It’s been a while since I’ve posted a blog post, two and a half years it appears (or 938 days if we’re been exact!)
My last blog post was back in 2018 on EU Domains To Be Revoked From UK Citizens, Faith In .EU Domains Lost, this was rather concerning as I had no real desire to move away from my .eu domain name, it was short and summed up where in the world I was blogging from.
Needless to say this is one of the reasons that put me off blogging, what was the point if one day I’d loose that domain and not even be able to redirect any traffic to a newer domain? In addition I had various online accounts associated with this domain, so knowing I could loose the rights to it due to a political event, such as the UK leaving the EU was very concerning.
This made me put a lot of thought in to choosing a new domain name. I concluded if I was to go though the trouble of both moving my personal email, blog and online accounts to a new domain, this new domain would have to be a .com, .net or a TLD from the country I reside in. Ideally a .uk or .me.uk domain failing that. Based on my experience with my .EU domain I didn’t want to purchase any other vanity domain TLD’s that we’re controlled by companies, such as .blog. I concluded .com, .net .org we’re pretty much universal and unlikely to be affected by any political event or otherwise in the future. Likewise any TLD from the country I reside in (the UK) would be equally safe, if anything every happened to the UK, they would probably be bigger things to worry about than my UK domain.
The trouble was at the time .uk was a fairly new TLD that had a 5 year reservation period giving owners of the .co.uk time to resister the .uk equivalent, as annoying as that was it seemed fair.
The .uk domain I wanted hadn’t been registered by the owner of the .co.uk, so all I could really do is wait to see if they also registered the .uk domain. I had a feeling they wouldn’t register the domain as the .co.uk just looked to be parked and not actively used for anything. However it didn’t mean someone else wouldn’t have the same idea as me and try register the domain when the first opportunity came.
However until that time came I needed another domain to transfer my personal email and blog over to. I actually owned a .me.uk domain already, back when I couldn’t decide between .eu and me.uk. I ended up choosing .eu as it was shorter to type, this obviously turned out to be a mistake, however I guess we live and learn. As far as I’m aware domains been revoked due to a political event is a new precedent. Even .su domains are still active today from the days of the Soviet Union.
I transferred my blog over to my .me.uk. domain on January 24th 2019, along with my personal email, gradually moving any services i’d associated with the .eu away over the next few months.
Moving my personal email was a bit annoying as i’d historically used Windows Live Domains, which was a service where you’d essentially have a Hotmail / Windows Live / Outlook inbox with a custom domain, hosted by Microsoft at no cost. This offering had long since been discontinued, however any email addresses setup and using this service can still do so, even today. However as I was moving domain i’d now have to pay for email hosting, as this is really one thing you probably don’t want to do yourself for a personal email address. To me anyway it was more trouble than it was worth. Plus I rather like Microsoft Exchange, so the Exchange Online Plan 1 offering at £3 a month was perfect for me, even more so that I could add multiple domains to my account and create various email aliases, all going to the same inbox. If I was ever to move domains again, at least email would be the easy part this time.
Fast forward to July 1st 2019 any previously reserved .uk domains that had not been registered were made available on a first-come, first served basis:
1st July – Domains beginning 0-9, a-b
2nd July – Domains beginning c-f
3rd July – Domains beginning g-m
4th July – Domains beginning n-s
5th July – Domains beginning t-z
So with that in mind July 3rd 2019 was the day I could possibly register the .uk domain I had my eye on. The day came and I submitted my registration request for the domain name, from what I remember I had to wait well over a week before finding out if i’d secured the domain. Although from doing a WHOIS on the domain I could see it was actually secured and registered on July 4th 2019 by the registrar i’d attempted to register with, so I was hopefully it was myself who had obtained the domain. Eventually I found out I did indeed own a .uk domain, result!
At the time I didn’t want to go though the process of moving my blog once again, or changing my personal email address yet again and informing people, which in turn means I pretty much ignored blogging and just concentrated on other interests.
In early 2020 I did start giving the blog a fresh new look with a theme i’d purchased and applied quite a few of my own CSS tweaks to, so everything was just how I wanted it. I never actually went live with switching things over after that. 2020 was a surreal year to say the least.
However its now March 20th 2021 and I’ve redirected my .me.uk domain to my .uk domain, told Google in their search console about moving domains and here we are. matthewhill.uk is now officially live.
I still need to switch matthewhill.uk to my primary email domain, however that will be easy to do this time as all my email’s are handled by Exchange Online. I have multiple domains & aliases setup in Exchange Online which, all come though to one Inbox. So nothing really changes in this regard, if either the .me.uk or .uk domain is emailed, the email will end up in the same inbox regardless. I’d still like to associate my accounts with the .UK domain over time and of course let family & friends know of my new email address.
I think that’s enough for this blog, I do plan to get back in to blogging again this year, so hopefully I will have some more content to post up soon.