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All About URLs and CNAME Records


Understanding URLs

A ‘unique resource locatorÂ’ (URL) is the address at which a web page is found.  Our support website, for example, can be found at https://www.websitetoolbox.com/support

This URL can be divided into parts:

>The Subdomain: www

>The Root Domain: websitetoolbox.com and

>The Path: /support

Combined, these parts tell a browser which web pages to display and where to find them. 


Understanding CNAMEs

A Canonical Name Record (CNAME) is a bit of internet trickery that allows a URL to show pages hosted at a different domain.

What does that mean?

For a variety of reasons, your Website Toolbox forum pages are permanently hosted on our servers at websitetoolbox.com.  

When you first create your forum, it appears at the URL yourusername.websitetoolbox.com.  However, you might not want your visitors to see that your forum is hosted at Website Toolbox.  You might want your visitors to see your pages at your own domain.

Without needing to do any complicated uploading/downloading, editing, exporting, crying etc., you simply tell your domain www.yourdomain.com to display the pages you have hosted over at websitetoolbox.com.  

A CNAME record is the techno-babble way to do this.


You can follow these step-by-step instructions to set up your custom domain.

We also have CNAME set-up instructions for many common hosting providers.


If you still need help, please contact us.