Being a happy client with GratisDNS, I was sad to hear Peter Larsen sold the company to One.com. We used GratisDNS as registrar for many client domains for years. The template based administrative user interface was in one word – fantastic! Everything worked perfectly the DNS services was free to use and domain renewal was very reasonable priced. Peter Larsen and his team were highly skilled. Their support was known to be both rude and expensive. To me it was a part of the charm.
During the summer 2022 all domains were transferred from GratisDNS’ to one.com’s infrastructure.
A previous encounter with one.com
A Friday afternoon in 2017 it knocked on the door at the office. Outside a team from “Svindeljegerne” (fraud hunters) by Norwegian TV3 was waiting. They wanted to ask me about my role in a scam recruiting sex chat operators under illegal working conditions including tax and duty evasion – using our business address. The TV-team had found links to Denmark in the setup. As I was the only Dane working on the address, I was the obvious suspect. With no part in the scam I willingly answered all question. Afterwards, research from our side revealed worrying and undoubtedly criminal activities using our address on multiple websites. Our findings were forwarded to the tax authorities and the police. The domains used were registered by a danish company. Further investigations revealed the company was controlled by one.com, who was using it to hide the identity of their clients. With an appearance on national TV coming up we put a statement on our company website including the details of our findings. In response an e-mail from the one.com’s CFO confirming our findings was received. He had no moral issues providing services to scammers and required the statement removed and made legal threats in addition. “Fun fact” : Five years later some of the scam websites are still online and still using our business address. Can you guess on who’s infrastructure they are hosted? – You have one guess. Since those events one.com has not been my first choice of service provider. We do however have clients who have chosen to go for them.
Click, click, click… until you go click
Unintentionally being transferred to one.com we ended up with hundreds of domains on several accounts. At first we gave one.com a chance in the hope of saving time. But very soon we realized that their user interface is a nightmare administrating many domains. Simple tasks requires a lot of clicking around and there is no good overview as you see only one domain at the time. Worst of all, no API for domain administration is available. To many that is a deal breaker.
A client of us reported one of their websites down shortly after their domains were transferred to one.com. We checked everything. All records were transferred – no problem there. However, DNSSEC did not validate.
DNSSEC disaster and slow responding support
We contacted one.com support and described the problem and even added a link to an online validation tool. The guy in the other end did not know of DNSSEC(!) – seriously? After several attempts explaining the situation and the solution – and waiting for support response, we gave up. In the meantime, we tested other providers’ services. Our client went for simply.com. They do provide an excellent template based DNS admin, prices are reasonable, admin interface are fast and responsive – all good. Now we just had to move the domains to the new registrar.
Product cancellation deliberately made uneasy
Once again the user interface at one.com showed to be… a bitch. For each domain we had to go thru the following steps to receive auth-ID for the domain transfer:
- Log in
- Go to product list
- Find domain
- Open sub menu
- Click cancel
- Confirm cancellation
- Receive mail with a confirmation link
- Open link
- Provide password
- Answer user survey (you can choose not to provide information, but it will require several clicks)
- Confirm cancellation again
- Receive mail with auth-ID
During the process the response is often very slow. The final confirmation sometimes take several minutes and may end with an “Oops, something went wrong!”. You then have to start over. We also got a “The page isn’t redirecting properly”-error trying to cancel a subscription (deleting all domain cookies solved this).
If you think you can proceed with the next domain after confirming cancellation, you are wrong. In the process you are logged out of the admin area. Go back to start and provide you credentials again. We have literally spent hours going thru the procedure. According to support there are no other way to do this. Why does one.com not provide you with the option to cancel multiple products at the time? – your guess is as good as mine. Mine is; they want to make your exit as difficult as possible. In this regard they did very well.