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Article ID : # Last review : 2015-05-15 17:49:40

Using the Alias Record - pointing a root or naked domain to a CNAME


Using the Alias record type in DNS to point a root or naked domain to a CNAME

Since CNAME records are increasingly popular and have limitations where you cannot CNAME to a Root or Naked domain (also known as the Zone Apex). CloudfloorDNS has an "Alias Record" that helps break the CNAME limitation so you can use it on a naked or root domain.

Cloud services such as Google, Amazon EC2 and Elastic Load Balancers (ELB) generally make it easy to integrate DNS, as most supply a CNAME record to which users point their DNS host names. However, CNAMEs come with many limitations. For example, users cannot normally point a naked domain or root record to a CNAME. Additionally, CNAMEs cannot be present with other record types of the same host name, so if users wish to use load-balancing features with groups of A Records and CNAMEs in this instance, they are unable to do so. These limitations not only add unnecessary complexity but also require valuable time to avoid.

CNAMEs are used as low maintenance DNS setups. If a service provider's IP address changes, the settings would not have to change (as opposed to A Records, which would have to be changed to reflect the new IP). Additionally, ELBs often change their IP addresses in response to load. This can even be done without notice to the users, therefore making the CNAME the only reasonable solution for these technologies.

The "Alias Record" in our DNS allows users to add a CNAME to any record group and have it treated by the resolving client as an A Record, saving users time and money.

See an example of the Alias record in the screenshot below. This shows the Root or Naked Domain (Notice there is no name in the DNS record, this is the root zone) and it's pointing to a server at called

CloudfloorDNS Alias Record-Cname to Root or Zone Apex

The Alias Record gives the CNAME all the capabilities of the A Record, while improving overall DNS performance. This not only offers users much greater flexibility, but saves time and money as well. Preliminary testing has shown an average of 50 ms saved over typical connections by using the Alias Record, with top savings reaching the 250 ms mark. The Alias Record clones the CNAME record and once resolved, it can be served as part of a load balancing group with other A Records seamlessly.

keywords : zone apex, cname redirect, zone with cname, naked domain redirect, naked domain cname, zone apex naked domain, cname at the apex, forward naked domain


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