Yes I know what it sounds like – another scam about getting free domain names right? Wrong – see there are actually several companies out there who literally give out domain names – granted these are not .com’s – but they are better than http://angelfire.com/users/~johnswebsite. This post aims to outline the various services out there for free domain names and what they offer.
Last Updated: November 9, 2012.
We’ll start with probably the most popular one out there today, DotTK. DotTK offers free .tk domain names, as well as paid .tk domain names ($6.95/year). The free domain’s come with a twist though – a Free .TK Domain automatically expires when it does not receive the required minimum of 25 unique visitors during the previous 90 day period. DotTK supports frame redirects, and also allows you to use your own name servers to seamlessly integrate your .TK domain into your website. DotTK also offers their own DNS service in-case you’d rather use that. If you do not set your website to properly redirect or if the DNS is still updating your .TK domain will display a parking page with advertisements.
.CO.CC follows next – and one of the most unique features they offer is complete support for international domain names. Want ????.co.cc? No problem. CO.CC also supports Windows Live Custom Domains, integration with Google Apps, as-well as Blogger custom domains. There are absolutely no ads for .CO.CC domains either. CO.CC also offers their own free DNS service with full NS, MX, A and CNAME records. To boot .CO.CC domains are geotargetable – allowing you to use Google Webmaster Tools to specifically target any specific country to display your website listings for.
CC.CZ is another good free CC domain. The CZ prefix does imply Czech Republic, but registration is in no way limited to other users, and their domains are accessible world-wide. As opposed to CO.CC and CO.TV, they allow free short 3-character domains; many are still available, sograb yours now! You can also register their free domains for two years in a batch, so that relieves you of one more thing to worry about anytime soon. Domain renewal is always free, of course!
.CO.NR is a great free domain name service with tons of features. They are completely ad-free with quick and simple integration with Google Webmaster Tools and Yahoo Site Explorer. They support URL forwarding, as well as Path forwarding – meaning yourwebsite.co.nr/folder will automatically redirect to angelfire.com/users/~yourwebsite/folder.
EU.ORG is one of free domain pioneers. Present since 1995, their free sub domain is intended for everyone, who cannot buy their own domain. Various county-code and functional sub domains are available. EU.ORG domain registration procedure seems a little challenging at first, but is actually really simple and fully automated. First you register an Administrative handle (yourself), and then you attach a domain to your handle via online form. You can also set NS and MX DNS records.
ZA NiC was created to provide free domain registration under ZA.NET and ZA.ORG to companies, not-for-profit organisations or private users who cannot afford the fees demanded by some domain name registrars or who simply believe that domain names should be a freely available resource for everyone. Registration of a subdomain of .za.net and .za.org is restricted to individuals and organisations with a presence in South Africa. Valid South African contact details are required to support the registration. You will also need to have your own nameservers setup and ready to use with your ZA.NET or ZA.ORG domain name as ZA NiC does not provide URL forwarding or their own DNS services.
.FREE is a fairly new service launched to support the change in TLD’s recently announced by ICANN. The purpose of .FREE is to create a fertile ground for companies, individuals and organizations to register their personal .FREE domain names. The dotFree Group s.r.o., an internet community with over 150’000 supporters world wide, will be responsible for managing the top-level domain .FREE. .FREE is 100% open and allows any person on the planet to register and use .FREE domains at no cost. Anyone in the world has an opportunity to build up their online identity by obtaining a unique .FREE domain name.
.CU.CC is another full featured free domain provider – offering full DNS service with MX, CNAME, A and SOA records. Furthermore they allow you to register up to 5 domain names per account. The interface is very simple and straightforward – and resembles most other free domain name providers. .CU.CC does however offer a ticket based support system for all of their customers.
.UNI.ME, a fairly new provider who launched in December 2011, is partnered with Microsoft to offer free domain names to students and educators. Members can register unlimited domain names per account – and the domains are set to never expire.
SmartDots offers several free domain names, each of which come with Full DNS management, 300MB of hosting space, no bandwidth limits, an email and an ftp account, along with full PHP + MySQL support with the hosting. This is as full-featured as it gets really.
FreeDNS offers 90,000+ free domain name options for you to choose between – easily the largest selection of any provider out there. This includes full DNS management – along with support for Dynamic DNS, Round Robin DNS, and robust support for CNAME, A, AAAA, MX, NS, TXT, LOC, RP, HINFO, SRV records.
Redirect.It offers a free url redirect service for webmasters, with a choice of 11 creative subdomain options.
Freeurl.cc is a Free Domain Name project that was developed to provide Free Domain Names or Free Subdomain of .Freeurl.cc domain name to those who wish to get a cool and free domain name, free subdomain or free short URL, that looks like a real paid domain name.