Tucows – Nameserver doesn’t exist at the registry

Nameserver [ns1.domain-name.com] doesn’t exist at the registry

When you are configuring a domain name with custom name servers the custom name servers need to be registered. It is free and needs to be done with the registrar of the domain name. To discover your registrar use this web site www.who.is and type in your domain name then look at the registrar entry. If you are a reseller with Tucows or your hosting provider is ask them to do the following.

1. Login to their reseller control panel and locate the option to “Add Nameserver to All Foreign Registries”.
2. Type in the custom name server address and click on add nameserver.
3. On the Manage Interface, https://manage.opensrs.net, in the Name Server section, click on the link at the bottom of the page. “If you want to create or modify a nameserver which is based on <Domain Name>, click here.”
4. To create a new nameserver, add the DNS prefix (ns1, dns2, etc.) and the IP address, then click Create Name Server. The new name server will appear in the list above.

You will need to wait a few hours for the addition to propagate before you can change the name servers on your domain name. I usually just wait a day.


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  1. this information seems no longer up to date

  2. Hey Mike,

    Just came across this post of yours from googling a similar problem I’m having setting up a private name server for my new dedicated server. I cannot for the life of me get the domain I’m using for the hostname/NS to connect with my IP addresses. I set them up a private nameservers through the dashboard of my registrar as ns1 and ns2 and directing them to the main WHM IP and one of several additional open lines. I have given it several days of propagation and when I try and change the name server of other domains I own I get the sever not found in the registry or The nameserver you chose may not be a valid nameserver. Please verify with the provider and try again.

    Any ideas? Thanks

    • It sounds like you don’t have the customer name servers registered with the registrar. Unfortunately it’s not as easy as adding records, you have to go through the registrar and create name servers for the domain. With Tucows its under “Use As Name Servers”. You click on edit and then fill in ns1 and the IP address, save and then they register. After that you edit your name servers and use the new ones.

  3. Hey Mike,

    Thats what I did. I’m with Dotster. Chose a domain to be my WHM hostname and nameservers. They have a panel for creating a private name server.

    – I chose sample.org as my domain to be used for WHM hostname and 2x NS’s
    -Dotster has a private nameserver creation panel. Created NS1 & NS2 pointing towards my two IP’s.
    -Created an A Record for hostname server.sample.org @ the main IP.
    -Made sample.org’s nameserver settings from dotster default for ns1 & ns2.sample.org
    -There are 4 DNS Zones on my WHM. two for the NS’s and one for sample.org Cpanel Acct, and one for lets say domain.com Cpanel Acct

    If I go and try to change the name server of domain.com with my ns1.sample.org to point it towards my server for the domain.com cpanel account I get that “The nameserver you chose may not be a valid nameserver. Please verify with the provider and try again” error.

  4. This is a TuCows problem. I have vanity nameservers through namecheap and have a reseller hosting account. I have never had an issue with adding our custom nameservers. However, Hover.com (owned by TuCows) comes up with this stupid error.

    I could understand putting a warning, but not outright banning. This is a bad programming issue at TuCows and not an issue with your setup.

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