The registrar I have is networksolutions.com, and for quite a while, the name servers were pointing to Site5.com, where hosting is for one of my domains. I wanted to bring DNS control back to networksolutions, so I pointed the name servers back to networksolutions and added in all my A records.

However, I noticed that the site soon became unreachable. I'm curious as to why this happened? If the domain was pointing to either the old name servers or the new ones, it would still have the proper A records and whatnot.

Is this because when I changed name servers, a request was made to delete them completely, and then the DNS servers worldwide have to wait for network solutions to send out the new ones or something?

I was hoping this would be a switch with zero downtime, such as a normal A record change.

  • I would have expected zero downtime as well. Unless there was an error in the DNS zone at networksolutions? When you check the WhoIs record, does it show networksolutions?
    – MrWhite
    Jun 19, 2012 at 18:07
  • Do you have the same data (FQDNs and IPs) in both the old and new DNS servers? What kind of error are you getting? (e.g. no resolution, 404 error, 500 error, etc.) Jun 21, 2012 at 1:10
  • Err didn't check the error code (doh!), but when looking up the domain in network-tools, it would give me some sort of generic error indicating that it failed to lookup the dns records for the domain.
    – Brian
    Jun 21, 2012 at 13:49
  • So I called NS and they said that there will definitely be a downtime of around 1 to 2 hours during a name server change from one nameserver to another. Very upsetting. This must be something specific to Network Solutions.
    – Brian
    Jun 21, 2012 at 13:52

2 Answers 2


I've had trouble with "notworksolutions" regarding DNS issues. I was down for a week when transferring domains from their clasping little fingers.

I agree with w3d -- what does "whois" say? If networksolutions is listed as the nameserver, they need to fix the problem.

But "zero" downtime is perhaps unrealistic. It takes time for the root servers to be updated and for changes to percolate through the network. It might take 48-72 hours to get around. If not, perhaps some of the SOA parameters are sub-optimal.

  • I hate to disagree, but I think that a non-outage was a completely reasonable expectation IF the same DNS data is stored in both the old and new SOAs. I've done this myself several times. Jun 21, 2012 at 1:08
  • Yea, if the A record is identical, I agree that there should be no downtime if the old nameserver is still functional. <p>But @Brian said he was required to delete the old nameserver, which might give "name not found" errors while the root servers were being updated. I think requiring that old nameservers be deleted was totally unreasonable in this case. Jun 22, 2012 at 1:46
  • WHY must StackExchange remove line breaks in comments? Does it want to be FacePlant when it grows up? Jun 22, 2012 at 1:48
  • 1
    Bleh - I think the issue was probable that the name server change was done before network solutions actually had a zone file created and pushed out. But on my second attempt, everything went smoothly.
    – Brian
    Jun 26, 2012 at 1:11
  • No, whois is not a tool to use to diagnose DNS "propagation" issues. May 1, 2017 at 10:55

If you change nameservers for a zone already provisioned (with some records), the new nameservers need to be configured with the same zone content before switching control over them, otherwise obviously they will not be able to serve the correct records and hence will start to make various services in your zone not reachable anymore.

If you have trouble with your provider nameservers and/or its procedure to switch your zone over their nameservers, you could/should probably start by asking them for help. If you just did change your nameservers, it seems to me necessary that their nameservers will not be able to serve the correct content, and if you add records to them after, there may be a delay, by your provider, to make sure they are configured with your A records correctly.

Only your provider could give you more information on that. If you give your domain name, people here would have been able to do some diagnostics…

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