VPS Domain not directing properly/being rejected by server?

James Gryphon

Dec 13, 2018
I help out with a forum with their own server, and somehow along the way we've apparently managed to make a pretty mess of things.

It'd been working normally for several months, but around Monday, the domain ceased directing traffic to the forum page. The IP address for the site and server still work fine, we still have FTP access and all of that -- it's just the domain that's broken.

At first I guessed that it might be a problem with the nameserver selection for the domain, which we don't actually own (a third party has it and configures it for us as needed) but we've been experimenting with a second test domain and it doesn't seem to be doing any better.

Google Chrome reports that "the server IP address could not be found." A curl in my terminal says that it "couldn't resolve the host". I don't remember the setup process for connecting the domain to the server, it not being something I do very often, but I don't remember it being that hard. They say that it normally should be as simple as pointing the domain to a couple of nameservers. So I'm guessing the issue may not be the domain, but something in the server software's setup.

The server workers were experimenting with Fail2Ban and different iptables configurations at some point before the trouble. Those have been turned off or even flushed, though, and the problem persisted. I actually temporarily shut off the firewall at some point in case that might possibly have anything to do with it, but there wasn't any effect with that either. It's safe to say we're at something of a loss at this point.

If anybody has any advice or suggestions for what to look at to start debugging this symptom, it'd be appreciated. Even a clue where to look would help. Thanks in advance for any suggestions y'all can make. If you need more information please ask and I'll tell you what I can.

If it helps, the hosting and nameservers are provided by Hostwinds.


Feb 20, 2007
Its not pointing the domain to name servers, its pointing name servers to the domain(s). Most people have name servers handled either by their domain registrar or cpanel on their hosting. If you can share the domain name I can find out what the name servers are, so you can log in where that is and handle it.