What is involved in transferring a domain? Print

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The time it takes to transfer a domain to a new host depends on several factors, including the domain registrar and the DNS setup. Here is a general overview of the domain transfer process and the time it typically takes:

  1. Preparation: Before initiating a domain transfer, you need to prepare the domain by unlocking it and obtaining the authorization code (also known as an EPP code or transfer secret). This step can usually be completed quickly, typically within a few minutes to a couple of hours.
  2. Initiation: Once you have the authorization code, you can initiate the transfer with the new host. The new host will submit the transfer request to the domain registrar. The time for this step can vary depending on the registrar and the efficiency of their processes, but it typically takes a few hours to a day.
  3. Confirmation and Approval: After the transfer request is submitted, the current domain registrar will send a confirmation email to the domain's administrative contact. This email contains instructions to approve or deny the transfer. If the administrative contact does not respond within a specified timeframe (usually around 5-7 days), the transfer may proceed automatically. Once the administrative contact approves the transfer, it usually takes a few hours for the domain to be released by the current registrar.
  4. Transfer Completion: After the transfer is approved and the domain is released, it enters a DNS propagation phase. This is when the DNS changes associated with the domain transfer are propagated throughout the internet. DNS propagation can take anywhere from a few minutes to 48 hours or longer, depending on factors such as TTL settings and the efficiency of DNS servers worldwide.

During the DNS propagation phase, it's possible that some users may still see the website at the old host while others see it at the new host. This is because different DNS resolvers and ISPs may have varying cache expiration times for the domain's DNS records.

Webstyles has dns servers around the world that propagate your dns records quicker than other hosting providers to minimise the downtime experienced with a domain transfer to an hour or less.


DNS propagation refers to the time it takes for DNS changes to propagate or spread across the internet. When you make changes to your DNS settings, such as adding a new DNS record or modifying an existing one, it takes some time for these changes to be recognized by DNS servers worldwide.

During DNS propagation, DNS servers around the world update their DNS cache with the new information. This process can take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours, and in some cases, it may take up to 48 hours for the changes to fully propagate.

The actual time it takes for DNS propagation depends on several factors, including:

  1. TTL (Time to Live): This is a setting in your DNS record that specifies how long other DNS servers can cache the record before checking for updates. If you have a shorter TTL, changes will propagate faster.
  2. DNS Hierarchy: DNS changes must propagate from the authoritative DNS servers for your domain to the root DNS servers and then down to the DNS servers of internet service providers (ISPs) and end-users. The speed of propagation can be affected by the number of DNS servers involved and the efficiency of their update processes.
  3. DNS Caching: DNS servers generally cache DNS records to improve performance. The existing cached records need to expire or be flushed before the updated records can take effect.

It's important to note that while DNS changes are propagating, different DNS servers might have different information about your domain. This can result in some users seeing the old information while others see the updated information. This is known as DNS propagation delay, and it's why you may experience intermittent accessibility issues during this time.

To minimize the impact of DNS propagation delays, you can:

  1. Set a shorter TTL for your DNS records in advance, so caches update faster when changes are made.
  2. Plan any DNS changes during periods of low traffic or scheduled maintenance to minimize disruption.
  3. Clear the DNS cache on your local machine or within your network to force it to retrieve the latest DNS records.

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