The World’s #1 Whois service just got better

| June 12, 2014

whois-fullIf you’ve spent any time on our site, you already know that “Whois” with DomainTools is much more than just a static Whois entry for a domain. Our Whois results page provides a detailed profile of the domain, including summary information on related IP addresses, name servers, IP geolocation, and web server stats and historical stats on domain ownership, NS, IP and Screenshot changes.

For most of our users, this is the jumping-off point for all kinds of investigations into cybercrime, security threats, online fraud, domains purchase, domain value, marketing opportunities, competition or any number of other activities.

We’ve just made access to this information easier to use, cleaner and faster. We’ve done a major overhaul of the Whois results page—a page that hasn’t had a design/UI update in many years. Not only was our goal to make it cleaner, better, faster, but to make it easier for users to start their investigations and leverage our Reverse, History, Monitors and other premium products. Like with a beautiful old building, at some point you need to renovate the lobby to make it look clean and function better.

Here’s an overview of the changes:

  • Major profile information has been cleaned up and organized so that the most valued and used information is on top.
  • Rows that contain historical or reverse lookup information such as registrant email, Whois History, and IP address, have action buttons that let you instantly “pivot” on that data point.
  • We flattened the tab structure so that key information is visible at a glance. We’ve included expand/collapse controls for the major sections of the table, as well.
  • A new “Tools” section is available in the upper right enabling you to jump straight to specific tools, view the domain’s screenshot, buy/backorder the domain, etc.
  • We’ve decreased load time.

For details on the changes and how to get the most out of the new features, read the User Guide.

What hasn’t changed:

  • We still provide the best coverage of Whois reporting across ccTLDs, new TLDs and gTLDs.
  • We still provide Whois history back 12 years.
  • We still provide the industry’s best Reverse Whois, Reverse IP, Reverse Name Server and Reverse Mail Server products.
  • We still provide the #1 Domain Search, domain name typo and name spinning products.
  • We still provide 100% real-time lookups, every time, for paying members. For non-paying members, most lookups are real-time and never older than that day. (The first lookup of every domain per day are real-time and subsequent lookups are never older than that day.)
  • The raw Whois record is always provided.

The new Whois results page is a big change from the previous. For long-time users, there might be a bit of a learning curve. So, please, jump in, explore, experiment and get to know it. We believe you will find it much more efficient. If, after you’ve tried it for a few days, you still have suggestions on how to make it better, please send us your feedback at product@domaintools.com.

For casual visitors, many of our more powerful tools, like Reverse Whois, Whois History and Domain Search, are available only to subscribing members. If you’re not already a DomainTools Professional member, sign up for a membership or a Free Trial  to find out for yourself how much you can learn with the research products we’ve assembled on top of the world’s largest database of domain and IP information.

Thanks for using DomainTools and happy exploring!

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Category: Domain Tools Updates, Whois

About the Author ()

Tim Helming, Director of Product Management at DomainTools, has over a decade of technology product management experience. Areas of particular focus and interest are cybersecurity software and hardware, distributed storage and computing, and DNS/Whois. He has spoken at cybersecurity, technology channel, and media events worldwide.

Comments (14)

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  1. Francois says:

    Do something. Really. Don’t know if it’s he text color, font name or size, but it’s simply unreadable!

    I cannot belive nobody noticed in your company.

  2. IMHO the previous version was better, more intuitive, and it was possible to see all main extensions together using the tab structure.
    I think it’s a big mistake eliminating the tab structure.
    Now you have to type every time each extension, while before you were able to skip through, to navigate all of them instantly, just typing one extension you were able to see the others.
    And the new terms “Taken domain, Available domain, Deleted previously owned domain” are a bit laughable and surely not so immediate and direct as the previous ones, together with a kinda confusing display.
    Furthermore, new colors are too light, there is little contrast sometimes, data can be harder to read, also for people with a perfect sight.
    Sorry guys, but don’t like it so much, looks like a step back, not ahead …

  3. Tim Helming says:

    Hi, Andrea

    Thanks for the offline discussion. Per that thread:

    You still are able to see the Whois status for the other TLD extensions by clicking the “View Whois” link next to each domain/extension. The function is the same as before, just with a different layout. We had received feedback previously that the circles were too confusing, but we appreciate your point of view as well!

    Concerning the font, we are looking at some options to make it stand out a little more strongly. Again, we appreciate the feedback.

    –Tim Helming

  4. Tim Helming says:

    Hi, Francois

    Thanks for commenting, and we are looking into some options to make the text stand out a bit more strongly.

    Keep the feedback coming!

    Best regards,

    Tim Helming

  5. Steve says:

    There seems to be a truncating issue with the new Whois layout (at least in the Safari & Firefox browsers I used).

    First, here are some example categories that fit all information onto 1 line; or that use a 2nd line ONLY when they have used up ALL available characters on the 1st line:

    ~~ IP Location ~~
    {flag} – Germany – Thuringen – Langenbach – Csl Computer Service Langenbach Gmbh
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 74 characteers + {flag}

    ~~ ASN ~~
    {flag} AS26496 AS-26496-GO-DADDY-COM-LLC – GoDaddy.com, LLC,US
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 56 characters + {flag}

    ~~ Registrar Status ~~
    clientDeleteProhibited, clientRenewProhibited, clientTransferProhibited,
    clientUpdateProhibited
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 72 characters
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 22 characters

    .
    .
    But, there are many more example categories that seem to truncate the text well before max # of characters on the 1st line is reached; then continue onto the 2nd line:
    [**Note – the ‘character count’ is only done for the 1st example in each category below]
    .
    ~~ Registrant Org ~~
    Axxxxxxxx LLP is associated with about 74 other
    domains
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 47 characters
    xxxxxxx = 7 characters

    B??????? is associated with about 31 other
    domains
    C????? is associated with about 421 other
    domains
    S????? C???? is associated with about 17 other
    domains
    A???????? LLP is associated with about 74 other
    domains

    .
    ~~ IP Address~~
    159.25.16.217 – 61 other sites hosted on this
    server
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 45 characters
    xxxxxx = 6 characters

    176.74.176.178 – 1,908,863 other sites hosted
    on this server
    50.22.24.130 – 80 other sites hosted on this
    server
    87.117.232.10 – 1,296 other sites hosted on this
    server

    .
    ~~ Whois History ~~
    14 records have been archived since
    2012-06-01
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 35 characters
    xxxxxxxxxx = 10 characters

    31 records have been archived since
    2007-09-10
    12 records have been archived since
    2007-10-18
    40 records have been archived since 2007-10-15 [**all in 1-line? Why different?]
    43 records have been archived since 2006-01-12 [**all in 1-line? Why different?]
    87 records have been archived since 2005-01-08 [**all in 1-line? Why different?]
    45 records have been archived since 2008-01-02 [**all in 1-line? Why different?]
    2 records have been archived since 2014-04-06 [**all on 1-line.]

    .
    ~~ IP History ~~
    55 changes on 48 unique IP addresses over 9
    years
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 43 characters
    xxxxx = 5 characters

    33 changes on 16 unique IP addresses over 10
    years
    30 changes on 13 unique IP addresses over 10
    years
    1 change on 2 unique IP addresses over 0 years [**all on 1-line.]
    6 changes on 4 unique IP addresses over 8 years [**all on 1-line.]
    27 changes on 3 unique IP addresses over 9 years [**all on 1-line.]

    .
    ~~ Hosting History ~~
    12 changes on 9 unique name servers over 6
    years
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx = 43 characters
    xxxxx = 5 characters

    4 changes on 4 unique name servers over 10
    years
    1 change on 2 unique name servers over 0 year [**all on 1-line.]
    4 changes on 4 unique name servers over 8 years [**all on 1-line.]

    .
    _________________________________________

    Also, a suggestion for how the ‘Dates’ information has been laid out:

    [NEW layout]:

    ~~ Dates ~~
    Created on 2001-09-15 – Expires on 2015-09-15 – Updated on
    2011-09-08

    .
    [OLD/Suggested Layout – much quicker to pick out the specific date you want]:

    ~~ Dates (yyyy-mm-dd) ~~
    Created on: 2001-09-09
    Expires on: 2015-09-12
    Updated on: 2011-09-08

  6. Dan Prather says:

    1. Appears that small things like Quantcast, DMOZ, Meta Description and SEO Analyzer have been removed. Were these items deemed insignificant? Would have thought that more would be added to a profile to include: Trademarked?, in UDRP and Parked Only Site indicators.

    2. The font is EXTREMELY light and hard to read.

    Thanks

  7. Ismail Fazal says:

    Well Francois you are right, its like i have come closer to my monitor to read what’s written, fonts are too narrow to read, previous font were better, for layout point of view it may take time for us to adjust to it. There should be an option to go to old view for some period of time.
    Tim Helming love the service but font should be considered to be changed.

  8. Dave says:

    The font size and color are terrible, almost impossible to see. How did you miss this most central useability issue?

    I have used your paid service for years and wish the old version was still available.

  9. Tim Helming says:

    Hi, Steve

    Can you ping me at product@domaintools.com? I want to get a little more info on the truncations. By the way, the design is responsive, so changing your window size will move the text wrap in real time.

    Thanks,

    Tim Helming

  10. Tim Helming says:

    Hi, Dan

    Thanks for the feedback. First, on the font, we’re looking into some alternatives that would make it stand out more starkly.

    On the Quantcast, DMOZ, etc., we did some user studies where the feedback was that folks weren’t using this info much. However, we’re interested in any feedback that our users have about these things, and we’ll keep an eye on the sentiment of the user base on this and other issues.

    Thanks again,

    Tim Helming

  11. Tim Helming says:

    All,

    Rest assured that your feedback didn’t fall on deaf ears! We have updated the font for the Whois results with a heavier, darker font. We also made a rendering change which should improve the appearance especially on Windows machines.

    Best regards,

    Tim Helming

  12. Sorry, one more thing.

    What’s up with your reCAPTCHA install? It only displays one alphanumeric sequence now. The reCAPTCHA challenge is supposed to be two words (or alphanum sequences)? I don’t like all these surprise changes!!!

    Seriously, I do realize that Google is responsible for reCAPTCHA, not DomainTools, but was curious ;o)

    P.S. I love using DomainTools. You are (were?) the very BEST. I tell them that on StackExchange and WOT.

  13. Tim Helming says:

    Hi, Ellie

    Got to say we love to see the passion here, even if the changes didn’t all hit the mark from your standpoint!

    Couple of notes:

    -Screenshot History is on a blue button right below the screenshot itself (assuming you are logged in). We consolidated the various screenshot tools (view screenshot, access screenshot history, queue domain for screenshot update) in one area of the screen for easy access.
    -Not sure where the red rectangles are–that may have been an ad you were seeing? If you’re not logged in, there are some ads on the page.
    -reCaptcha: you’re right, it comes direct from Google. We’re somewhat at their mercy on that one.

    An invitation: check back in with us either here, or directly to product@domaintools.com, after you’ve had a little “stick time” on the revised layout. We are interested in whether your perspective changes–up, down, or indifferent–after a few days working with it.

    Best regards,

    Tim

  14. Now it’s way better, layout is OK and all is readable, thank you Tim :)