Domain Name Management Software: Transition to RDAP

The Registration Data Access Protocol, or RDAP, is soon going to replace the traditional port 43 Whois. Once RDAP has been deployed, ICANN no longer requires gTLD registries to provide a port 43 whois service. However, most registries are expected to do this in a phased manner .

All the current versions of our software products will be updated before the end of the year to support RDAP.

RDAP

What this means

Are you using older (major) versions of the software? Once the registries and registrars fully transition to the RDAP and abandon the port 43 Whois, you will no longer be able to retrieve domain related information using your version of the software.

To be able to continue using the software you will have to purchase an upgrade to the latest major version.

The transition to RDAP will not affect the domains that are managed using registrar APIs.

When will this happen?

Registries and registrars are likely to begin providing more information about their plans to phase out the port 43 service in due course. This will happen after the current Registry Agreement (RA) and Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) are amended. As per an ICANN blog post negotiations have been initiated to begin this process and to define a coordinated transition from the WHOIS protocol to RDAP.

GDPR and its Effects

GDPR is almost here and here is a quick note about how it might affect our domain name management tools.

The effects of GDPR will depend on what you have been using the software for. There shouldn’t be any issues if you have been using it to manage your own domains. The technical data will continue to be available as part of port 43 lookups. You can still monitor the expiry dates, name servers, MX records, SSL data etc.

Monitoring the technical data related to your domains is going to be more important in the post GDPR world because there is likely to be a higher incidence of domain thefts in the short term. Some registrars have already started adding security features because of GDPR.

The personal information will most likely disappear from whois. This has already happened for many TLDs / registrar whois outputs. For example, the personal information was already not available for domains that use proxy addresses, many ccTLDs and even the new TLDs like .APP. GoDaddy has been masking some information for a while now.

You can use registrar APIs instead of port 43 whois to obtain the data for your domains. Please see below.

Changes to Transfer Process

The domain transfer process (from one registrar to another) will be undergoing some changes because the gaining registrar will no longer be able to lookup the email addresses. So it is even more important to keep an eye on your name servers, associated IP addresses and domain dates.

Use Registrar APIs instead of Whois

You can use registrar APIs to import domains and obtain the domain information. Currently GoDaddy, Namecheap, Dynadot and Resellerclub are supported. Please see

Registrar API Support

for more details. We are hoping to add support for more registrars.

If you use a registrar and they don’t provide an API for customers, you should probably contact them and request them politely to consider doing so.

Registrar API Setup

API Whois Script for GoDaddy Domains

It has become very difficult to obtain registrar data for domains registered at GoDaddy because most of the important information is hidden if you do more than a few port 43 whois lookups using whois.godaddy.com.

We have released a simple API based script for obtaining the data for your own domains registered at GoDaddy.  You can use this along with any of our domain management software tools.

Please Note:  This will work only for your own domains registered at GoDaddy. You can’t use it to find data for domains that belong to other people.

Please see knowledge base article: GoDaddy Whois API

GoDaddy API Whois Script

How to Extract Data into Custom Columns in Watch My Domains Server / Cloud Edition

Watch My Domains SED supports unlimited number of custom data columns.  You can also automatically extract data into these columns after a whois lookup.

Global Extraction Tokens

Global extraction tokens are strings present in raw whois text that identify the data you want to extract. You should first identify the extract string tokens that you want to use. You can find more details here.

If the raw whois contains

Registrant Organization: ABCD Inc

and you want to extract ABCD Inc into a custom column called Registrant Org, you will need to create global tokens similar to

[*]=>*
Registrant Organization:=>registrant_org

(The database field for Registrant Org will be registrant_org. You can convert column names to field names by making everything lowercase and replacing blank spaces with underscore).

The first line

[*]=>*

is always needed to load the default parse table. 

To add global extraction tokens, click the ‘Whois Setup’ button in the sidebar and open the ‘Extraction’ tab. Type in * as the whois server and click ‘Go’.  Then specify the extraction tokens and click ‘Submit Changes’.

Global Extraction Tokens

What is Domain-Pad in Domain Punch Pro and Other Desktop Software?

Domain Punch Pro and other Windows desktop software products for domain name portfolio management include a domain-pad option.  So what is it really for?

There may be times when you just want to remember a list of domain names without actually adding them to your portfolio or doing the regular whois lookups.

The domain scratch pad (also known as Domain Pad) is an option to hold a set of domain names separate from your portfolio.  These domain names will not have any lookup options (it is just a scratch pad).

One example use would be domains you let go and decided not to renew. You can right click in your portfolio list and use the export option to send them to “Domain pad”. After that you an delete them from your portfolio. The “domain pad” will still hold the domains without future lookups.

Domain-pad panel in Domain Punch Pro

Historical Whois Data Logging in Watch My Domains ISP

You can now log and keep track of your old raw whois records in Watch My Domains ISP.

Normally Watch My Domains ISP will overwrite the currently logged whois record whenever you perform a new whois lookup. We have added an option in “App Settings” to preserve the older data.

Historical Whois Data Logging in Watch My Domains ISP

 

Watch My Domains ISP is a powerful domain name portfolio manager for Windows with a database back-end (MS Jet or MS SQL), multi-user support, SQL based display, lookups & more. Use it to manage large to huge domain name portfolios belonging to multiple clients.

You can download a trial version from here. Existing customers can download the latest build from the customer download area.

Watch My Domains for Mac OS X Updated

We have updated Watch My Domains for Mac OS X to add support for automatic whois configuration.

Automatic whois configuration

The software will now automatically do a whois setup when you add a domain with a TLD that has not yet been configured. You no longer have to do manual configurations or wait for a software update. With so many new TLDs becoming available, manually configuring each TLD is not a viable option anymore. This feature will make managing domains a lot more easy.

This feature is already available in the Windows and Web Server editions of our domain manager software products.

Watch My Domains for Mac OS X
Watch My Domains for Mac OS X

Download Now

You will have to wait a few days for the download link to be available in the Apple Mac store.

Domain Name Management Software

WatchMy.Domains features a number of applications to manage domain names From Windows & Mac Desktop or web browser. Please see the product comparison table.