Mapping a Domain to AcuInvoice
In this post we will extend on our prior discussion on domain mapping by demonstrating how to map an entire domain to your AcuInvoice account. This feature can be used if you want to point a domain to your AcuInvoice account and, in so doing, more tightly manage your brand and strengthen your company’s identity. As we previously demonstrated, domain mapping entails two processes: 1) making minor modifications to your AcuInvoice account followed by 2) updating the DNS records for your domain.
Step 1: Update AcuInvoice Settings
The first part of the process—updating your settings in AcuInvoice—informs AcuInvoice that you would like to map a domain to your account and initiates a series of behind-the-scene scripts necessary to prepare your account for domain mapping. To complete this step, simply enter a fully qualified domain name (http://www.yourdomain.com/) in the “Domain Mapping” field in My Account à Preferences, save your settings, and you are finished. Alternately, this step can now be completed during the registration process.
Step 2: Point Your Domain to AcuInvoice
Having completed the process on the application side, you now have a choice of two options for pointing your domain to your account. The simplest method entails using the AcuInvoice name servers. A slightly more advanced option allows you to use your own name servers, but requires that you make some minor changes to your domain’s DNS zone.
Method #1: Use the AcuInvoice Name Servers
The simplest method of pointing a domain to your AcuInvoice account entails using the AcuInvoice name servers. To do this, simply login to your domain registrar and update your domain such that the following name servers are used:
Once you save your settings, it can take up to 24 hours for the name server changes to propagate and for you to be able to access your AcuInvoice account at yourdomain.com. The primary benefit of this first method is its simplicity; this approach can literally be implemented in 5 minutes from start to finish. The downside of this method is that you will no longer manage the domain’s DNS zone. The consequence of this is that you would not be able to do things such as point your MX record to a mail server of your choice. Therefore, method #1 is most appropriately used when you want to dedicate a domain for your AcuInvoice installation and don’t care about any other services that might be associated with the domain (MX settings, subdomains, FTP servers, etc.).
Method #2: Use Your Own Name Servers and Modify Your DNS Zone
The second method allows you to point a domain to AcuInvoice while retaining the ability to manage other services associated with your domain. The process here is almost identical to our discussion of mapping a subdomain to AcuInvoice, so we will be borrowing heavily from our prior post, making only minor modifications where necessary. In our example, yourdomain.com is registered and hosted with GoDaddy and we have the ability to update the DNS settings using GoDaddy’s Total DNS Management tool. To access this DNS manager, we login to GoDaddy, navigate to the Domain Control Center for yourdomain.com and click the link that says “Total DNS Control and MX Records.” Once in the Total DNS Control Panel, make the following additions to point yourdomain.com to your AcuInvoice installation:
- Create an A record directing yourdomain.com to 220.127.116.11, the AcuInvoice shared IP address.
- Add a CNAME record pointing www.yourdomain.com to yourdomain.com.
The new entries will say “Pending Setup” and you will be presented with a message notifying you that it can take 24-48 hours for the settings to take effect. Though sometimes true, our changes propagated in about an hour. That’s it. We have successfully yourdomain.com to an AcuInvoice account. As soon as the changes propagate, our account can be accessed at yourdomain.com. The major benefit of Method #2 is that you retain the ability to manage your domain’s DNS zone. Combined with our previous discussion of subdomain mapping, you now have a variety of options that allow you to carefully manage your brand and retaining AcuInvoice’s ease of use. If you have any questions about this post, please post a comment, submit a ticket from within your AcuInvoice account, or simply email us at support (at) acuinvoice (dot) com.