Recently, Kenneth Reitz wrote a little blog post about a bunch of tools he’s using. One of the items on his list was DNSimple which looks like an awesome tools for managing DNS entries for multiple domains with a single interface and single DNS infrastructure independent of your registrar or hosting service.
The funny thing is, up to a couple of weeks ago I’d have gladly spent a couple of USDs on something like that but then I accidentally went into my current ROC’s (registrar of choice = hover.com) backend and remember that I never really played around with their new UI before. And I’ve missed quite a lot …
Previously, hover.com had one of the worst yet still luckily simplistic interfaces for DNS management in a registrar I’ve ever seen. I have to emphasize on the “simplistic” here since the worst interface IMO is still the one provided by domainfactory, in my opinion ;-) The biggest issue I had with hover’s previous interface was that the main menu was restricted to a “currently managing” domain, a fact displayed only in the smallest of readable fonts.
The next little obstacle in the course towards managing your DNS was that you had to basically confirm that you had at least the slightest idea of what you were doing. I still don’t get why they deemed something like that necessary.
Luckily this all changed a couple of months ago with a new interface being made available in some kind of pre-roll-out similar to #newtwitter back in the days. And boy, tons has changed:
- No more stupid domain changing before the main menu has any kind of meaning
- No more confirming that you know what DNS means
- No more ugly 1999-table-designs
What you get now is a rather slick interface with tons of aesthetic bling but without really trying to jump you into your face. For instance the account settings for a domain or now easily accessible through a simple form with a handful of collapsed subforms. No unlocking or something. It’s like they trust you to know what you’re doing if you’ve made it this far:
Also the DNS interface is now far cleaner with some filters for finding your entries and … it just looks way nicer.
And if you just have one or two domains, there is even a “global” DNS interface for all your domains.
I have to say, I’m extremely pleased with these changes … otherwise this post would probably not exist. That said: Over the long run I will probably need something like DNSSimple anyway. As much as I like hover so far and I definitely feel like I get my money’s worth here, the idea of having one DNS managing all my domains independent of host and registrar is a big seller for me. A couple of months ago I also looked at PointHQ, but I somehow didn’t like the UI. I totally understand that they want to upsell you to their premium account, but this was a bit too much for me :-) Anyway, this and/or DNSimple is probably something for another post.