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Domain Setup with Amazon's Route 53 (Aws DNS)


To set up DNS hostnames for a deployment's load balancing and database tiers using Amazon Route 53 as the DNS provider.

Table of Contents


  • An AWS account with the Route 53 service enabled.  You must sign-up for the Route 53 service before you can create DNS hostnames.  (  It's free to sign-up for Route 53, but you'll be charged once you use the service.
  • A registered domain that you own and have access to modify DNS records with your registrar.  Note: You cannot register a domain with Amazon.

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Amazon offers their own DNS service for handling dynamic DNS hostnames on EC2.  Their same pay-as-you-go model applies to Route 53.  This service requires that you sign-up for the service before your AWS account is activated to use this feature.

Load Balancing Tier

If you are using dedicated cloud servers for load balancing purposes (e.g. RightScale's "Load Balancer with HAProxy" or "RightScale Load Balancer with Apache/HAProxy - 11H1" ServerTemplates), create a hostname for each frontend, load balancer server. Typically, you will have at least two load balancer servers for redundancy and failover purposes. You can either use Route 53 or another DNS provider of your choice since dynamic DNS is not required for the DNS records of the frontend load balancer servers.

If you are using dedicated cloud servers for load balancing purposes (e.g. RightScale's "Load Balancer with HAProxy" or "RightScale Load Balancer with Apache/HAProxy - 11H1" ServerTemplates), create an A record for each load balancer server. Typically, you will have at least two load balancer servers for redundancy and failover purposes. You can either use Route 53 or another DNS provider of your choice since dynamic DNS is not required for the DNS records of the frontend load balancer servers.

Database Tier 

The next step is to create hostnames for the database tier. Since the "master" database server can potentially change over time during an upgrade or failover scenario, it's important that the IP address associated with a database hostname be modifiable. Application servers connect to the "master" database server at boot time by using the hostname that points to the current "master" database server. (e.g.

For the 11H1 RightScript-based ServerTemplates, you will need to create a minimum of two (2) DNS hostnames, one for the Master-DB and one for the Slave-DB, where the TTLs are set to 60 (sec).

For the v12.11 Chef-based ServerTemplates, you will only need to create a DNS hostname for the Master-DB with a TTL set to 60 (sec).

The diagram below shows a common three tier setup with DNS records.

Reference Diagrams


If you are using RightScale's Load Balancer with HAProxy ServerTemplates to launch dedicated load balancers in EC2, assign Elastic IPs to the load balancer servers and create four DNS records.


Elastic Load Balancing

If you are using Amazon's Elastic Load Balancing (ELB) service, create a CNAME for the elastic load balancer and A records for the database tier.



Sign up for Amazon Route 53

Log into your AWS account and sign-up for Amazon's Route 53 DNS service.  (

Create Hostnames (DNS A Records)

See Amazon's Getting Started Guide:

  1. Log into the AWS Console and go to the Route 53 service page. (
  2. Click the Create a Hosted Zone button. Create a hosted zone for each domain that you want Route 53 to manage. Each hosted zone will be assigned a unique Hosted Zone ID. (e.g. Z3DSDFSDFXFW)
  3. Select a domain from the list and click the Go to Record Sets button.
  4. Click the Create Record Set button to create a hostname.

    Provide the following information and click Create Record Set.
    • Name: db-master
    • Type: Select 'A - IPv4 address'
    • Alias: Select 'No'
    • TTL (Seconds): You must select 1m (60 sec) for a database record. For A records that point to load balancer servers, you can use a higher TTL. (e.g. 300)
    • Routing Policy: Select 'Simple'
  5. Repeat the process to create the other DNS records.

Update Domain Name Server Records

Contact the company where you registered the domain name and update their Name Server Records so that they point to the domain name servers for Route 53.


Input Name Matrix

When you configure the deployment's inputs, specify the following information so that the scripts will be able to update the DNS hostnames inside Route 53. The names of the inputs are slightly different depending on whether you're using RightScale's RightScript-based (11H1) or Chef-based ServerTemplates.

Input Name - 11H1 (RightScripts) Input Name - v12, v13 (Chef) Example Value


DNS Service Provider

text: Route53


Database Master DNS Record ID


SLAVE_DB_DNSID Database Slave DNS Record ID (Optional)


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Last modified
12:36, 28 Jun 2013


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