You have your domain name registered and you bought your server space and you uploaded WordPress. Now you want to give your website a beautiful look and then start uploading content. That’s nice! BUT, why on earth are you getting ‘403 Forbidden’ error message? It is because of the fact that DNS propagation is not complete!
Nameservers and DNS Progagation
When you register a domain name with your hosting service provider, the host will point your domain to the nameservers. A nameserver is more like a phone book where your domain name will be printed or recorded. The funning thing is that if you have a domain registered as www.exampledomain.com, the nameservers will not record it the same way. The name will be assigned unique IP (Internet Protocol) address, something like 22.214.171.1248. This is the number that will be recorded with the nameservers. This is called DNS or Domain Name System.
The internet is vast and limitless. How do you think will someone who types www.exampledomain.com will get the content (data) related to the website? Where will internet bots look for the data? The data can be kept anywhere in the world in any datacenter. The internet’s network layer first uses one or perhaps more than one IP addresses to identify the datacenters to servers. After that, the internet will use the DNS or unique IP assigned to your domain name to find out your website content. Once found, the internet will then show the data on the browser of the user who queried your website using your domain name.
Now, when internet finds the datacenters using the network layer, the next thing it does is querying the datacenters or servers using the unique IP assigned to your domain name. So, where is the internet getting your DNS or unique IP? For your IP to be available all over the world across all networks, it has to spread throughout. For this, your domain is first registered with Root Nameservers. When someone queries your domain name, the local DNS of the ISP first queries the Root Nameservers and asks what IP or DNS is assigned to your domain name and who is the authoritative DNS server for your domain. Authoritative DNS server is nothing but the nameserver to which your domain is actually pointed by the hosting service provider.
The Root Nameserver gives the two information to your local DNS which then queries the authoritative DNS server to dig out the data related to your website and display it on a web browser. The Root Nameserver is the actual source from where the internet gets all the information. Registering with Root Nameserver takes time and it is called DNS propagation. For your domain information to be available with Root Nameserver, it must be pointed to two authoritative DNS servers or nameservers. One is called Primary or Master Nameserver and the other is called Secondary or Slave Nameserver and generally referred to as ns1 and ns2. This DNS propagation for new domain registration can take 24-48 hours to complete before your website can be pulled out. So, if you are getting ‘403 Forbidden’ error message, it is only because DNS propagation is not complete. So, cheer up! You just need to wait out the 24-48 hour time to get access to your website.