Error Message FAIL

I was working on a server migration last night. In process, I set up the DNS for the mail servers. When I entered the value for the DNS server EXACTLY like Google said, I got the below error:

Alert: The domain was not added due to an error in the dns settings. Please check your dns template and verify. The message from the dns server was dns_rdata_fromtext: :26: near 'ASPMX2.GOOGLEMAIL.COM..': empty labelzone loading master file : empty label

Since I don't speak fluent Southern Klingon, my mistake was not immediately obvious. I, of course, tried to submit the form several more times. When I finally read the error message, I realized the Control Panel wants to be the one to add the trailing period (.). Removing my trailing period fixed it.

This is the most indirect, least helpful error message I've seen all month. I vow in 2009 to do better than these guys when alerting my users to issues.

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12/31/08 2:18 PM # Posted By jason olmsted

The problem with southern klingon is the slow drawl ... bad enough it sounds like bodily functions, but it just keeps going.

Anyway, I think part of the problem, and something to consider for the future is that the web-based dns manager was actually trying to make your life easier - they might even had been happy with themselves for the logic of it (most people wouldn't think to add the trailing dot) - though, yeah, the error message is pretty awful. Of course, had they provided examples of the form of valid data, it might all be moot.

Anyway, thanks for the post as it is a good resolution, and it's given me pause to remember that trying to be helpful can have unintended consequences.