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What is DNS propagation and why it can take up to 48 hours?

What is DNS propagation?

To make viewing the web faster for their customers, Internet Service Providers cache all of their Domain Name System records. This caching process is called Propagation.

Caching means that the ISPs read and display websites from their local files instead of looking them up on the Internet each time their customers want to view a website. This is similar, on a massive scale, to the way the browser on your computer caches websites to speed up browsing.

Propagation ultimately speeds up web surfing by:

  • Speeding up the time it takes for a web browser’s website request to return.
  • Reducing the amount of traffic on the web, therefore running faster overall.

Why does propagation take so long?

The reason it takes so long for your, or any, website to be visible to everyone once you launch it is that each ISP has an automated process that updates and caches DNS records every few days. Until their cache is reset, it will not display your launched website. There isn’t any set standard for this process and they can set propagation time anywhere from a few hours up to 48.

Can I speed the process up?

Unfortunately, no. There is nothing that you, WPX Hosting, or anyone else can do to reduce DNS propagation time. It is simply a case of waiting for this automated process to complete itself.

Can I check how propagation is going?

You can monitor the progress of DNS propagation here. You can also install a browser extension to check from which hosting platform you are currently loading the website (like ShowIP, FlagFox, etc).

If have any other questions on the topic, please contact WPX Support via live chat (use the bottom right-hand widget) and they will respond and help within 30 seconds or less.

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