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Posted 30 Jan 2015

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Using a Custom Domain with an Azure WebSite

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30 Jan 2015CPOL4 min read
How to use a custom domain with an Azure website

As a follow up to the previous post on migrating your existing site to Azure Websites, this post will cover how to apply a custom domain for your Azure Website so that you don’t have to deal with that pesky trailing “” in your URL.

What Do You Need?

You’ll need the following things to start this process:

  • An Azure Website that is up and running
  • A Domain that you want to target for your site
  • A few dollars to spend as you’ll be migrating from the Free section of Azure

If you have those things (or are prepared to have those things), then you should be able to get your custom domain working in no time.

Rockin’ in the Non-Free World

One of the restrictions of Azure Websites in the Free Web Hosting Plan (default) is that it lacks the ability for you to use your own domain. So the first thing that you are going to need to do is establish a new hosting plan within Azure.

Log into your Azure Web Portal and select the site that you want to apply this domain to. Shortly after logging in, click the Scale tab that appears along the top menu. Clicking Scale will present you with various settings regarding how to scale-out your application or site as seen below:

In order to use a custom domain, you'll need to choose one of the three non-free hosting plans: Shared, Basic or Standard.

In order to use a custom domain, you’ll need to choose one of the three non-free hosting plans: Shared, Basic or Standard.

You can choose any of the available options (Shared, Basic and Standard) as all of these support custom domains. Your preference will really just depend on the level of traffic that you are expecting and how much you want to pay. For the purposes of this example, we will use Standard, but the steps should still apply for both Shared and Basic.

Get Your Domain Talking to Azure

Generally, I have used in the past for my domain and the name of their site alone can let you know why. Their service and support has always been extremely helpful and the entire process of purchasing a domain from them was quick, painless and (again) cheap. This section of the tutorial will use’s interface, which leaves a bit to be desired, but the general concepts should apply to any domain provider that you would be using.

After updating your hosting plan, you will want to visit the Configure tab within the Azure portal for your site. You’ll see quite a few settings and configurations related to your site, but continue going until you see Domain Names:


Clicking the Manage Domains button will present you with the following dialog that will mark the beginning of a few steps of bouncing between your Azure site and the DNS settings of your domain provider (e.g.

Manage a Custom Domain in Azure Websites

Keep this dialog open and open a new tab within your browser. In this new tab, log into the site that manages the custom domain that you are going to be using for this Azure Website. Once you have logged in, you’ll want to go into the Manage Domains area (if applicable) and look for an area that allows you to define your DNS settings for the site (it’s called “All Host Records” on :


Clicking on this area (or its equivalent within your domain provider) should present you with an area that looks like the following:

The DNS Records area within your Domain Provider is where all the magic will happen.

The DNS Records area within your Domain Provider is where all the magic will happen.

Within here, you are going to need to add the following entries:

  1. Add an A (Address) Entry for ‘@’

    You’ll point the IP Address that is found within the Manage Domains dialog in Azure to the ‘@’ entry within the DNS records:

    Point the '@' Record to the IP Address from Azure
  2. Add a CNAME (Alias) Entry for ‘www’

    You’ll point the address for your existing Azure Website (e.g. to the ‘www’ entry within the DNS records.

  3. Add a CNAME (Alias) Sub-domain Entry for ‘awverify’

    You’ll need to create an alias under the sub-domain section called ‘awverify’ that points to the ‘awverify’ sub-domain for your site (e.g.

After adding all of these, your DNS records should look something like this:


It should take a few minutes for these changes to take effect. However after making them, you’ll now need to let Azure know that you will be pointing to this new domain as well. So return to the Manage Domains dialog within Azure and enter in your custom domain:

Enter in your updated domain name within the Manage Domains dialog in the Azure Portal

Enter in your updated domain name within the Manage Domains dialog in the Azure Portal

As mentioned, it can take a few minutes for Azure to recognize that the earlier DNS entries that were changed so be patient. After verifying your domain via a small green checkmark, you should be good to go!

You can try navigating directly to your site and you should be able to access it at your new domain as expected. If it doesn’t pop up right away, you can try explicitly refreshing your Azure Website or just waiting things out a bit until the DNS changes take effect.

The post Using a Custom Domain with an Azure WebSite appeared first on Rion.IO.


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

Written By
Software Developer (Senior)
United States United States
An experienced Software Developer and Graphic Designer with an extensive knowledge of object-oriented programming, software architecture, design methodologies and database design principles. Specializing in Microsoft Technologies and focused on leveraging a strong technical background and a creative skill-set to create meaningful and successful applications.

Well versed in all aspects of the software development life-cycle and passionate about embracing emerging development technologies and standards, building intuitive interfaces and providing clean, maintainable solutions for even the most complex of problems.

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