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      Interview: Mark Jeftovic, Co-founder - easyDNS Technologies, Inc.  

    easyDNS has won the confidence of the majority of the web hosting industry. Rather than seeing the Toronto, Canada based company as competition, web hosts are now referring their customers to easyDNS.

    HostIndex.com spoke with co-founder Mark Jeftovic to find out why.   

    HostIndex.com: Why did you start easyDNS back in 1998?

    Mark Jeftovic: We were running another company back then that specialized in custom development and applications - primarily dynamically generated websites with SQL back-ends. In the late 90's, this was still pretty novel and as such, whenever a new client signed with us, it usually meant bringing over their domain name in order to host the project.

    The same problems were encountered over and over again. Often the domain had been registered by some third party and for any number of reasons. We couldn't get a simple hostname pointed at our webservers, or we couldn't get the domain itself delegated to our nameservers.

    So we thought to ourselves, "somebody needs to build a system where you can completely manage your domain name and your DNS from a web browser, without going through anyone else", and that was how we first got the idea. This was in 1996; it took us a couple years of developing this thing in our spare time before we got it to the point of launching easyDNS in '98.  


    HostIndex.com: What service does easyDNS provide to the web hosting industry?

    Mark Jeftovic: We provide the same service to web hosting providers as we do to anybody else - DNS and domain name management. In the early days, we were concerned the web hosting industry in general wouldn't like us. Web hosts often bundle DNS with their packages and by taking it out, we were preventing some types of "lock-in", making it easier for people to switch hosting providers. There have been a few hosts over the years who refuse to delegate to us and won't let their users have their DNS here, but they are by far the minority.

    Over the years, more hosts started referring their users to us to offload the maintenance of the domains, and more than a few started actually using us, for their own domains or for the offsite nameservers via secondary DNS.

    HostIndex.com: What segment of the market are you targeting?

    Mark Jeftovic: Until quite recently we've concentrated on the retail side of things through the easyDNS.com site. We just targeted "domain holders", and that could mean anyone from a mom-and-pop retail outfit, to SOHO, to consultants, small and medium sized businesses etc. My usual response to the "who uses easyDNS?" question is that is varies from United States senators to thrash-metal bands and everything in between.

    More recently, (read: right now) we are moving into the enterprise class market, including ISP's, ASP's and web hosts. We've shown proof-of-concept over the years that outsourced DNS works and there is a demand for it. Now we're finally ready to service the operations with large numbers of domain names. It's something we've said was coming "Real Soon Now" for over a year and it's finally here (so its rather serendipitous that you contacted us). We rewrote easyDNS from the ground up for this market and we've developed a completely separate platform for it.

    Basically, companies in this segment can have their own easyDNS site, fully functional and designed to handle large volumes, and private labeled to integrate into their existing operations. (interested parties should check out http://solutions.easydns.com )

    HostIndex.com: You signed with Q9 Networks in April to supply easyDNS domain management system at the enterprise level. How has that been received? Do you have other enterprise level customers lined up?

    Mark Jeftovic: Q9 is very happy with the DNS engine we supplied them. Their customers really like it and it is integrated right into their management console. We have since launched domains.dslreports.com and domains.canadacomputes.com who are using the new engine as marketing partners. Stay tuned to for a couple announcements regarding the newest additions in the ASP and telecom space.

    HostIndex.com: A quote from one of your testimonials says, "The bottom line is that you should have your website hosted by professionals who specialize in managing webservers, but your DNS should be hosted by professionals who specialize in managing DNS servers. The two are very different, and far too many admins take DNS management lightly."
    How do you convince admins to take DNS management more seriously?

    Mark Jeftovic: Another well-worn quip we have around here is, "DNS is something you don't notice until it stops working". Some of our customers are here because they've found that out the hard way.

    HostIndex.com: What makes easyDNS stand out from others from other providing a similar service?

    Mark Jeftovic: We've had 100% DNS uptime since we launched in July 1998. But what sets us apart even more than the technology are the people. We answer the phones, we reply to email, we aren't 24X7 phone support yet, but we still cover off-hours quite effectively. Problems do occur sometimes with individual zones and dare I say it, we've even made a few mistakes over the years, but we found them fast and fixed them faster. We supply a level of customer support that is extremely rare, and that's what separates you from the pack in any industry.

    HostIndex.com: Do you find advantages being a Canadian based company in a global market?

    Mark Jeftovic: We haven't noticed anything obvious. Canadians like us because we're Canadian; people outside of North America often think we're American. Americans often think we're American, until they hear us say the word 'about' on the phone.

    Whether it will have an effect on us going into the ISP/ASP market remains to be seen. One of the announcements we'll be making soon involves an American ASP provider.

    HostIndex.com:  Thanks for speaking with us today, Mark.  



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