In the past, I have covered domain registration on Solana and Ethereum. Both posts continue to garner a lot of interest, so I'll cover a few more options that might be of interest to Web3 aficionados. You can find the complete series here.
Web3 is a fairly contemporary catch-all term used to cover blockchains, cryptocurrencies, DeFi (decentralized finance), NFTs (non-fungible tokens), DAOs (decentralized autonomous organizations) and more. So what better way to dive in than to own a .nft, .dao or .crypto domain, eh? In this post, I'll walk through the steps required to do exactly this using Unstoppable Domains (if you use my referral link, we both get a $10 credit when you make a $40+ purchase).
What is Unstoppable Domains?
Much like ENS or Namebase, Unstoppable Domains is a domain registrar looking to offer users a decentralized web identity. A way to convert the long string of letters and numbers to a human-readable name, consolidate multiple cryptocurrency addresses, and even login to decentralized websites. Similar to ENS, Unstoppable domains are ERC-721-compliant NFTs which allow them to be tradeable on marketplaces like OpenSea! Unlike DNS or ENS though, Unstoppable lets you buy once and own the domain forever, with no renewal fees. Clearly, there are tradeoffs, with Unstoppable choosing to focus on a good user experience first.
Unstoppable Domains uses Polygon as the Layer 2 (L2) scaling solution, and currently offers free mints on Polygon i.e. zero fees to claim and manage the domain. Once the domain is minted, you have full custody over it, and is a pre-requisite if you are looking to sell, transfer or gift the domains. Domain transfers between Layer 1 (L1) and L2 is on the roadmap (you won't be able to escape the gas fees here though).
Currently, Unstoppable Domains resolves .crypto domain names on both Opera and Brave browsers. For other TLDs (top-level domains), you'll need to download the Chrome or Firefox browser extensions. Several crypto wallets also support Unstoppable Domains, making crypto transfers pretty easy.
One thing to call out though is that ICANN, the DNS management authority, has not released these TLDs in the public domain yet. Unstoppable plans to purchase the TLD rights when they are available but, in the event they don't and the TLDs get issued to someone else, there could be domain resolution conflicts. In such a scenario, users would be reliant on the applications (browsers, dapps etc) to resolve the domains correctly.
Buy a Domain From Unstoppable Domains
Now that we've covered the basics, let's get started. Head over to Unstoppable Domains, create an account and search for your desired domain name. Currently, there are 10 TLDs available, though depending on the uniqueness of your desired domain, it may already be taken or reserved, or available at a premium.
Select an available domain and add to cart. Click
Checkout to continue.
Unstoppable offers multiple payment options - credit card, PayPal, cryptocurrency and Crypto.com app. Choose your preferred option and click
Once your purchase completes, the domain will be available under
My Domains. For eligible domains (not minted), a
Free Mint on Polygon option is available.
Mint Your Domain for Free on Polygon Network
Click on the
Free Mint button and click
Continue to start the process of minting (aka claiming) your newly registered domain on Polygon. Choose and approve the wallet (sign the transaction) that you'd like your domain minted to.
Review the details and click
Confirm to continue.
You may be asked to verify your email with a two-factor authentication code. Provide the code and voila, the minting process will begin.
Polygon network is pretty quick, and the domain should be minted shortly.
Configure Crypto Addresses and Other Metadata (Optional)
Once minted, click on
My Domains to update crypto addresses and other metadata for your domain.
Redirect to a Traditional Domain (Optional)
Redirection to a traditional domain isn't seamless just yet - you need to first create an
index.html file with the following content. Make sure to include the https:// in the website URL below, and to save the file as
Plain Text instead of
<!DOCTYPE html> <html> <head> <title>HTML Meta Tag</title> <meta http-equiv = "refresh" content = "1; url = WEBSITE URL HERE" /> </head> <body> <p>WEBSITE DESCRIPTION HERE </p> </body> </html>
Next, upload the
index.html file to IPFS by selecting the
Upload Website Files option in the
Website tab under
My Domains for your domain.
Once uploaded, scroll down and click
Login with Unstoppable Authentication Protocol (Optional)
Login with Unstoppable is a feature that allows domain owners to login and share information with applications, allowing developers to maintain information about their users without building a full-blown CRM tracking system. This feature is built using the Unstoppable Authentication protocol (UAuth), which is an extension of the popular OpenID Connect (OIDC) protocol used for authorizing access to resources. Frankly, I have not tested this feature yet, but it looks interesting enough to warrant a deeper dive in a future post. Until then, have fun setting up your NFT domain!