IP Address vs Domain Name

Hello. According to https://github.com/discourse/discourse/blob/master/docs/INSTALL-cloud.md#domain-name, Discourse requires a domain name, and won’t work from an IP address. Why is this?

We have a domain name, but we’ve been using the raw IP address for development, for privacy reasons until the project is ready to reveal. Is there a way to make Discourse work with an IP address until everything’s ready?

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No, a DNS entry is required.

You can set your site to Login Required and turn off registration to prevent users from seeing the site before launch.

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Thanks for the reply. Do you happen to know why it’s required? Seems like a rather arbitrary restriction, from the outside.

To be fair using an IP address to “hide” an online application isn’t exactly standard practice. I’ve been building medium to large multi-tenanted web services for a very long time now, nothing gets out of development on an IP.

It’s very common to build on a DNS entry and secure that address either through the product or by implementing basic auth at the web server. You could use a temporary DNS address, but with products such as Discourse that just isn’t necessary.

I’m not sure who would have pitched that as a launch/development strategy. It unnecessarily complicates any testing and eliminates portability.


You can always use manually entered local / internal DNS entries, there’s also “split horizon” DNS.


Thanks for the replies. We decided to go with an in-house solution (not just because of the DNS stuff), but I’ll keep Discourse in mind for future projects.