Monday, May 2, 2016

Mapping Google App engine application to Namesilo domain

I just finished mapping a Google App engine application to a domain purchased from NameSilo.com. Needless to say, it was NOT an easy experience. Jotting down the steps in case, any one else plans to do the same and hopefully I can save you time.


  1. Go to AppEngine Dashboard and go to Settings page on left-hand side.
  2. Select Custom Domains page on the right hand page and click on Add Custom domain
  3. Under Add a New custom domain, in Step 1, give your domain name and click on Verify.
  4. This takes you to google webmasters page with link starting with https://www.google.com/webmasters/verification/verification?
  5. In Select your domain dropdown, select Other (last Option).
  6. Under Step 1 "Add the TXT record below to the DNS configuration for" copy the whole link starting with google-site-verification=xxxx. Keep this page open.
  7. Now, go to Namesilo domain manager and in the middle find "Add TXT/SPF" record link and paste the value in TEXT field. Leave HOSTNAME field blank. This is critical step and it took me a while to figure it out.
  8. Now go back to web master tools page and click Verify. Depending on your stars, it might take about 5 minutes for this to work and it might show error or unable to verify.
  9. Once this is done, go back to App Engine cloud console page. Sign out and sign back in. You should see that verification is done and the domain shows up under step 2.
  10. Under Step 2, select the domain in http://myDomainName.com. Under 3. it shows a bunch of A and AAAA records.
  11. Go back to Domain manager page on Namesilo and click on A and AAAA records and create these 8 entries. For each, even though google says host as @, leave it as blank as Namesilo rejects it. This also took me a while to figure out.
  12. Now you are all set. Type your domain name in new browser and it should work. If using chrome open incognito tab and type your domain name. It should now work since chrome caches and you probably tried in between when it was not working.
Forwarding www.myDomainName.com
  1. In App Engine settings page Under Step, there is sub-domain mapping link. Add www and click on Add. It shows CNAME record to be added. Now go to Namesilo and add this record there as is. CNAME as WWW and value as shown in the App Engine settings page. This did not work after creating this record for me, so I am not sure if this step is required.
  2. Now go back to Domain manager page, select the check box in front of domain, and click on Forward Domains above that gets activated on selecting check box.
  3. Now, scroll down and under forwarding address, fill as www.myDomainName.com and choose http in dropdown before.
  4. Select Forwarding method as permanent forwarding and Path Forwarding as Yes and click Submit.
Congratulations!! Now you are all set to access your app engine application at http://myDomainName.com and www.myDomainName.com

Update

It turns out the above forwarding for www broke the Entire thing, since I started getting Error 301, too many redirects. What happened was that NameSilo removed A entries and CNAME entry from above steps with their own copies. I had to delete those entries and recreate those entries for this work. I could not find a way to remove the forwarding to www.myDomainName.com but I see from NameSilo pages that when you edit DNS entries, forwarding is disabled automatically even though I see the Domain forwarding page with entry to www.myDomainName.com. I am getting mixed results with forwarding based on browser cache, but it is finally working both for naked domain - http://myDomainName.com and www.myDomainName.com, so I am all set.





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