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Availability Check Working Better Than Ever!

About 2 days ago, we implemented the second API for availability checking.

As mentioned in our previous post, we were having a few issues with the Namecheap.com API.  Although our clients didn’t consider it a “deal-breaker”, it was certainly annoying.  Essentially, when checking domains for availability, the Namecheap API would return an error and the application would stop.  The user would then have to click START again.

But, this really bothered us.

The reason I created Domain Spoon in the first place is because I wanted something automatic to a large degree.  I wanted to be able to throw up to 100,000 URLs into an application, click START and then walk away.  I wanted to come back to a completed job… not an error message.

So, given the fact that the Namecheap API was causing more errors than I felt comfortable with, I decided that we should find a backup API that could check availability when Namecheap was being temperamental.

So, we found it and implemented it.

So far, the backup API has worked better than we could have hoped.  When the Namecheap API fails, the application uses the backup API and continues on.

Now, if the user gets an error, it means that BOTH of the APIs have failed.  This should be very rare.

Hopefully, this will help our customers (both new and existing) find expired domains faster and allow my application to live up to my original “vision” of having a stable, highly-automatic expired domain finding application.

4 Responses to “Availability Check Working Better Than Ever!”


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    Bryan
    March 1, 2013 at 6:52 pm #

    Bradley,

    Thanks for getting this going. You may know this already, but several.co.uk, .org.uk and .me.uk domains filtered through as available yesterday afternoon in DS. This may be a new glitch… My excitement when viewing the metrics of these “available” domains was short-lived as a quick check showed that these domains were indeed not expired.


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    Bradley
    March 2, 2013 at 4:04 am #

    Thanks for the comment, Bryan.

    There has a been a long-standing bug in the Namecheap API that allows some domains to show as available when they are really not. This happens most often with .NZ domains, but has been known to happen with other domains too.

    Unfortunately, I am not sure if I can completely rule out all API glitches (since I have not control over those), but my goal is to get the app as close to “perfect” as possible.


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    Bryan
    March 2, 2013 at 5:54 am #

    Bradley, thanks for the info. I just wanted to let you know since I hadn’t come across this until yesterday and considering your recent switch to a backup API for availability checking, I thought it might be a newly introduced bug. Perhaps it’s just a coincidence.


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    Bradley
    March 2, 2013 at 4:10 pm #

    It could be a new bug. I will certainly keep my eye on it. We did have a problem recently in which someone was using the app with Chrome and was using the DVDvideosoftTB Chrome extension, and it was screwing up their results. The extension modifies AJAX requests (AJAX is the programming language we used to code Domain Spoon), which produces a lot of bugs and erroneous results. You wouldn’t happen to be using that Chrome extension, would you?

    But, yes, it could be the new API. The downside of adding more API service providers into the mix is that although you have the potential to add more features and stability into the application, you can also introduce more anomalies. Every API service provider have their own quirks, limitations, and problems. So, there may be a few kinks to work out. Ultimately, however, I believe that this is a huge step in the right direction.

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