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Set up Google Workspace with a third-party DNS host

To verify your domain and set up email with Google Workspace, you update your domain’s DNS records. These custom DNS records are typically hosted by your domain host (typically where you purchased your domain).

If your domain host service package doesn’t allow you to create new DNS records, you can use a third-party DNS host. Several DNS hosting services, such as and FreeDNS, offer custom DNS hosting at no cost, in addition to paid advanced DNS features.

How it works (optional)

Your domain host uses custom DNS records to direct website traffic, email, and other internet requests to your domain. For example, MX records route your domain’s email through servers hosted by an email provider.

Google Workspace gives you a unique DNS record to add to your domain. Google detects this record and verifies your domain ownership.

Your domain’s DNS records are typically hosted by your domain host (where you purchased your domain). If you can’t edit these records at your domain host, you can move them to a third-party DNS host. Your email and website aren't affected, but you must move all of your DNS records to your new DNS host.

Update your DNS records

These steps describe how to move your DNS records to another domain host, and then verify your domain and set up Gmail.

The example host is, which provides several DNS services, including limited, free DNS hosting. Several other domain hosts offer similar features, and the setup steps are similar.

Step 1. Create your ClouDNS account
  1. Go to and create a new account.
  2. Sign in to your dashboard.
  3. Next to DNS Zones, click Add new.
  4. Click Master zone.
  5. In the Domain name field of the New domain window, enter your Google Workspace domain name, for example,, and click Create.

    A table opens with your domain’s DNS records. It should only list NS (nameserver) records. Keep this window open.

Step 2. Copy DNS records to ClouDNS

Make sure you have your sign-in credentials for your domain host. You can identify your domain host if you’re not sure who it is.

  1. In a new window, sign in to your domain host.
  2. Go to your domain’s DNS records. You might access them in your domain’s control panel or cPanel. Visit your domain host’s support page for more help.

    If you have any existing DNS records hosted on your domain host (not on ClouDNS), copy them from your domain host to your ClouDNS account. You must copy all DNS records for your domain to stay fully functional.

  3. From your domain host’s window, cut and paste any additional DNS records from your domain host to your ClouDNS account. Use the tabs in the ClouDNS table to switch between DNS record types (A, AAAA, MX, TXT, CNAME, and so on).
Step 3. Change your domain host's NS records
  1. In your domain’s records, if there are any existing NS records for your domain, delete them all.
  2. Return to the ClouDNS table in the previous window.
  3. In the Points to column, copy the NS record from the first line.

  4. Back in your domain host window, paste the NS record into your DNS records.
  5. Repeat steps 3–4 for all NS records and save your changes.

    Your DNS records are now hosted at ClouDNS (your domain host's NS records table may look different).

  6. Make sure all of your services work (it can take up to 24 hours for DNS records to update).
  7. Close the domain host window, but keep the ClouDNS window open.
Step 4. Domain verification

Once your DNS records are copied, verify your domain with Google Workspace.

  1. Find your ​Google Workspace​ TXT verification record.
  2. In the ClouDNS window, create a new TXT record and paste the Google Workspace verification record in the Points to field.
  3. Save the record.
  4. In the Google Admin console window, click Verify.

Note: You must keep your NS records at your new domain host while you use Google Workspace. If you switch your NS records back to your domain host, you can’t set up MX records to use Gmail with your domain.

Step 5. Set up Google Workspace email
  1. Follow the generic instructions for adding MX records to your ClouDNS account to enable Google Workspace mail with your domain.
  2. Create ​Google Workspace​ SPF records in your ClouDNS account to authorize email senders and help filter out spammers.
  3. Add ​Google Workspace​ DKIM records to your ClouDNS account to authenticate your email and help prevent spoofing.

Note: You must keep your NS records at your new domain host while you use Google Workspace. If you switch your NS records back to your domain host, your domain’s email stops working with Google Workspace.

Need help?

For help with your DNS records, contact ​Google Workspace​ support.

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