Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Back at last: My domain transfer experience

After several days of being out of commission, my site is back! The domain transfer is complete, and my site is now hosted by GoDaddy instead of Doteasy. However, the situation isn't yet resolved - and the story will probably be quite interesting for anyone who is contemplating a domain transfer themselves.

Quite frankly, I hope I never have to do that again. It was a miserable experience. The GoDaddy site said the transfer would take 5 to 7 days, and they were right - sort of. Here's how it happened:

Day 1: I put in my order with GoDaddy and initiated the transfer. Later that afternoon, I discovered - oops! - I needed my website authorization code in order to truly start the process! I emailed Doteasy, my original hosting provider, to get it. Unfortunately, although GoDaddy has a very prompt customer service team, Doteasy's sucks.

I also manage to set up my outgoing mail to go through GoDaddy's server, thereby fixing my blacklisting problem.

Day 2: I finally get my authorization code from Doteasy and give it to GoDaddy. In the meantime, I'm trying to find out how to set up my email to go through GoDaddy before the transfer takes place. Somewhere around Day 2 or Day 3, I requested that Doteasy change the MX and CNAME records on my site so that I can start using my GoDaddy email accounts without any ridiculous interruption of service. You'll see in a minute how that turned out.

Day 3: I think this is about when my site goes down. It's still being hosted by Doteasy, since the transfer hasn't completed, and my traffic quota has been exceeded. Right about now I think it pertinent to mention that for about half of what my Doteasy hosting cost, GoDaddy gives me 125 times the traffic quota I was getting.

Day 4: Doteasy sends me a form email saying that they've received a request to transfer my domain. The letter says to contact them if the request is not genuine; otherwise they'll approve the transfer in three days. If I might point out two things here: 1) I'd told them on Day 1 that I was transferring my domain, so this ridiculous form letter wasn't even necessary, and 2) it took them three days to send out the form letter after GoDaddy contacted them for approval.

Also on this day, I find out that emails others send to me are bouncing back intermittently. I contact GoDaddy, who I believed was now handling my email, to find out what the problem is.

Day 6: Email still problematic. I find out from GoDaddy that my MX and CNAME records have in fact not been changed. I email Doteasy regarding the problem.

Day 7: Doteasy tells me that because my hosting plan went over, my email was reverting back to the original settings. They resubmit the record changes.

Later this night (Monday night), my email fails completely. I can send email out, but nothing gets in at all. This time, I think it's GoDaddy's fault - even though the MX records have been changed, my email accounts at GoDaddy still say "awaiting MX."

I also find out that my website is back up, even though the transfer hasn't completed. I think it's because my monthly quota at Doteasy was being reset.

Several hours later (about 2am Tuesday morning) the transfer completes. I spend half the freaking night uploading my site to the new servers, as well as working on changes to the site (which I haven't posted yet, not having finished them).

Email still problematic.

The end... Well, not quite. I'm still waiting (rather impatiently) for the email problem to be fixed. (Hel-lo... it's my livelihood, people!!!) I'm also still working on the changes to the site, which I hope to post later this week. And, having neglected my work all evening, I'm finally about to go to bed.


B said...

Welcome back!


Harmony said...

Welcome Back!

Katharine Swan said...

Thanks to both of you! It's good to be back!

Jeremy said...

Doteasy has been holding my domain hostage since the middle of June. Even though I initiated a transfer well in advance of expiration they locked the domain & didn't respond to my request for help until after it expired. Then they demanded that I pay a "domain release fee" because they dropped the ball with their poor service. I sent numerous messages & even had a lengthy phone conversation with support. The call got nothing accomplished & when I repeatedly asked for someone higher up I was told there was no one & the call was ended.

I finally agreed to pay their "domain release fee" but my domain is still locked and now they want another, more expensive fee PLUS demand that I renew their service for a year. This company is hands down the worst that I have ever done business with. Stay far, far away from this company. They make it impossible to get away.

Katharine Swan said...

Jeremy, thank you very much for sharing your experience with Doteasy. It sounds like they've gotten even worse since I transferred my domain away -- and frankly, what they're doing to you doesn't even sound legal. I know the company is based in Canada, so I don't know what the law is there, but if I were you I'd start looking into it! In the meantime, hopefully others will read about your and my experiences, and stay far, far away.

Have you posted a report at RipOffReports.com? If not, I highly recommend you do so. It's another great place online to report your experiences so that others will be aware of them.


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