I’m writing this primarily for myself. I’ll try to update it as I learn more.
I’ve used DreamHost for years, I have several domains there. Recently I created one for our mountain bike team - hpmtb.org. I set it up as “Fully Hosted” and created a few subdomains so I could create a subdomain like http://fb.hpmtb.org that would redirect to our Facebook site. (This is probably not the best way to do this, maybe better to use Apache URL rewrites with .htaccess)
I was even able to get a wiki.hpmtb.org subdomain to work properly with wikispaces.
That’s when I ran aground. I wanted the naked domain, or www.hpmtb.org to point to that same wiki page. As best I can tell, with DreamHost, you can’t do that through DNS or domain configuration. For one thing, www.domain.com and domain.com are treated by DreamHost as synonyms. You can’t really have them behave differently.
For another DreamHost, for a fully hosted domain, sets up a fixed type A DNS record to reference DreamHost’s IP address.
Can this be done for a DNS only configuration, with hosting disabled?
I think there’s a way to do it with Google Apps, in particular I’m pretty sure there’s a way to have a naked domain or www.domain reference a Google Site. I’m just not quite sure how to do it. Clues might be in these references ...
- DNS basics - Google Apps Help: Create blank A record for 188.8.131.52. Note Google then redirects www to gas.googlehosted.com
- Enable your "naked" domain address - Google Apps Help
- About CNAME records - Google Apps Help
- About A records - Google Apps Help
- Configure A records - Google Apps Help: check out the values and IPv6 support with AAAA
Phew. This is a tiring domain to explore. Not only is it fundamentally complex, the documentation is marginal (Google has the best, but it’s Google Apps specific) and experimentation is hard. It’s easy to mess up a domain, and changes can take time to propagate. There are lots of quirks; I discovered Chrome will cache DNS redirects, so if you make a change and Chrome doesn’t seem to know about it try incognito mode. Good luck!