How to See Your Blog Before the DNS is Updated

Once you buy a new domain and change the Namer Servers to the one of your host, it could take up to 48 hours for the DNS migration.

Waiting is not our style. Here is one way how you could start working directly.


When you type in a site into your browser (as Yahoo.com) first the browser approaches the DNS server. The DNS server provides the ip address of the host where the site is hosted.

View Your Website Before DNS Migration

The reason why you cannot see your site before the DNS is updated is because the browser doesn’t have the ip address of your host. Most likely, your site would be on shared hosting. So typing in the ip address directly into your browser won’t work either. (Here is an interesting wallpaper on How Internet Works)

To get around this, you could use the Hosts File on your computer to manually specify the ip address. For most of you, the host file would be in:

System_Root_Folder\system32\drivers\etc\

i.e. for Windows NT onwards, including Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7. If its not there, or if you are on a MAC, refer to this page to find your hosts file.

Open the file named hosts in a notepad. You have to manually specify the ip address of your site. Add it as the last line to the file, in the following format:

<ip_address><tab><domain_name><tab><optional_sub_domain_name>

Example:

174.120.169.186    millionclues.com    www.millionclues.com

Save the file. The browser first checks the host file for the ip address, and since you have given it there, you will be taken to your website.

Obviously, your site will be available only one the computer where the hosts file is specified. Others will have to wait till the DNS change takes place. But you can start working on the back-end right away.

Related: Visit your Favorite Websites with a Single Character

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9 Comments.

  1. Rishi says:

    It’s been a while, Arun! Hope you’ve been doing well buddy.

    This is a pretty nifty trick. I remember purchasing my international domain name (.md) on a Friday and having to wait till the following Monday for the migration to complete… that was a very boring weekend. 😀

  2. Really useful Trick. Thanks for sharing.

    Arun.. It’s me Jijo.. we met each other at the Lunch Time.
    BTW Don’t forget to check out my Blog This time 😉
    Keep in touch

  3. Amal Roy says:

    Thanks bro. Very useful.

  4. I learned something new today. Thanks Arun.

    I think some hosts have this feature, you can see your blog’s preview before the DNS is updated! Am I wrong? or.. 😀

    • Some hosts yes, I have seen that. But if you have tried using them, you cant login to your wordpress dashboard using their preview (thinks so).

      Good to hear that :)

  5. Rohith VR says:

    nice one its very helpful tricks.. thanks for the sharing..

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