When you are ready to share your site with the public you can add your own custom domain. Please make sure you have completed all of the requirements in before you launch before continuing.
If you are migrating an existing site to Federalist and wish to minimize downtime, see minimizing downtime
It is possible to add up to 2 custom domains for your site, each one requires the completion of the following 3 steps:
- Configure your DNS
- Notify Federalist
- Update your Site Settings
Configure your DNS
For each domain you add to Federalist, there are 2 DNS records that you (or your DNS administrators) must create before Federalist can serve your site at the chosen domain.
The details differ depending on the type of domain you would like to add.
Determine your domain type
An “apex” or “2nd level” domain is the “root” of your domain and will contain only one “
.”. A subdomain is any other domain and will contain more than one “
Adding an apex domain
Because Federalist does not currently provide static IP addresses, in order for Federalist to serve a site at an apex domain your DNS provider must support
ALIAS records. If they do not, you may require additional help for Federalist to be able to serve your site at that domain.
Your DNS provider supports
Then you only need to configure the following DNS records, replacing
example.gov with your actual domain:
Your DNS provider does not support
Federalist does not currently provide static IP addresses for which an
A record can be used to direct traffic to your site. In this case you will have to utilize an external server that:
- is available at a static IP
- can redirect traffic from your apex domain to a subdomain (Ex.
- includes an SSL certificate for the apex domain that you or your service provider acquires
If your agency or DNS provider has an available service, you (or they) can follow the following steps:
- Obtain and install an SSL certificate for your apex domain on the “redirect” server
- Configure the “redirect” server to redirect traffic from your apex domain to a subdomain (
Configure the following DNS record, replacing
example.govwith your actual domain and
126.96.36.199with the actual IP address of your “redirect” server:
type name value
- Follow the instructions in adding a subdomain for the subdomain to which you are redirecting.
Adding a subdomain
Configure the following DNS records, replacing
sub.example.gov with your actual domain:
It may take 5-10 minutes to provision an SSL certificate, so there will be a non-trivial amount of time between when the DNS records are created and when your site is live. To reduce the downtime, you can create the DNS records in two separate steps:
- Create the
CNAMErecord for the
_acme-challengesubdomain as described above and notify Federalist support
- Federalist support will notify you once SSL certificate has been issued
- Create the
CNAMErecord for your subdomain as described above
Once your DNS changes are complete, notify Federalist support via:
Someone from the Federalist support team will assist you and make the updates to the Federalist platform.
Update your site settings
Once the Federalist team has notified you that the platform changes are complete, update your Site Settings to reflect the new custom domain.
In the Federalist web application, navigate to the Site Settings page for your site by clicking on the
Site Settingslink on the lefthand navigation:
Under “Live Site” enter the branch name you want to associate to the custom domain and full url of the domain you just configured. When you are done, (scroll down if necessary and) click “save basic settings”
Federalist will rebuild your site and then it will be available at the custom domain. If you notice that your site does not look correct and/or any site assets (css, js, images) appear to be missing, make sure that the urls to those assets are correct, we provide the environment variable
BASEURLfor this purpose. If using Jekyll, please make sure you use
site.baseurlwhen constructing asset urls manually or use the
assethelper tag if using the