When OpenDNS invited the public in on July 10, 2006, there was not yet a mechanism for controlling your DNS preferences. It only took one week for us to get started, with the introduction of account-less preferences (for single, static IP addresses only) with a quiet link at the end of a post. That feature did the job, but it wasn’t a platform for advancement.

So, on November 7, 2006, we introduced OpenDNS Accounts, which took the preference management capabilities and added:

  • more fine-grained control for larger networks
  • clearer verification mechanisms, including self-service for single IP addresses
  • secure (SSL) registration
  • support for dynamic IP addresses
  • network statistics
  • control over branding for larger networks
  • and cranberries (my almost-funny joke for American Thanksgiving)

Accounts are the real foundation for the control we give our users.

For the past few months, we’ve supported both Accounts and account-less preferences, as long as there was no conflict. Given our growth, supporting both systems has become more challenging. Since preferences are feature-frozen, and Accounts are offering more and more features (hint: more coming soon!), the choice is clear: it’s time to retire account-less preferences.

This change affects very few users…but we’d like to make sure they know about this coming change.

The irony? If we had a way of reaching the affected users, we would have emailed them privately. But note the account-less part of account-less preferences. 😉

Therefore, we are giving six weeks’ notice, and we will post at least two more reminders along the way.

To sum up:

  1. No account required to use OpenDNS with default preferences, including phishing protection and typo correction. No change.
  2. With a free, secure OpenDNS account, you may manage your preferences, get statistics about your network, post in the Forums, and more. No change.
  3. On Monday, April 9, 2007, all account-less preferences will be erased. This is important for a few thousand OpenDNS customers.

If you are using account-less preferences, please get a free account now and add your network(s), whether single IP address or much, much larger.

Update: February 27, 2007 For those coming from account-less preferences, there are some differences in the Accounts system. Once you create an account, there are three more steps.

  1. Add a network. You can enter a single IP, or a range of IP addresses as a CIDR block.
  2. Verify your network. For a single IP network (a /32), you will be sent an email with a special link. To verify your management of that IP, click the link while visible to the webserver as coming from that IP address. For individual computers, this is probably not a problem. For a server, it may require an additional step or two. If you have problems, please tell us via the contact form within the My Account section.
    For a larger network (two IP addresses on up), OpenDNS staff will review the network. You will be notified via email when the network is verified, or if there are additional questions.
  3. Manage your network preferences. Once the network is verified, you will see a wrench icon (Wrench icon, for managing network preferences) next to your network address. Click the wrench icon, and you’ll be taken to a screen where you can manage your preferences for that network. This will be mostly familiar, though with some additional preferences.

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