The long job of bringing the New Zealand DNS up to date will be all but over this morning, with cancellation of the last hundred or so unregistered domain names, from around 8000 when ISOCNZ took over management of the New Zealand DNS nearly a year ago. The ISOCNZ Registry will signal its next move in time for its first birthday.
Spokesman Patrick O'Brien says that the Registry began cancelling old domain names on July 1, in consultation with the ISPs who were listed as hosting the names.
"We've been dribbling the changes through on a day by day basis, and what that means to us operationally, is that if we had caught anyone who was using the DNS but was unknown to us and their ISP and thus lost service, we could easily bring them back up. We've taken a pragmatic approach."
O'Brien says the Registry will now focus on chasing bad debtors, a process which began about a month ago, and "once I catch my breath, I'll be putting a few words out on our Web pages as to where we go to from here.
"It's our first birthday on the 22nd of July- the first anniversary of charging - and for that I'll lay out what I think the next things are in the coming six months."
The main Registry Website will also absorb the better features of the "full registration" pages which accompanied the campaign to update the old "pre-July" domain names. O'Brien says the notably friendly site is rare in world terms.
"I've looked around the world at registry companies like ourselves and there are very few that talk to you in plain English, and there are very few places around the world where you do get full Web access like we have here."
The Registry itself appears to have continued to improve it performance. Figures for the last six months show 75% of new names have been listed in one working day, and 98% in two days.
"You won't get better than that, apart perhaps from the States," says O'Brien. "We would be the best little service provider in the Registry business around the world - guaranteed. Then there's the ease of use, especially for the non-technical person, and the low price - we're the second cheapest in the world among registries that charge."
O'Brien says registering or cancelling all the existing names in the DNS "has been a lengthy and challenging process - and the idea in all of it has been not to cut people off. It's been to say if you want the name, get the name listed."
It appears that very few name holders have received the unpleasant shock of logging on to find their Internet services have disappeared.
"I'd always estimated there'd be around 50 people we'd cancel and have to put back on. But we've really got nowhere near that. We've reinstated about 20 people whose names appeared on the cancellation lists, but nothing dramatic, they've just taken a long time to go about doing it."
"There was one last week, and the reason they had an issue was they were a fourth-level name parented off a third-level name that was cancelled. The company had gone out of business, but it was just one of those quirks that someone out there was still parented off their name."
No .govt names have been cancelled, all of them having been fully registered by early last week.
Meanwhile, cancelled names are now listed in the Registry database alongside the date when their 60-day holding period expires and they become available to all comers.
Among potentially useful generic names already cancelled are cdrom.co.nz, newsmedia.co.nz, cgi.co.nz (available Sept 1); music.co.nz (Sept 5); natural.co.nz and power.co.nz (Sept 6). The names forex.co.nz and land.co.nz were among those to be cancelled today.
Among company domains, continuum.co.nz and live-strauss.co.nz have been cancelled, and among those to be cancelled today were stlukesgroup.co.nz, letraset.co.nz and kmart.co.nz - all of them apparently originally registered by the relevant companies.
Late registrations were made for a number of names, including software.co.nz (reclaimed by Wellington's Software Shop on June 30) and sanitarium.co.nz (registered on July 1).