Posts Tagged ‘dns’


Friday, September 29th, 2017

My very first host name was a free dynamic host name provided by the good folks behind It was a classic story line, kid with his first always-on internet connection (cable, later ADSL) wants to host a web page on the world wide web! This ran well for me for well over a decade… until today.

I don’t even recall how I ended up with this free service, they were one of the first, but probably not the first dynamic host name provider. I suspect I just liked that “” was many characters shorter than the alternatives.

Unfortunately, as best as I can tell, the site has been shut down. My best guess, based on the snapshots available from, is that sometime in 2015 it all went away.

Apparently, they have graciously maintained DNS service for the host names that were in their system (I suspect updates have been disabled for a while). I wouldn’t have noticed that the site was gone if the static IP address for my little site finally had to be revised.

Long ago I deprecated that host name in favour of a address (of which I have control); however, I still type the shorter “” address often.

RIP, and thanks for all the great lookups!

How to Properly Use 3rd Party Web Services

Friday, April 4th, 2008

Today I got an email marketing message from Fido, my cellphone provider.


Unfortunately, Fido used a third party email and contest manager that makes me unsure if the email is real or a scam.

The email “from” line looks good:

But it’s trivial to fake a “from” line.

The email “reply-to”: fido.communication(xxxxxx)

I removed the x’s which I suspect are unique to my email address and used for mail list management.  It doesn’t really matter.  Is this address confidence inspiring to the non-technical user? Nope.

Worse, the email is about a contest.  In the email there is a link to enter the contest:

What is  And why should I enter my phone and other info into a website that doesn’t even spell conversation properly? (That’s a joke, I realize it’s a cute mispelling used for a website name).  Sure, there are Fido logos in the email and on the web page.  But who knows?  I’ve seen fake bank websites that also look authentic.  It’s easy to copy logos and verbage.

In the end, I decided to skip this contest.  Who knows if it’s a real contest or not.  Besides, I never win prizes anyway.

What should companies do?  Use their own domain for everything because they’re much harder to use fraudulently.  If they choose to outsource bulk email, use a provider that can use “” for their messages.  For contests?  “”.  For surveys, “”.

In fact, that’s exactly what we offer with the custom survey domain feature of  We have several clients who host surveys using a subdomain of their primary domain.

It works for everyone.  The end survey respondents are confident that the survey is legitimately from our customer.  Our customers are happy that their survey respondents are confident, and thus willing to answer the survey.  And we’re happy to have paying customers.

So there you go.  A rant and an advertisment for one of our websites all rolled into one.  Not bad for a Friday afternoon.

Naque for Unique Names (finally) Gets a Domain

Monday, March 10th, 2008

After at least a couple years of neglect, we’ve decided to touch up our fun little website for creating unique names.

The first step was to finally move the site to it’s own domain name, no more piggy-backing off of our corporate domain,!

The Naque for Unique Names has moved from it’s old address at to

It’s a small step, but it’s the first of many. Anyone with links to the old site are encouraged to update them.

Avoiding WHOIS Searches

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Domain Name front-running is in the news on Slashdot again. This is the sneaky concept where bad domain name resellers and domain parking sites snoop on end-users as they look for the right domain name for their legitimate website.

E.g. if years ago I happened to use a bad DNS registrar to test if was taken, and I didn’t register it right away, the shady DNS registrar would register it for themselves and then try to resell it to me at a premium – what’s worse is that currently they don’t even pay a dime as long as they cancel the registration within 4 days (or something).

So, we at Perceptus Solutions Inc., wrote a tool to try and avoid part of the risk, the “WHOIS” search.  Our web based tool is not bullet-proof. You can get false negatives. Plus, in theory, the DNS lookup can be snooped as well.

Nevertheless, for over a year, our Dig some domain names tool has been hosted on our random dumping ground called We didn’t have a blog back then, so there was no where good to mention it. Today we have this blog, online video poker for money, so we’re posting it now.

Our tool avoids the WHOIS lookup.  I also suspect the DNS server used on our VPS is less likely to be snooped since it’s not primarily used by Joe-Six-Pack — If I was buying domain lookup data, I’d prefer the higher volume, more “real” data that big ISPs like Comcast, Verizon, or Rogers would have to offer.

So, there you go.  It’s free to use, and we don’t expect enough traffic for it to be worth snooping ourselves.  But you’ll have to take our word on that.