Domain Names Resolving and Reverting

I had an odd experience this week — I'd moved a client's website to a new server and pointed the domain name to the new nameservers I'd set up. As expected, in a day or so, the domain started to resolve to the new location. Great. Then … it reverted, pointing back to the old server. Not great, but more hours of waiting and it resolved once again to the new server. Temporary glitch, maybe, but great.

And then it went back to the old server. And back and forth again, resolving and reverting.

While I could see from the server logs that people were visiting the new site (that was the good news), the domain resolution/reversion was impacting both me and our client, who was experiencing the same thing although at different times than I was. It was clear that there were DNS issues somewhere.

As you can imagine, by now I was doing continual tracerts to the domain, flushing the DNS on my machine multiple times, checking the news on the 'Net and calling for help. I called the host, who verified that the DNS server I'd set up was working correctly. He suggested I call the registrar. The registrar verified that I'd properly pointed the domain to the new DNS servers. She suggested I call my ISP, something I didn't want to bother with because what was I going to do? Ask them to flush their DNS?

But she — and this is from Network Solutions — handed me the lightbulb moment.

She suggested that I reboot my router.

And that was the solution: reboot the router, or whatever may be caching your DNS locally. Could be a router, could be a modem/router, could be a hardware firewall.

A quick reboot, and all is well. Same for the client.

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