name. If you were to register someone else's proper name, or use a company trademark or name, they can contest your ownership. This is rare however, since most trademark names are already registered, and very few people use their proper name as a site name. Note that UltiHost is NOT responsible for any disputes regarding name ownership - that is between you and the other party.

WHAT HAPPENS IF MY DOMAIN NAME EXPIRES?: Within a month, your web site will disappear, since there is no longer any way for the world to connect to it. This has nothing to do with your files being online at a host server - those will still be there - there is just no longer any way to display them! You can renew your Domain if no one else has purchased it, and within a few days, your site will be back online again.

CAN I SELL DOMAIN NAMES I OWN FOR A PROFIT?: Technically, no. We've seen sites and individuals that offer Domains at a marked up price, but technically it is illegal. UltiHost has no involvement in this - we only offer registration and management of Domains. The sale of Domains at extreme mark up is considered scalping, and falls under the laws of your local community.

IS ANY OF MY PERSONAL INFORMATION MADE PUBLIC?: Here at UltiHost, we never publish or sell any information about our customers. However, in accordance with ICANN regulations, your information IS available to anyone that does a "whois" search. This is done to allow rapid resolution of technical problems and to permit enforcement of consumer protection, trademark, and other laws.

DO YOU (UltiHost) EVER TAKE OVER OWNERSHIP OF A DOMAIN NAME?: We wouldn't be in business very long if we did - so the answer is NO. We only offer these services as a benefit to our customers - we are not in the Domain Scalping Business.

WHO ACTUALLY MANAGES ALL THESE NAMES?: There are several major hubs worldwide (aproximately 9 at last count) that send out worldwide listings to every internet service provider every 24 hours. These hubs all have to conform to the INTERNIC standards, to be sure that no existing domain is offered as "available". At that point, it's up to each ISP to "install" the new listings into their system, so that anyone logging on to the internet is directed to the correct address when they click on a URL. Most ISP's update their URL/Address listings every 24 hours or less. This is why it may take 48 hours for a new domain to become active. Internet Service Providers may also "cache" many websites that their callers visit as well. The better ISP's dump their cache every night, or don't even use a cache at all, so that most sites update immediately.

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Picking a Name

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN COM, NET, ORG, ETC.?: The three main URL Extensions are COM (Company), NET (Network), and ORG (Organization). There are others, such as GOV (Government) and EDU (Education), but individuals cannot apply for those. New ones are also beginning to be added, but COM, NET, and ORG are still the most popular. Of these three, COM is the most widely used, and is probably the extension you should apply for. It has become the easiest to remember, and is what most internet users will type in first. However, it's popularity also means it's the hardest to get these days. Many names using the COM extension are already taken.

HOW IMPORTANT IS THE ACTUAL NAME ITSELF?: Not very, unless you have "brand recognition" or expect people to type in your name off hand. It should contain something that has to do with what you are offering, since the Search Engines may take that into account. But other than that, the name can be anything. (EX: It would be foolish for a recognized company like GOODYEAR to not own goodyear.com - on the other hand, if your site offers LUMBER for example, you don't have to have lumber.com as the name. It could be any variation of the word, such as newyorklumber.com, or even something totally different, like wesellwood.com)

SHOULD I PURCHASE MORE THAN ONE DOMAIN NAME?: That's totally up to you. If you want to make sure you are the only one using your particular domain name, you may want to purchase the name with all three extensions - COM, NET and ORG - if they are available. This will cost you 3x as much of course. You may also want to purchase more domain names so you can have a better "presence" on the Web. Since we offer free FRAME FORWARDING, you can list your domains with search engines, or advertise them, then Forward all of them to your main site! The more coverage you have, the easier it makes your main site to find! (Note: Not all Search Engines will respond to a "Frame Forward" URL, but many do! And this will result in your main site getting a higher ranking in the Search Results!)

HOW IMPORTANT IS MY DOMAIN NAME?: Very! It's the only way you can have your site online, and found! Do not let it expire!

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Managing your Domain

CAN I CHANGE MY ACCOUNT INFORMATION?: Yes - simply log in to your account to do things like change your address, email, etc.

WHAT ARE NAMESERVERS?: These are the actual computers (and their addresses) on the internet that can host your site, and translate your domain into an IP address for web browsers to find your site. You will have to enter your host's NameServer info in your Domain Control Panel to get your site up and running. (Unless you are an UltiHost Customer, than we can do all that for you - just apply for our highly recommended Free Domain Management!)

WHAT ARE YOUR NAMESERVER ADDRESSES?: To point your domain name to the UltiHost Servers (if you host your site with us) use the following DNS addresses:

ns1.ultihostweb.com

ns2.ultihostweb.com

HOW MANY LETTERS CAN MY PASSWORD BE? : Passwords should be between 5 and 8 characters in length, and can contain letters or the numbers 0 thru 9. You cannot use any other characters in a password.

CAN I CHANGE MY PASSWORD?: You can change your password at any time, using the control panel. HOWEVER - AND THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT - If you are an existing UltiHost Hosting/Design customer and you have us managing your account, DO NOT CHANGE THE PASSWORD - this will lock us out and prevent us from making any changes or updates on your behalf! If you do not understand this, please email us first, before you change the password.

I FORGOT MY CONTROL PANEL PASSWORD - WHAT DO I DO?: Email us for instructions on how to retrieve your password.

I CAN'T LOG IN TO MY DOMAIN CONTROLS, EVEN THOUGH I KNOW MY PASSWORD: Please make sure you are typing in the full domain name (including .com, etc) but NOT www. - also remember that even though domains are not case sensitive, passwords ARE! Example: PASSword is not the same as PassWORD, and so on.

I HAVE MULTIPLE DOMAIN NAMES AND PASSWORDS - CAN I COMBINE THEM SO THAT ALL THE DOMAIN NAMES ARE MANAGED UNDER A SINGLE ACCOUNT?: There is usually no problem with having a different control panel for each domain - in fact some customers prefer it. However, if you want all your accounts managed under a single account, there are 2 ways you can do this. Note that you must use the same password for ALL accounts! First method - register or transfer your MAIN domain to our system, and on the next screen you will be given the opportunity to enter additional domains, with a COMMA and SPACE between each one - this will combine the accounts on one screen. Second method - all your accounts and controls must be up and running. Once all the accounts are functioning, to combine multiple accounts, please log into your control panel using any existing account, and locate "Consolidate Accounts". Follow the onscreen instructions. We will normally process your request within 24 hours. NOTE: You should also purchase Additonal Domains from your control panel as well, to automatically add them to your account!

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Billing

WHAT NAME APPEARS ON MY CREDIT CARD BILL?: Usually "Domain Discover" or "Tierra Net". These are the companies we are affiliated with to process the credit card orders, and to process ICANN registration - this is normal.

CAN I GET A REFUND IF I DECIDE TO SHUT DOWN MY SITE?: No - once you apply for ownership, it is registered to you until the registration time period expires. The cost of setup is really all you are paying for, and it's a small amount, so there are no refunds.

AM I NOTIFIED WHEN MY DOMAIN IS ABOUT TO EXPIRE?: Yes - you will receive an email 30-60 days before the account is due. However, it's up to YOU to make sure that the email on file is a working address that you can be reached at. You may want to log in to your account from time to time to make sure your information is up to date, and see if renewal time is coming up. (Note: Even if we 'manage' your account for you as an existing UltiHost customer, YOU receive the notification to renew - we do NOT. You must notify us to process the renewal for you!)

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Special Features

WHAT IS URL FORWARDING?: URL forwarding is a tool which allows you to forward your domain name to an existing website. For example, you might forward your domain to http://www.myfreehost.com/myname. In this case, visitors who enter "www.yourdomain.com" into their browser will be automatically forwarded to your existing website at http://www.myfreehost.com/myname. URL forwarding is compatible with all compliant browsers, and is a value-added service which is included free with all domains registered through UltiHost. To setup URL forwarding on your domain name, simply login to your control panel, then choose the "URL Forwarding" link.

WHAT IS FRAME FORWARDING?: FrameForwarding is a form of URL forwarding. It uses frame commands to load your web site. This means that many search engines will see this additional domain as an independant web site, so it's like having more web sites for free, thus increasing your chances of being found in a search! How it works is as follows - a visitor clicks a link or types in MYSECONDNAME.COM, and the frame forwarding will load MYFIRSTNAME.COM instead. However, it will still say MYSECONDNAME.COM in the browser, so most visitors will never even know they arrived at a different site. In effect, you can appear to run several, or hundreds of different web sites, while in fact you only host a single site. FrameForwarding is compatible with most recent browsers, and is a value-added service which is included free with all domains registered through UltiHost. To setup FrameForwarding of a domain name, simply login to your control panel, then choose the "URL Forwarding" link.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Since hidden frames are used to load the second site, it cannot be a site that is already using frames for it's structure. If you attempt to load a 'frame' site, the site will not function correctly since the frame commands are already in use by the forwarding system. Only non-frame commands and designs can be used in the site called upon by Frame Forwarding.

WHEN USING FRAMEFORWARDING, IS IT POSSIBLE FOR THE ADDRESS / LOCATION BAR TO DISPLAY THE LINKS ON MY SITE THAT VISITORS CLICK ON AS PART OF THAT "FORWARDED" DOMAIN AS WELL? : In most cases, Frame Forwarding will load the name of the MAIN DOMAIN, but not always the sub-pages. You may also encounter problems if your additional pages are withing directories. Keeping your main site - the one forwarded to - as simple as possible as far as links are concerned is advisable. Also keep in mind that you cannot use frames on the site, since there are already hidden frames in action. If you wish to assure that the domain name (URL) always appears as the Forwarded Address, you will possibly need to create copies of your existing pages, and name them as outlined below. (Example: You are hosting on a free site and want it to appear as if you are paying for a professionally hosted site, you can 'trick' the browser into displaying links as all being at "mydomain.com".)

There are two steps you must take in order to positively display links in the address bar when using FrameForwarding....

First, add the following line to your html code:

<BASE TARGET=_top>

This tells a web browser that the site should exit the frames when links are clicked.

Next, update the URLs in your links so they reference your domain and the files or directories you wish to link to.

For example; if you own "mydomain.com" and you are FrameForwarding to a site named http://www.freehost.com/bob, and you have a link to a page called newlink.html, the entire path would normally be: http://www.freehost.com/bob/newlink.html. However, you wish to continue having "mydomain.com" appear in the location bar. You should replace the html for the link, changing it to: http://www.mydomain.com/newlink.html - note that we have replaced the real site URL with your forwarded domain in URL address. The "BASE TARGET=_top" command, in combination with the FrameForwarding, will allow your visitor to think they are really on "mydomain.com" instead of "www.freehost.com/bob". However, there is a downside to this - if you ever want to use the actual TRUE URL (freehost.com/bob), the site will not function since all the links are calling up mydomain.com instead. Use this programming only if absolutely needed. In most cases, Frame Forwarding will get the caller to the site, and continue to list the sublinks correctly. If in doubt, try it that way first, with normal programming. Or, pay to host the site/domain with UltiHost.

WHAT IS EMAIL FORWARDING?: Email forwarding is a setting that allows any email addressed to your domain to be forwarded to any existing email account. For example, if your main site's email is "sales@1site.com", but you also own "2site.com", you can activate email forwarding for "2site.com" and forward mail to sales@1site.com. (EX: sales@2site.com, support@2site.com, webmaster@2site.com" would all arrive at "sales@1site.com".) Keep in mind however that many junk emailers can take advatage of this, by sending mail to any made up address at your domain - it will ALL arrive at the mailbox you designate! To set up Email Forwarding, log in to your control panel and choose "Email Forwarding".

CAN I USE ULTIHOST FOR MY DOMAIN NAME, BUT GO ELSEWHERE FOR SITE HOSTING?: Yes. But we recommend keeping everything "under one roof" so to speak - this way if anything goes wrong with your site, we can immediately discover the problem. If you use several services for different things, we can only help with the particular service we offer. (EX: If your web site goes down, is it the Domain Name? - The host computers? - are the files damaged? Who do you contact first?) This is why we have added Domain Name Management to our services, since we found many others out there to be totally unreliable, and we wanted to offer the most complete services possible to our customers! However, if you only want to use UltiHost to purchase and manage domains so as to take advantage of our prices and features - that's fine!

CAN I GO ELSE WHERE TO BUY/RENEW MY DOMAINS ONCE I APPLY HERE?: Yes, but if you wish to keep our special services and price, you need to return here to UltiHost to manage your accounts. We can not be responsible for what happens to your account if you go elsewhere.

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