How to Manage your DNS Settings for Hypernode

Hypernode is a cloud-based hosting service. In case of an up- or downgrade, your shop can transparently be moved to other hardware with different specs. When upgrading or downgrading a Hypernode plan, we create a second node, migrate your shop to this new node, and then remove the old one.

Thanks to Hypernode’s very cool Dedicated IPfeature, the IP address of your Hypernode does not (!) change when you change a Hypernode plan. However, there are three exceptions to take into account.

This article explains three ways to handle your DNS. Please decide for yourself the best option for your specific situation.

Dedicated IP on Hypernode – 3 exceptions

There are three exceptions in which you cannot benefit from a dedicated IP and which may have an impact on how you would like to manage your DNS:

  1. A change of cloud provider – also when switching between Falcon (formerly known as Professional), Pelican, and Eagle (Formerly known as Excellence) plans – will trigger an IP change

  2. The IP address will also change if you request your node to be booted in a different region (data center).

  3. In extreme emergency situations (like fire or longtime power outages), we might need to migrate your Hypernode to another data center. Luckily these chances are very low.

If you’re likely to switch between Falcon and Eagle plans in the future, we recommend you move your domain(s) to Hypernode so we can handle the DNS of your domains to avoid downtime. Or, use the DNS settings as explained below (by using CNAME and not A record).

Three ways to handle your DNS

There are three ways to handle your DNS. Only customers who have access to a Service Panel can choose option 1.

  1. Move your domain(s) to Hypernode and let Hypernode manage the DNS

  2. Manage an external DNS by pointing your domain(s) to Hypernode by using CNAME and not A record

  3. Manage an external DNS by pointing your domain(s) to the IP address of Hypernode via A record

Good to know:

Options 1 and 2 will prevent DNS downtime.

Option 2 has a significant disadvantage: you cannot use SSL with your naked domain. People who visit https://yourdomain.com/, will get a certificate warning from the browser.

Option 3 is the best in case of an external DNS, and you want to make use of https://yourdomain.com/, but you will encounter DNS downtime if the IP address of your Hypernode changes.

If you cannot benefit from a dedicated IP on Hypernode, please decide the best way to handle your DNS. We recommend always moving your domains to Hypernode. We’ve included a detailed explanation of options 1 and 2 below.

Option 1: let us manage your DNS

What happens at the background?

We will create an A record for domain.com and a CNAME record for www.domain.com. Other A- and CNAME records for domain.com and www.domain.com will be removed. Records for subdomains are not touched, so it’s still possible (and perfectly reasonable) to have a subdomain for your blog on blog.domain.com.

If a domain is linked to a Hypernode, it’s no longer possible to manually change the apex records that point to your Hypernode. We will make a backup of the record we adjust. These show up in the DNS admin as TXT records for backup.domain.com. If you unlink your Hypernode, we will put the backup records back. You can delete or change them if you choose to do so.

Please note:

  • By letting us manage your DNS, you will also be able to use your apex domain

  • Preferably the TTL for the DNS records is low to make the transition to Hypernode quick. Please check this before making any changes to your DNS.

Option 2: Manage an external DNS by pointing your domain to Hypernode by using CNAME and not an A-record

If you cannot transfer your DNS to Hypernode, you can choose to only point the CNAME record to your Hypernode. We do not recommend this option because you cannot use SSL on your naked (also called apex) domain name: yourdomain.com, without the ‘www.’-prefix.

If this is not an issue, the configuration needed can be found below:

Configuration:

  • Have a CNAME for your www-domain + an A Record that directs to the dedicated IP address of your Hypernode

  • Have a CNAME for your www-domain + an A record for your apex (also called naked) domain pointing to a redirector that redirects to the www-domain (our wwwizers)

These examples assume you have a site called yourdomain.com and a Hypernode called yourd01.hypernode.io.

The recommended way to configure your DNS is to create a CNAME record in your DNS configuration, pointing to Hypernode:

www.yourdomain.com      CNAME       yourd01.hypernode.io

This means that www.yourdomain.com will point to wherever yourd01.hypernode.io points, and we will make sure that that always points to the correct IP address.

Please note: You can also configure your wildcard (*) domain name to Hypernode.

*.yourdomain.com      CNAME       yourd01.hypernode.io

Option 3: Manage an external DNS by pointing your domain(s) to Hypernode by using CNAME and not an A-record

Problems arise when people visit your naked (also called apex) domain name: yourdomain.com, without the ‘www.’-prefix. It is not possible to create a CNAME record for your apex domain.

The preferred way to redirect your apex (or naked) domain when the domain is not managed by Hypernode, is to use the direct IP address of your Hypernode. You can find your IP with the “ping yourname.hypernode.io” command.

Some DNS providers, like DNSimple or DNS Made Easy, can create ALIAS or ANAME pseudo-records. These behave like CNAME records for apex domains. Unfortunately, they are not widespread yet, so the chances are your provider doesn’t support them.

Another solution is redirecting traffic for the apex domain yourdomain.com to its www-counterpart www.yourdomain.com. You can use our free wwwizer service for this. Just configure the following A-records for your apex domain, and they will redirect all traffic for you.

# Add both for redundancy!
yourdomain.com A 46.21.232.141
yourdomain.com A 46.21.233.172

Please note: Note that if you make use of the wwwizer redirect servers, people that visit https://yourdomain.com directly will get an error message, either indicating that there is no https available or a plain connection refused error. The wwwizers work as a forwarding service to the direct IP address of the Hypernode. This way, we can manage any IP changes for you. That is the advantage. The disadvantage is that these records do not cooperate with SSL and that, therefore the certificate does not work correctly on the domain name without the www.

Let’s Encrypt and Wwwizers

Also important to note is that Let’s Encrypt does not work when you use the wwwizers, the Let’s Encrypt validation cannot be completed and will return an error. The solution is to purchase a paid SSL certificate via us or to use the direct IP of your Hypernode instead.

Don’t fancy these solutions? Migrate your domain to Hypernode and let us manage your DNS.

DNS and Hypernode Managed Vhosts

The Hypernode Managed Vhosts (HMV) system is currently enabled by default on all newly booted Hypernodes (all Hypernodes created after 01-05-2020).

Check if you have HMV enabled by running this command:

hypernode-systemctl settings managed_vhosts_enabled

If so, it will give the following output:

managed_vhosts_enabled is set to value True

If this isn’t enabled, you can just skip the part below.

Due to this configuration, it is required to add a new vhost for every domain you want to link to your Hypernode. So you need to configure your DNS correctly and add a new vhost for the domain.

To add a new vhost, for example the domain name www.example.com, to your configuration, you can run the command hypernode-manage-vhosts www.example.com. This will create a new vhost configuration in /data/web/nginx/www.example.com/, using the Magento 2 template.

Please note that defining the vhosts ‘www.example.com’, does not automatically add ‘example.com’ as a vhost. You will have to manually define a vhost for this. Since most people want their ‘example.com’ to redirect to ‘www.example.com’, you can use the --type wwwizer argument to set this up. This will configure the vhost to redirect all traffic to the www-version of the domain.

Read more about Hypernode Managed Vhosts in this article.

Redirects in Nginx

If you want to force a redirect to www. or the non-www. domain, you can use a redirect.

You can read how this works in this article.

Shop on a subdomain?

If you host your shop on a subdomain (for example, shop.yourdomain.com), and you don’t want to be available on www.shop.yourdomain.com, you can forget all about the wwwizer service, and there’s no need to add the two IP addresses in your A records as explained above. Simply create a CNAME-record pointing to your Hypernode, and it will work:

shop.yourdomain.com      CNAME       yourd01.hypernode.io