Moving to Cloudflare for an existing domain that uses Google Apps


I have an existing website at a domain that is also used for our corporate email and other Google apps integrations. The DNS hosting is currently handled by Rackspace, but I want to move the nameservers to point to CloudFlare to take advantage of the speed and security optimization. I think I have a pretty good handle on what is needed to ensure that the website continues to function, but the Google apps part isn’t as clear and it would be bad if people couldn’t send or receive email for even a minute. I didn’t initially set up the Google Apps account and do not have access to that panel. Web and IT are two separate departments at my company.

When I put the domain into CF, it appears that the necessary DNS records are being pulled in correctly. Is it really as seamless and updating the nameservers at the registrar from this point? Are there any other “gotcha’s” with Google Apps I should be aware of?

Thanks in advance.


Hi @eberger,

I am probably not the best person to answer this, but I will give you an idea of what I can. I use Google Apps on a domain I manage, however others probably have more experience of it than me.

Currently, I have the following MX records, you should have these (or similar), I have seen a few variations in different setups.

Depending on what you currently have setup, I also have a DKIM record

You may also have a subdomain set up for email login or other services?

Do you have access to the domain DNS records as they are currently are to check they all match?

There isn’t anything else that I did in Cloudflare, other than these DNS records to get Google Apps working…


Thanks @domjh . Yes, I have access to the DNS records and can verify that they all match. Looking for any specific config or setting within CF or Google Apps to update once the nameserver switch has been made. It sounds like there might not be anything.


No problem, if the DNS records all match then you should be good to go. I can’t see anything that could be an issue. It all worked OK for me when I did it :slightly_smiling_face:

Just check with your DNS records that anything that is on a non standard port, or not web traffic is set to :grey: and not :orange:. Other than that, can’t think of anything else that would need to be changed.

Maybe someone else can confirm! @cscharff? or I believe @judge uses Google Apps? (Given that this looks crucial, someone agreeing (or disagreeing) would probably be good!)


As far as I know the switch should be seamless provided the records match up. If they do simply switch and everything will be fine. Maybe set all records in doubt to :grey: and then evaluate afterwards.


I use every major mail platform at one point or another… sometimes by choice. :slight_smile:

Making the switch to Cloudflare for DNS.

  1. Get a BIND export from your Rackspace account team.
  2. Import into Cloudflare
  3. Confirm anything mail related is :grey: if there is a cloud option for that record type.
  4. Double-check the BIND file entries against the listing in Cloudflare.
  5. Repeat Step 4 backwards.
  6. Copy paste your new nameservers to your registrar to prevent typos (way more common than you might think).

Thank you for the input @matteo, @cscharff - didn’t want to say something that would cause a nightmare for @eberger :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thanks all! I will follow these steps and report back with any issues encountered. I am about a week away from making the transition.

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