Why You Can’t Trust Your DNS Records To The Planet

Decoder ring: I’m “Customer” and the technicians are from The Planet, the company that hosts my Web sites.

Please wait while we find an agent to assist you…
You have been connected to David G.
David G: Thank you for contacting The Planet Customer ServiceTeam! How may I assist you today? Would you be interested in seeing the weekly promotions that we are having?
Customer: Hi there…
Customer: My site, www.zunethoughts.com, isn’t loading – it seems like a DNS issue
Customer: The other sites on my server are loading fine
David G: Can you verify your username and last 4 of your password please?
Customer: I was wondering if you might have any ideas?
Customer: sure….
Customer: username: **************
Customer: password: ****
David G: Let me transfer you to our Support Team. They will be able to point you in the right direction for a solution. One moment please Thank you for choosing The Planet!
David G has left the session.
Please wait while we find an agent from the Technical Support department to assist you.
You have been connected to Michael W.
Michael W: Hello, how may I assist you?
Customer: Are you able to see what I said earlier in this chat?
Michael W: Yes, one moment please.
Michael W: There was a problem with many of the DNS zones in our name servers. This caused some domain records not to resolve. I ahve republished your zone which should be ready some time after 6AM CST. I do apologize for any issues this may have caused.
Customer: So my site is down not due to anything I’ve done, but due to mis-management by The Planet? That’s completely unacceptable.
Customer: What is the SLA for The Planet? It’s not acceptable for me to lose 10+ hours of uptime on one of my domains.
Michael W: Again I do apologize for this issue and it is still an issue that is undergoing investigation. Republishing the domains corrects the issue.
Customer: I appreciate the apology, but it doesn’t change the fact that I’ve lost 10+ hours of income from that domain. What is the SLA for The Planet?
Michael W: DNS is offered as a courtesy and is not covered by the SLA. Again I do apologize for any issues this may have caused you.
Customer: That’s quite interesting – I didn’t realize The Planet would offer a “courtesy” service to it’s customers and not have it be part of the SLA.
Customer: Thank you for the information – it’s helpful for me to know that I should not rely on The Planet for stable DNS.
Customer: Goodbye.

  • Their DNS service was always a bit dodgy, even back in the Rackshack days. We took to running our own nameserver, which solved the problem. It might be a nightmare to set up though – we did ours through Plesk and it wasn’t too bad, but I’m moving to a Windows 2003 server with no control panel in the next few weeks and I’m not looking forward to setting it up from scratch. *gulp*

  • David,
    Thanks for the input. I don’t think I want to run my own DNS, but I know there are DNS service providers out there. This place is $15/year per domain for secondary DNS:

    http://www.easydns.com/secondarydns.php3

    Seems like a pretty cheap way of ensuring this doesn’t happen again (or greatly lessens the chance).

  • That looks like it might solve some headaches – thanks! Obviously, we only have the one server so my reasoning was that it didn’t really matter if the nameserver and sites were on the same machine, because if one was down the other was down too.

    I originally set ours up to use our server as the primary DNS, and EV1 as the secondary for the PocketGamer domain. It did seem a bit complicated originally, but I haven’t needed to touch it for a couple of years now.