Bundling of Domain Names and DNAME
segred at ics.forth.gr
Thu Dec 3 16:56:14 CET 2009
Dear Members of the DNSEXT WG,
My name is Vaggelis Segredakis and I am the Administrator of the Registry of
the .gr ccTLD.
Since 2005 the .gr registry has provided our registrants with the option to
register domain names in Greek characters, according to the IDNA2003
translation of IDN characters to Latin characters. Due to the design of this
protocol, it has been necessary for the registry to bundle domain names that
in Greek represent the same word but in the IDNA2003 the representation is
different PUNYCODE domain names. To reduce the cost of the use of these
domain names, the registry bundles them (with the use of DNAME) in the .gr
zone file. We strongly believe that the IDNA protocol should help to ease
the use of the domain names and not to present new obstacles to the end
users who should not be blamed if the domain name was typed in small or
capital letters. I do not wish to burden you with details but if you wish a
more elaborate analysis of the issues presented in the IDNA protocols for
domain names in Greek characters please refer to my presentations:
Bundling these domain names with DNAME seemed like a good choice but there
is an issue that this way of bundling does not solve:
If you have the domain name xn-1234.gr and you bundle it with xn-5678.gr
everything is fine - if you try to visit www.xn--5678.gr; you will be
redirected to www.xn--1234.gr. The same applies if you use ns1.xn-1234.gr;
it equals to ns1.xn-5678.gr. However, if you try to email user1 at xn--5678.gr
it will never arrive at user1 at xn--1234.gr because this bundling starts from
the next level and thus xn-1234.gr<>xn-5678.gr. The source of the problem I
am going to ask you to resolve is there.
Recently, as a member of the discussion of the IDNABIS WG I tried to help
resolving these issues by explaining them to that group. However that group
is not free to completely re-design the IDNA protocol to something else but
rather with small steps to reform it to something with fewer issues.
Unfortunately, on this process, one of the changes that are implemented lead
to even more names that have to be bundled together for each registrant.
This makes it even more significant to break this chain of cost for the end
I ask you as a WG to either consider changing DNAME to include the first
layer and this way allow emails to be sent to user1 at xn--5678.gr and to be
delivered to user1 at xn--1234.gr or to present in DNS a new command that works
like DNAME with the upper layer included, let's call it xNAME for now. By
presenting this xNAME you will allow the registries to bundle domain names
in a consistent way that has full functionality for the end user who will be
able to receive emails, view web pages, FTP e.t.c. using domain names in his
language without having to adapt a new protocol. This should be an
undisputable right for all the users who do not use the Latin alphabet, the
same as it is for Latin alphabet users.
I will be happy to answer any questions you might have on my request. I
would be even happier if this revision of the DNS was to be presented along
with IDNA2008 adoption from the IETF so that the registries that really need
this bundling are ready to use these new protocols simultaneously for the
benefit of the end users.
Administrator of the .GR Top Level Domain
Institute of Computer Science
Foundation for Research and Technology - Hellas
Email segred at ics.forth.gr
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