How do i add glue records?

i need to add glue records to my domain registration

not custom dns - glue records

That shouldn’t be necessary. If Cloudflare is your registrar, that means you’re trying to use vanity name servers, such as on a Business or Enterprise plan. Cloudflare will automatically add those glue records.

I’m not on a business or enterprise plan. I just want ns1 and ns2.mydomain.com to point to one of my servers.

You can certainly add regular NS records to your DNS page, but you won’t be able to use them for the ‘mydomain’ without a Business or Enterprise plan. You don’t need glue records to use ns1.mydomain.com as name servers for someotherdomain.com

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I need glue records for my nameservers on my domain. Godaddy will not allow me to use ns1 and ns2.mydomain.com unless I have glue records / child hosts. I’m not looking for custom nameservers or nameserver hosting here. I just need glue records / child hosts which is done at the registrar level. Have tried to get this done multiple times.

Hi @us13, happy to help as I have some experience in this area.

This is going to get a bit long, and some of this is stuff you probably know, but I want to explain both glue records and nameserver registration as they are closely related concepts in most registrar interfaces, but very different things “under the hood”, and not everyone reading this now or in the future might be familiar with the various things.

I’ll put a line across my message later on where I stop rambling about glue records and explain what I think you need, which is actually nameserver registration.


Glue Records

A glue record is only needed when you are resolving nameservers that are themselves under the domain in question, which will not the be the case because this is only possible on a Business or Enterprise plan.

For example, to resolve www.cloudflare.com I need the IP addess(es) for ns1.cloudflare.com (or one of the other similarly numbered nameservers), but to resolve ns1.cloudflare.com I need to first resolve… cloudflare.com, so we have a loop. Glue records bootstrap a solution to this problem and break the loop by providing me with the IP address(es) of the cloudflare.com nameservers that themselves under cloudflare.com when telling me that cloudflare.com's nameservers are ns1.cloudflare.com.

When using dig these will show up in the additional section, but only when querying the gTLD servers for NS records. A neat example is that if we ask 'a.gtld-servers.netforeasydns.com`'s NS records we get:

;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
easydns.com.            172800  IN      NS      dns3.easydns.org.
easydns.com.            172800  IN      NS      dns1.easydns.com.
easydns.com.            172800  IN      NS      dns2.easydns.net.
easydns.com.            172800  IN      NS      dns4.easydns.info.

We only need glue for dns1.easydns.com here because it is the only nameserver that itself is under easydns.com, but the other nameservers are on other gTLDs so you can just resolve those hosts normally. So when we look in the additional section, this is all we see:

;; ADDITIONAL SECTION:
dns1.easydns.com.       172800  IN      AAAA    2400:cb00:2049:1::a29f:1835
dns1.easydns.com.       172800  IN      A       64.68.192.10

Similarly, if you wanted to resolve cloudflare.ca the TLD root just tells me thomas.ns.cloudflare.com and vita.ns.cloudflare.com and leaves me to figure out the rest. No glue is needed as my resolver will just go through the necessary motions to work through cloudflare.com.

Now, it is possible that you need a glue record for a subdomain. For example, if I am example.com I could delegate x.example.com to ns1.x.example.com and need glue to get out of the loop.

But this only applies if you intend to delegate a subdomain of your domain to nameservers and those nameservers happen to themselves be under the subdomain itself.

The other reason I don’t think that this is your issue is that at the DNS level, glue records are really just A and AAAA records, so there actually isn’t a lot special that needs to be done, this “just works”.


Nameserver Registration

What I think is actually happening is that you need to register nameservers, and I don’t think Cloudflare can do this at this time.

Registering nameservers is closely linked to glue records in the domain registration control panels of most registrars but under the hood it is quite different. Glue records are a technical requirement (to solve the bootstrapping issue), nameserver registration is only an administrative requirement (nothing goes in the TLD zone files when you register a nameserver). Nameserver registration serves a different need, mostly preventing user error.

Unfortunately, I don’t see any way in Cloudflare’s registrar interface (nor the APIs) to register nameservers, and with such a tiny minority of domains ever doing this, I don’t expect to see it in the near future.

In fact, I have a domain that I now host on Cloudflare, but I have kept the registration elsewhere because I use my own nameservers on this domain to host other domains, which I believe is the situation that you are encountering.

As for where to go from here, well, if you happen to be on a paid plan then you might be able to open a support ticket, but I actually don’t think you’ll get very far as I don’t believe that this is something Cloudflare offers at all (therefore the support rep who answers the ticket won’t be trained on this topic, nor is there likely to be a procedure in place). I could be wrong.

If you happen to be an Enterprise customer then you might be able to get this escalated. It may still end up being something that Cloudflare just doesn’t offer. You may end up having to do what I did and keep this particular domain registered elsewhere at a provider that has a more complete interface.

If you are at least a Pro customer and can open a ticket, link to this thread in your ticket, it might increase the odds of getting this done for you. And if you mention the ticket number here, I’ll pass it along to someone that can add some notes.

To be clear, I am not a Cloudflare employee – But, I did run a small hosting provider in the past, and I still run my own nameserver and host some stuff for friends and family, so I have this same configuration.

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