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As friendly Canadians, the support team at CIRA loves to help. Here you can find information on commonly asked questions regarding your domain name or other CIRA products and services:

.CA domains

How can I register a .CA domain name?

Registering a .CA domain name is quick and easy! Learn more about how to register a .CA domain.

How do I renew my .CA domain name?

To renew your .CA domain name, contact your Registrar. Don't know who your Registrar is?

Who is my Registrar?

If you registered a .CA domain name, you either registered with a .CA Registrar or reseller*. In order to determine which Registrar a specific domain name was registered with, please do the following:

  1. Go to WHOIS.
  2. Enter the domain name you need information about into the .CA search bar.
  3. Find out who the Registrar is under the Registrar information section.

View contact information for .CA Registrars if you wish to get in contact with them.

* If you cannot find the name of the company you purchased the domain name from, you may have registered the domain with a reseller - a business that is not accredited directly with CIRA. They work through and adhere to the same standards as our valued partners.

What is a domain reseller?

A reseller is a third-party company that sells domains through a Registrar. If you registered your domain name through a reseller and do not know how to contact them, contact the Registrar and inform them that you purchased your .CA through a reseller.

I renewed my domain name with my Registrar but the status still shows as Auto-Renew Grace. Why?

CIRA automatically renews all .CA domain names on their expiry date. When the renewal is complete, the domain enters the Auto-Renew Grace period.

During this Auto-Renew Grace period, the Registrar has the option to delete the domain name if they haven’t been paid for the renewal. If the domain name is not deleted, the Auto-Renew Grace period will run its full length (45 days), before returning to the registered stage of life.

If a Registrar deletes the domain name, it will then be sent to the Redemption Grace Period, the final stage of life (30 days). If a domain name is not renewed in this final stage of life, it will fully expire and be put on the To Be Released (TBR) list.

Can I renew all of my .CA domains on the same day?

The date your domain name expires cannot be changed. Your domain name can be registered for up to 10 years into the future. Regardless of the registration term, your domain name will always expire on the same month and day.

Many domain-related requests are resolved through your Registrar, not the Registry (CIRA). For requests including transferring a domain or updating the contact information associated with your domain, please contact your Registrar.

How can I update my domain and contact information?

CIRA does not make any changes to domain information. Please contact your Registrar or reseller for all domain changes, including updating contact information. Not sure of who your Registrar is?

Once you’ve contacted your Registrar, the changes you made to your information will be forwarded to us (the Registry) automatically, and our records will be updated accordingly.

The email I used when I registered my domain is not valid anymore, how can I update my information?

To update your contact information, including your email, please contact your Registrar. If you are experiencing issues with your Registrar, please contact CIRA Product Support at info@cira.ca or call 1-877-860-1411. When contacting CIRA Product Support, you will be required to verify your identity.

The changes I made at my Registrar are not appearing in WHOIS. Why?

Contact your Registrar to confirm that your updates have been completed correctly within their system. Your Registrar can confirm the updates were performed correctly, and when the updates will be sent to the CIRA system.

How can I contact the registrant of a .CA domain?

Use the following Message Delivery Form to send an email to the registrant you would like to contact. Upon completing the form, your message will be forwarded to the registrant’s Administrative contact email address as provided by the registrant. CIRA cannot guarantee that messages will be delivered, read and/or responded to.

How do I transfer my domain name to a new Registrar?

  1. Contact your current Registrar about two items:
    i) Request the authorization code (some Registrars may call it an EPP code) for your domain name. Once you make this request, your Registrar must provide you the code within five days. The request for the Authorization code must be made from the Administrative contact’s email address listed on the domain profile. If you do not receive the code within five days, please let us know.
    ii) Check that your domain name is not locked. Locks prevent changes from being made to your domain name.
  2. Once you receive your Authorization code, contact your new Registrar to request a transfer.

To avoid any issues, we recommend you get in touch with your new Registrar of choice as soon as possible and have the authorization code ready.

Please note you will not be able to transfer the domain again for another 60 days. Why not?

How can I check if my domain is locked and cannot be transferred?

Domain names can be locked to protect against unauthorized changes. To see if your domain is locked, follow these steps:

  1. Go to WHOIS.
  2. Enter the domain name you need information about into the .CA search bar.
  3. Under Registrar Status, if the field lists “TransferProhibited” then this means the domain is locked and cannot be transferred.

If you would like the domain lock to be removed, contact your Registrar.

My Registrar has not provided me with my Authorization code, what are my options?

To obtain the Authorization code for your domain you must submit an Authorization code request from the administrative email address listed in your domain profile. The Registrar must provide the Authorization code within five calendar days of the valid request and must remove any Registrar locks applied on the domain name.

Should you not receive the Authorization in five calendar days, you can escalate the request with CIRA. Send an email to info@cira.ca, include all emails associated with the Authorization code request and include the subject line "Authorization Code Request." CIRA will then work with the Registrar directly and provide you with a follow-up.

Why is my transfer to a new Registrar not going through?

Ensure you have the correct Authorization code and that you are entering the code accurately. Contact your current Registrar to ensure that no transfer locks have been applied to the domain. The Registrar you are transferring to, should be able to provide you with the reason the transfer is failing; this will also help resolve the issue.

Can I transfer my domain while in Redemption Grace Period?

Yes, provided the Administrative contact’s email address is valid and operational. This address must receive the code needed to transfer Registrars, and if the address is outdated it cannot be updated when the domain is in the Redemption period. To transfer the domain, you must first request the Authorization code from your current Registrar and ensure that no transfer locks are applied to the domain. Once you have obtained your Authorization code, provide it to your new Registrar of choice and the transfer will take place.

How long does it take to transfer Registrars?

The transfer is instantaneous once the new Registrar submits the request to CIRA, provided the domain name is unlocked and the Authorization code is correct. You must contact your new Registrar to confirm when they will attempt your transfer request.

How do I transfer ownership of my domain name?

To make changes to your Registrant name or domain name ownership you must contact your Registrar. If you want to transfer the domain name to another individual or entity, simply inform your Registrar that you want to transfer the ownership of said domain name, and they will explain the required steps to take.

How can I register a To Be Released (TBR) domain name?

If you would like to register a domain name that is currently in the TBR stage of life, you can contact a CIRA Certified Registrar that participates in the TBR process or offers a .CA domain name backorder service. Please note that not all CIRA Certified Registrars participate in the TBR process or provide backorder services. Learn more about TBR and Registrars that participate.

How can I register a Municipal domain name?

To apply for a reserved municipal .CA domain name you must complete the Certificate of Authorization to Apply for Registration of a Municipal Name. You must ensure that this form is completed properly and submitted to your Registrar of choice on the municipality’s letterhead. This form must be completed by an employee or officer of the municipality. The Administrative contact must also be a direct employee or officer of the municipality.

Can I register a third-level domain name (i.e., domain.on.ca)?

Apart from registering municipal domain names, third and fourth-level domain name registrations are no longer offered as of September 28, 2010.

Why does the domain name I want to register conflict with another?

Third-level domain names (domain.on.ca) were discontinued as of 2010. When this occurred, CIRA reserved all top level .CA domain names (domain.ca) that corresponded directly with a registered third-level domain. To register a .CA domain name that conflicts with a third-level, the requestor must ensure that they are the legal holder of all conflicting domains (should more than one be registered—I.e.,  domain.bc.ca, domain.on.ca). Furthermore, the request must be submitted through the sponsoring Registrar of the existing registration for the third-level domain name.

What happens when my domain expires?

Upon the domain’s expiry date, CIRA will automatically renew your .CA domain for one year, charging your Registrar. You will need to renew the domain with your Registrar if you want to keep it. Your Registrar can cancel this renewal if you haven't renewed your domain with them. Learn more about domain expiration and the domain name life cycle.

Expiry dates for .CA domains can be found by searching WHOIS. If it's past your expiry date with your Registrar, you will notice that the WHOIS record for your domain has changed to one year after the expiry date.

How can I register a domain name that has expired?

Once a domain has completely gone through the domain name life cycle and was not picked up during the To Be Released process, it is returned to general registration. Contact a Registrar of your choosing and follow their process to register an available domain.

Where do I log a complaint about a .CA domain name that is not Canadian?

All complaints are to be sent to compliance@cira.ca and should include all relative information pertaining to your complaint, including the domain name and a detailed description of the issue.

What do I do if I can’t reach my Registrar?

Should you have difficulties reaching your Registrar, ensure that you have the correct contact information. View our full list of .CA Certified Registrars to find the correct contact information for your Registrar. If your Registrar is not listed, contact CIRA Product Support at info@cira.ca or call 1-877-860-1411.

If you are waiting on a request from your Registrar and have not received a reply within 48 hours, you can contact info@cira.ca and CIRA will work with your Registrar to address your request. Please include any relevant materials (i.e. emails) as an attachment to your request.

I forgot the password to my Registrar account, and my email has changed, what can I do?

The Registrant of the domain name must contact their Registrar or service provider to inquire about the validation process required to receive the login information for the account.

How do I transfer hosting companies?

Transferring hosting companies involves changing the DNS or name servers associated with your domain name at your Registrar. The new hosting company will provide you with the new DNS values to apply to your domain name.

Tip: to guarantee there is no downtime with your website or email, ask your new hosting company what you can do to ensure the transition is seamless.

How can I remove the 60-day lock from my domain name?

A 60-day lock is applied to new domain name registrations and when transferring a domain from one Registrar to another. When applied, the lock prevents the domain name from being transferred from one Registrar to another and cannot be removed early. If the account is locked for any other reason, please contact your Registrar.

How can I remove CIRA Privacy from my .CA domain name?

Contact your Registrar or reseller to add/remove CIRA privacy settings. CIRA applies Privacy by default to all .CA domain names registered to individuals.

How can I update my DNS / Host names?

Contact your Registrar or service provider for information on how to update your DNS/Host names.  The changes must be completed within their system and will then be forwarded to the .CA registry system.

If I am using my own name servers, how do they get applied to my domain?

When operating your own domain name server, you must first register it with CIRA;  you can then apply the server to a .CA domain name. If the name server uses a .CA domain name, the Registrar managing that domain must create the record with CIRA. If your name server ends with any other extension, any CIRA Registrar may create the record for you.

How can I further secure my domain?

Always keep your Registrar account information safe (username and password).  You may want to ask your Registrar if they offer a multi-factor authentication process so they can validate all change requests using multiple methods of authentication.

The strongest security for your .CA domain is through .CA Registry Lock. This service will implement locks on your domain name that only the Registry (CIRA) can remove. This means that no changes can be made on the domain name unless an authenticated request was received by CIRA from your Registrar. Please inquire with your Registrar about the .CA Registry Lock product.

My domain renewed automatically but I didn’t want it to. Can I get my money back?

All billing is managed by your Registrar. You will need to contact them directly for this inquiry.

How can I turn off auto-renew? 

Auto-renewals are controlled by your Registrar. Contact your Registrar and work with them to ensure your billing options are managed and set to your preference.

CIRA DNS Firewall

In order to troubleshoot Firewall issues we normally gather the following information:

Verify Outbound IPs:

In order to ensure all traffic is sent through DNS Firewall and is resolving properly, all outgoing IP addresses need to be entered into our Firewall configuration for each account.

  1. Contact your Network Administrator to verify all IP address information for all egress points for web traffic from your network.
  2. Our proxy server is not an open resolver, it will only resolve queries for clients using known IP addresses. Please browse to http://www.whatsmyip.org/ using a computer that is experiencing issues resolving webpages and provide us the IP address displayed or a screen capture of the page.
  3. Contact your Network Administrator to perform a dig for the URL in question.

CIRA Anycast DNS

How do I run a health check?

Run a health check to confirm that the Zone is being transferred, that there are no network interruptions (ex. firewalls blocking traffic) and the serial number is greater on the primary (your zone), then the secondary (backup).

  1. Login to D-Zone Portal - https://portal.d-zone.ca
  2. Find the Zone you are having a problem with, or select all Zones in a problem state.
  3. Use the stethoscope icon under Zone Status, next to the colored icon, to run the health check.
  4. Select “Run All” in the troubleshooting panel.
  5. Results will appear in the “Test Report” section.
  6. If all activity is Green, congratulations, all is well!
  7. If any activity is Red, please proceed to the How do I check serial numbers, and what are the IP’s to configure alerts and the monitoring server?

How do I check serial numbers?

Serial numbers determine whether or not a Zone is updated. For a Zone to transfer, the serial number on the originating side needs to be incremented higher than what the Zone already has. (Ex. 1: Originating Zone Serial Number: 72; D-Zone Serial Number: 72. No transfer will occur. Originating Zone Serial Number: 85; D-Zone Serial Number: 72. A transfer will occur.) The transfer will update the D-Zone Serial number to the originating one.

  1. Select the view button in the details column.
  2. Select the Retrieve button next to Transfer History button.
  3. Any easy way to check if any Serial Numbers have been updated is to put “transferred serial” in the Text: box.

How do I configure to send notifies and allow zone transfers?

D-Zone has four hidden masters that customers need to configure to send notifies and allow zone transfers. Please ensure your DNS settings are updated to use all four hidden masters.

Hidden master number IPv4 Address IPv6 Address
D-Zone Hidden Master 1 162.219.53.35 2620:10a:80d1:1053::135
D-Zone Hidden Master 2 162.219.53.235 2620:10a:80d4:1053::135
D-Zone Hidden Master 3 162.219.52.35 2620:10a:80d1:1053::235
D-Zone Hidden Master 4 162.219.52.235 2620:10a:80d4:1053::235

The Monitoring Server needs to be set to “Allow query” so D-Zone can properly report the Zone Status.

D-Zone Monitoring Server:
162.219.53.178 (IPv4)
2620:10a:80d4:1090::100 (IPv6)

When testing D-Zone the first check is to click the “Health Check” stethoscope.

SOA test failure: Ensure allow query is set for the monitoring server.

Connectivity test failure: Ensure firewall access has been granted for the listed hidden masters.

Zone transfer failure: Please confirm the serial number is higher than the current one in D-Zone.

How do I modify alert and notification settings in the D-Zone portal?

In order to maintain your Zone Transfers, and to be alerted if there are problems, D-Zone Support recommends turning on the Alert setting in your D-Zone Profile.

  1. Log into the D-Zone Portal.
  2. Select the Profile Tab (Please contact Support if you don’t see the Profile Tab)
  3. Select the Alert Settings Tab.
  4. Set the “Email for Zone Expire” to the email you’d like to receive the alerts at.
  5. Set the Alert Interval for how frequently you’d like to be notified if there is a problem.
  6. Set the Alert Users to determine list of users that will receive alerts when new zone traffic events occur.

This will help in being able to self-manage your Zone Transfers and ensure they are available.

Other/General Inquiry

Please contact us.