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I'm currently working on a website and I already know what the domain should be. I searched Godaddy and the name is available but I think not for long because it's a catchy name.

However, I hesitated to buy the domain (let's call it mydomain.com) from Godaddy because I thought that it would bind me somehow to Godaddy. Sometime in the future I'm planning to run a server from home so services like Godaddy won't be necessary.

Basically, I want to make sure no one takes mydomain.com. What options do I have besides registering with Godaddy (or similar services) and paying a monthly (yearly) fee?

Is there perhaps a way to buy the domain 'independent' from web hosting services or registrars?

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    You're talking about an $11 or so guarantee a year that you will own the name. Just pay the cash and don't worry about it. As someone who was just forced to go through a transfer through GoDaddy ... don't use GoDaddy. – Rob Jun 21 '16 at 11:36
  • @Rob Me too. Godaddy is crap. I'm rather impressed with Google domains though. Also they give you privacy for free and other goodies. – dhaupin Jun 21 '16 at 20:46
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I don't think there is a way to reserve a domain name without actually registering it via an ICANN-accredited registrars

I use a service called Synergy Wholesale which you have to do a one time payment to gain access to their services.

Otherwise i recommend ventraip.

If you want the cheapest option then registering it via GoDaddy or similar would work, you will not be able to transfer the domain name to another registra until i think 60 days has past, more info.

So you will then be able to move the domain name anywhere you like, but say 60 days has not past and you have the domain name with GoDaddy and now have purchased hosting somewhere else, you will be able to modify the DNS records within GoDaddy to point to the other hosting service, so you wont be limited to using GoDaddy services just because you registered a domain with them.

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"....so services like Godaddy won't be necessary". Actually they are. You need a registrar (ie, Godaddy and others) to "rent" a domain from the Government. You never actually ever own a domain. They simply won't let you have a domain or TLD that isn't registered via an accredited registrar. You can always transfer registrars though, for a small fee. You can also "transfer lock" your domains so that others can't try to move them. That is the only way they can be "locked" to a registrar....but even then it's an operator's choice.

If you are looking for pure cheap, then look for Godaddy coupons and transfer it out when it's time to renew it. Sometimes they do $1.99/yr domains for first year. But as mentioned by loads of people, Godaddy isn't that great. The best alternative in my opinion would be Google domains. If only for the free privacy shielding...those spammers are very annoying.

The registrar you choose may or may not have a zone manager that functions. This is dependent on what name servers you choose to use. Once you get the zone linked to nameservers, you can edit the routing a bit. A raw domain is just an A record in the zone manager pointed to an IP, where the request will be picked up by a server. Subdomains are the same way. The www is actually a CNAME of raw domain. And MX mail entries can be either. Indeed you can use your home network and nameserver(s) if the IP stays the same (static), otherwise it will be constant upkeep of your A record(s) to keep it pointed to the right IP.

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Go ahead and purchase the domain name through GoDaddy. You will be able to transfer it to your own hosting when you are ready. You will have to wait 60 days before you are able to transfer the domain name however.

If you are worried about paying a monthly fee, then just avoid any hosting package.

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There was in the past a service called defensive registration, in .NAME if I recall correctly. This would achieve exactly what you wanted: the domain could not be registered, by anyone, and this was locked by the registry. The idea was more to help protect tradenames and copyrighted names and it was of course more costly than a domain name. Some registries may provide something like that today (Donuts DPML comes to mind), but it is far from prevalent.

Your best course would be to register it with some trusted registrar. Whichever you choose, you can change later on (by doing a registrar transfer) but this may prove to be more or less cumbersome depending on which registrar you choose.

It is of course hard, and in part a matter of choice, to know which registrar can be trusted. A rule of thumb may be not to run after the cheapest price because you may pay the cost later on in some other ways…

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Unfortunately, ICANN only allows you to register domains under their accredited registrars. Domains cost around 10 to 12 USD depending on registrar.

These registrars don't run the servers, the registries do. Verisign is the sole registry for all .com in the current Internet.

Now, it's true that you can run your own server and have your own version of the Internet but it's not much of an 'Internet' if other people can't connect to it or don't want to connect to it. You see, the current Internet runs on a specific DNS setting. While an alternate/independent web, runs on its own setting. However, most Internet service providers don't have this feature. If you want a website that people can visit, you're going to need a lot of resources to make a server independent of services like GoDaddy.

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