Website Registration & Hosting Portal

In this article

About website registration & the hosting portal 

Registration purpose 

The information collected in the registry allows us to:

NOTE: In the future, unregistered websites may no longer be accessible from the Internet.


Sites that need to register

You must register if:


How to register a website

There are currently two different ways to register your website:

  1. Use the DIT Website Registry.
  2. Certain service requests will create a website registration record (or update one) for you, including:
    1. SSO and Enterprise Directory Integration Request form
    2. Active Directory Service Account Request form

After completing registration using either method, your entry will be visible from the Hosting Portal. You can update details and request new services from the Hosting Portal.


Using the website registry form


Using a service requests form (SSO & AD)


Registration & Hosting FAQ's

What is an alias URL (CNAME)? 

A Canonical Name Record (CNAME) is a type of resource record in the Domain Name System (DNS), that specifies that one domain name is an alias of another canonical domain name. For example, the website '' may have an 'A record' that points to an IP address such as '123.456.789'.  The full URL (including the 'www') may be a CNAME record that points from '' to ''. CNAME record aliases do not point to IP addresses directly. 

Remember that while and are the same site, the separate development environment (maybe '') is a different site and should be registered separately. 


What is the difference between the Modify Alias URLs and Register Existing Website options?

When adding an alias to an existing website, select the website from the list and click Modify Alias URLs. This adds new alias to the list of existing aliases. All aliases share the same record, including ownership and SSO/authentication information.  

When you click Register Existing Website you create a new website record that is separate from the others. For example, a development site (e.g. might not have the same SSO/authentication configured as the production site, or may have a different set of owners.  


Do I have to register sites hosted outside of campus by a third-party host?

All affiliated UMD domain names must be registered. This includes websites hosted outside of campus by third-parties, such as DIT's website.


I use a domain name to SSH into servers in our department from home, but they don't run websites. Should I still register?

No, only the domain names that host websites should be registered.


I have servers that run as many as 20 virtual hosts. The hosts may come and go as a research group or student requests a web server for a fixed period. Will registering IP addresses of the servers that handle multiple virtual hosts be sufficient?

Each virtual host that runs a website must be registered individually.


Renewal FAQ's

Do registered websites need to be renewed? How often?

Yes, many registered websites have an expiration date set that will trigger a renewal process.  Sites which do not have an expiration date populated yet will not expire.  Most sites need to renewed once per year, renewal reminders will start 30 days before expiration. 


How do I renew my site? 

I can't renew my site from the hosting portal? 

Some types of sites have their own renewal process that is different from the default hosting portal renewal process, and cannot be renewed from the hosting portal.