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How can I forward a 'non-existant' subdomain to a 'physical' subdomain?

I.e.: ->

Where the first is just a CNAME pointer and the last is a real subdomain with a root.

At I have:


At I have: CNAME (also tried this with just API) A
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1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

It appears that you want to create a subdomain to a root IP address, and then forward a subdomain from a different domain to this subdomain.

First you would create an A record for the subdomain as demonstrated here under "Example 1" (ignoring the FTP part; also note that www is considered a subdomain as well, just like api).

So in the DNS tables for you'd create an A record for: A

This establishes an alias record for host at IP address

Next you'd create a CNAME to this external host as demonstrated here under "Example 3". So in the DNS tables for you'd create a CNAME record for:


This points ->

Then you'd need to wait 24-48 hours for these DNS changes to propagate to DNS servers throughout the Internet in order for these subdomains to resolve properly, so don't make any other changes during that time.

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The first part is already there, because I created a legit subdomain for I had already added the CNAME record on, so I guess I still have to wait for the changes to propogate? The weird part is.. when I go to, it's white for a considerate amount of time before Chrome throws an error.. – Gerben Jacobs Jul 9 '13 at 17:08
As indicated in your question, you didn't need to create a CNAME on for since that host should be managed in the DNS for the domain. Also, this question and my answer are only addressing the DNS setup - you'll still have to make sure is serving the content correctly, which will also serve. Yes, you'll have to wait for the DNS to propagate once everything is setup correctly. – dan Jul 9 '13 at 19:52
Nah, it doesn't work. You suggested: CNAME at original server and A at new server. I've done those both. But it seems like the new server should somehow know that it can accept the first domain, right? – Gerben Jacobs Jul 12 '13 at 7:55
That isn't necessary since you can forward a subdomain to any other subdomain, as demonstrated in the example links. However, as I wrote in my comment above, you'll have to do some configurations in your server to make sure the subdomain is serving the content, and also not preventing as a host. – dan Jul 12 '13 at 8:03
BTW, is it necessary to have -> or can you just have -> since that's what is pointed to anyway? In that case, you can just create an A record in the DNS for for: A – dan Jul 12 '13 at 8:21

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