How to point your GoDaddy-registered domain to your DreamHost account

So you’ve got a shiny new domain name registered at GoDaddy (or maybe you’ve had it languishing there for awhile… I won’t tell, I promise!).

Now you want me to install WordPress at your shiny new DreamHost account.

How do you get GoDaddy to play nice with DreamHost?

There’s just one little-bitty change you need to make inside your GoDaddy account. Ready? Here are the steps:

1. Login to GoDaddy.

If you click the “My Account” tab on the right edge of the green navigation bar, you’ll see a screen that looks like this one:

GoDaddy "my account" screen

The first tab on this screen, beneath your name and customer number, is “Products.” If you have domains registered at GoDaddy, you’ll see a line labeled “Domains.” If you have purchased any other products from GoDaddy, such as email, security certificates, or online storage, you’ll see those listed here as well.

2. Click the green Launch button to the right of Domains.

This click takes you to the Domain Manager, which lists all the domains you’ve registered through GoDaddy:

GoDaddy domain manager

You can bulk-edit multiple domain names by checking their checkboxes, but we’ll assume you’re starting with one domain name.

3. Click the domain you want to use for your WordPress blog.

Now, you’ll see the “Domain Manager” screen with all kinds of details and links.

The only thing you want to pay attention to right now is the link called “Nameservers.”

There’s a link, with an icon that resembles a shiny oil drum, near the top of the page. There’s (probably) another link at the bottom of the page called “manage.” Either of these will take you to the same place.

Domain Details screen, shown when you click on "manage details" for an individual domain in your GoDaddy account

4. In the popup window, fill in the DreamHost nameservers.

(Of course, these instructions will work equally well for a non-DreamHost hosting account, but we’re going to stick with the simple here.)

You must click the button that says “I host my domains with another provider.”

Then you must fill in the following blanks (and yes, it is perfectly OK to leave Nameserver 4 blank):

Nameserver 1: NS1.DREAMHOST.COM
Nameserver 2: NS2.DREAMHOST.COM
Nameserver 3: NS3.DREAMHOST.COM

These nameservers are not case-sensitive. I’m using all-caps just for clarity.

Finally, click OK.

Pop-up window where you fill in the DreamHost nameservers

At this point, the popup window will disappear.

You’ll probably see a status message from GoDaddy that says you need to wait a few minutes while the changes are implemented. This is totally normal.

You can feel free to log out of GoDaddy at this point, because technically, you’re done. Or, you can stick around and refresh the page after 10 minutes or so to make sure the Nameservers section of the Domain Details screen (figure 2) updates and correctly shows the DreamHost nameserver information.

You did it! Go you!

And now, when I install WordPress for you, it will show up correctly (instead of the page that says “this domain is parked at GoDaddy” which is not exactly the perfect advertisement for your business, is it?).

Any questions? Leave a comment here, or contact me.

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One comment

  1. Great info. I think the main problem for most people is budgeting. It’s always about what you can afford.

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