Let's say that I buy example.com domain from GoDaddy who is authorized to sell domains under .com and I would like to use my own DNS servers for zone example.com. What does the GoDaddy technically do if they use BIND as a DNS server? Do they simply create a zone file for example.com and use similar NS records in this zone file in their server:

          IN      NS     customer-ns1.example.com.
          IN      NS     customer-ns2.example.com.

Am I correct? Are there any other technical steps which domain registrar would take?

2 Answers 2


No. If you use your own DNS servers, they don't create a new zone.

What they do is:

  • tell the registry that you have registered the domain name, providing information about you (usually by pointing back to their own whois servers, but that varies from TLD to TLD), though this is sometimes mitigates by the use of privacy proxies

  • tell the registry that the servers for the domain are so and so. If the nameservers have names within the domain itself (something you should definitely avoid), they will also provide the IPs of those servers in addition to the names (to create the glue records).

It's the registry that will add the nameservers (and possibly glue records) for your domain to the TLD's zone.

So, DNS-wise, in this situation, the registrar doesn't do anything at all. They're just a reseller for the registry.

Of course, this situation is probably quite infrequent, as the majority of domain name holders will need DNS hosting (and web hosting, and mail hosting, etc.)


To answer your question directly: Yes. You described it correctly.

However, I am addressing primarily the statement: and I would like to use my own DNS servers

You have a problem that may not have occurred to you yet.

Now for the problem:

You do not want to host your own domain name on your own NS servers that are sub-domains or your parent domain. You should never host your domain name on a network that requires your domain name to resolve. What happens if there is a problem?? It is impossible to fix a problem where your domain name is not resolving when they are on NS servers that require your domain name to reach.

I used to be a web host in my previous life. Yes. I did have my domain name in my DNS servers which were the SOA (statement of authority) for the domain name as much as the DNS servers knew, however I had two redundant high availability DNS servers on two other networks and I pointed the registrar to these. These external DNS servers pulled from my masters. The reason is simple. If anything were to go wrong with my network, it did not interfere with resolving my domain name(s). Hosting your own domain name on a network that requires your domain name to work, will spell disaster for you at some point likely sooner than later and it is nearly impossible to fix without being an expert and a long wait time.

I highly advise against what you are trying to do.

Your recovery time will be long.

  • 1
    Did you post this answer on the correct question? I can't tell how it relates to what is being asked. Oct 2, 2015 at 15:39
  • @StephenOstermiller The Let's say that I buy example.com domain and I would like to use my own DNS servers for zone example.com is a problem. I was addressing that. It is a scenario that is easy to get into, but nearly impossible to get out of quickly when something goes wrong.
    – closetnoc
    Oct 2, 2015 at 21:21
  • 1
    I see. That seems like a hypothetical that is tangential to the question of "Where does the registrar actually put records when you buy a domain name?" Oct 2, 2015 at 21:37
  • @StephenOstermiller I was addressing the OPs desire to host his own domain name on NS that require his domain name to accessed. It used to be against the rules of the Internet when I was a web host if it is not today. It was part of the certification process that was required to be a registered ISP and customer SOA way back in the dark ages which included two separate networks from two vendors, two NS servers external to the networks before two internal NS were allowed. There was a reason for this which was hosting your own domain SOA on a network that requires the domain name failed often.
    – closetnoc
    Oct 2, 2015 at 22:10

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