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Setting up domain mapping without breaking email

  1. I'm helping a friend who's considering setting up domain mapping for her organization.

    It looks like the domain mapping setup instructions are the following:
    1. Remap name servers to WordPress domain servers.
    2. Wait for DNS servers to propagate, which may take hours.
    3. Sign up for Domain Mapping.
    4. Finally... set up MX records using Custom DNS.

    Wouldn't mail be broken on that domain from Step 2 to the completion of Step 4? And the website broken until the completion of Step 3?

    I'm sure it's easy to set up, but things can go wrong. And while WordPress is waiting for the new DNS settings to propagate to them, people's mail may be bouncing.

    Surely, there should be a way to set up the custom DNS records *before* switching name servers. The "we're not going to let you set anything up until you point the nameservers at us" policy seems dangerous and short-sighted.

    Am I missing something here? Is the only way to use domain mapping without breaking email to map a subdomain instead of the domain itself?

  2. When I moved onto WordPress.COM and mapped the domain I pointed the name servers then mapped the domain - WordPress.COM is supposed to do some error checking on the mapping which is why the name servers need to be changed first.

    I only waited a couple of minutes between changing the name servers and the mapping.

    Once the mapping is done it can take 24 to 72 hours for changes to migrate to the far corners of the internet - changes usually start in a few hours. I was told by visitors and sites linking to mine that they did not notice a problem - just my site looked a bit different.

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