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Down the Rabbit Hole: Ethereum Name Service, Your Web3 Username!

Are you also fed up with that 0X… address depicted on your crypto wallets and everywhere you make a transaction?

Well, ENS is there for you with the most amazing naming services!

ENS (Ethereum Name Services) refers to an open, distributed, and wider, Ethereum-based naming service provider. It lets you map the human-readable naming formats to your crypto address. ENS and DNS have similar goals; both operate over domains with dot-separated hierarchical names. The domain owner then entirely controls all the subdomains.

Smart contracts (also known as registrars) own leading domains, including '.test' and '.eth.' Anyone may gain domain ownership by following a certain set of rules required by these registrar contracts.

Because of ENS's hierarchical design, anyone owning a domain can set up subdomains for themselves or others. ENS is live on Ethereum's main network and a few test networks, and you can buy any available ENS from the official website.

So far, there are more than 825k names registered on ENS with 502 integrations in all and 349k owners.

Source: https://dune.xyz/makoto/ens

ENS Architecture

The two primary components of ENS are Registry and Resolvers.

Registry

The ENS registry has a smart contract to keep track of all the domains and subdomains and holds three key bits of data for each of them:

  • The domain's owner
  • The domain's resolver
  • The domain's caching time-to-live (TTL) for all records

Owner: A domain's owner can be an external account or a smart contract. This entity is a smart contract owning a domain and issuing the subdomains to users who adhere to the contract's requirements. Domain owners can change the domain's resolver and TTL, transfer ownership to some other address, and alter the subdomains' ownership.

Resolver

A resolver is mainly responsible to translate the human-readable names into addresses.

Namehash

ENS relies solely on 256-bit cryptographic hashes. Namehash helps derive the hash from a name while keeping the hierarchal features.

Names are first normalized using the UTS-46 normalization method before being hashed with namehash. This guarantees that upper and lower case names are processed equally, and invalid characters are not allowed. To guarantee that all existing users have a consistent representation of ENS, everything that hashes and resolves a name should first normalize it.

How to buy ENS?

Here are the steps that you need to follow to buy an ENS:

  • Click on ‘Go to App’ from the top right corner.
  • Click on ‘Connect’ from top left corner and login to your wallet.
  • Search for a name and check for its availability
  • Click on it and check all the details.
  • Click on register to check all the pricing details.
  • Confirm the transaction if you think that the amount to be paid is valid and get the ENS registered.

What is the difference between a "registrant" and a "controller" of a name?

The account that owns the .eth domain is known as the registrant. They can change the controller address and transfer ownership to another account. The owner of the token that represents the name is the registrant.

The controller is the account that manages the name's day-to-day operations, such as adding subdomains, configuring the resolver, etc.

How to Import a DNS Domain Name to ENS?

ENS management enables anyone to send the chain's hash to DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extensions) if it is activated and an ETH address is inserted into the subdomain of the owned domain. This section will walk you through the process of importing an existing DNS domain name into ENS.

Before you get started

  1. The name you want to import into ENS must already exist on DNS. On ENS, you can't claim a DNS name that you don't already hold on DNS.
  2. You'll need an Ethereum account to get started. Ethereum accounts hold and control ENS names, including DNS domains imported to ENS. There are numerous Ethereum wallet providers from which to create and manage an Ethereum account.
  3. You'll need some ETH to get started. Although there is no ENS protocol charge for DNS names imported into ENS, paying an Ethereum network gas fee in ETH during the importing process is necessary.

Steps

Step 1: Connecting the wallet to ENS Manager App

Navigate to the app.ens.domains in your web browser to access the ENS Manager App.

Click "Connect" in the upper-left corner of the screen, select your wallet or wallet connect option, and then confirm connecting to the ENS Manager App by following the steps in your wallet.

Step 2: Look up the name.

Search for the DNS domain name you wish to import into ENS and click it in the search results.

You should be able to discover a page that depicts the phases involved in the importation process. Keep this tab open because you'll need it later in the procedure.

Step 3: Enable DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extensions)

If DNSSEC isn't already enabled, go to your DNS Registrar's settings for your domain name and enable it.

Click "DNS" on the left-hand side of the page to discover it in Google Domains. DNSSEC is commonly enabled by default on Google Domains. However, if it isn't already enabled, turn it on.

How to Set up DNSSEC signing?

You will have to find someone who does if they don't, like Google Cloud DNS or EasyDNS.

Choose RSA signatures and SHA256 hashing from whatever source you require.

Step 4: Create a TXT file

Set a record with the hostname "_ens," type "TXT," and the data "a=[your Ethereum address]" in the "Custom Records" section.

The Ethereum address you enter in the data part of the above format will be the Ethereum address that manages your DNS name.

You'll need to return here and alter the address if you wish to change the Ethereum account that controls your DNS name on ENS in the future.

Step 5: Open the ENS Manager App again.

Return to the ENS Manager App's page for your name. (Visit the app.ens.domains and search for the name if you closed your previous tab.)

Check to ensure that your name has DNSSEC enabled and the TXT record exists by refreshing the page.

Even if you already have it set up in the right manner on the DNS side, it may take some time for your DNS records to propagate and appear.

In the interim, feel free to leave the tab open or shut it; you can always return to the app.ens.domains and browse the name to return to the same page and check the status.

Step 6: Create an ENS account for the name.

Click the blue "Register" button once the steps "Enable DNSSEC" and "Add Text" have gone green. If the option to "Register" is still greyed out, it's since you need to connect the wallet. Go to the left-hand side of the page and select "Connect," then connect your Ethereum wallet.

Your wallet will prompt you to confirm a transaction for the DNS name's import into ENS once you click "Register." This is where things start to become expensive.

It's worth noting that there's no charge for utilizing a DNS name on ENS. The Ethereum network gas fee fully determines the cost of importing. There is no ongoing ENS cost once the name has been imported.

Click "Confirm" to submit the transfer if the estimated gas price displayed by your wallet is satisfactory to you and you have sufficient ETH in your wallet for covering the cost.

The importing procedure is complete after the transaction on the Ethereum network confirms, and you then receive your DNS name on ENS!

Step 7: Organize Your Name

Your name's ENS records can be found by clicking "View in Manager" in the bottom right corner.

Your ETH Address record has been set up automatically, as you can see. You can start receiving ETH or any NFT or Ethereum-based token in compatible wallets using your name immediately.

Click "Add/Edit Record" to add or edit other records, like a BTC address or an avatar text record.

Then fill in any records you'd like.

If you'd like to create a record for anything that doesn't already have a field displayed by default, such as a cryptocurrency like ETC, select the type of record you'd like to create from the drop-down menu, then input the data for the record and click "Save."

After completing all of the forms, scroll down to the bottom and click "Confirm." The ENS Manager App will display the records you're creating and prompt you to confirm them. Next, the wallet will ask you to confirm the transaction to set the records.

Your records will be set after confirming the transaction on the Ethereum network.

Step 8: Begin recording in reverse

This is the final phase! On the left side of the page, click "My Account."

Select the name if you don't already have a reverse record established, and if you'd like to set it to the registered name, click Save. Your wallet will then ask you to confirm the transaction before submitting it.

One of your ENS names is designated as your Ethereum account's cross-platform web3 login in your reverse record. Once you've set it up, you'll notice it appears in dapps.

Once the domain is registered, how to transfer or delete ownership?

Unlike the .eth permanent registrar, there is no concept of a registrant transferring the controller's ownership. Change the DNS record from the DNS manager and select "Transfer" if you want to transfer the ownership to any address besides the presently registered address.

There is no ability to delete ownership just yet.

How much does it cost to register a .eth domain?

Currently, the following prices apply to registration:

  • .eth names with 5+ characters cost $5 per year in ETH.
  • 4 character .eth names cost $160 per year in ETH.
  • 3 character .eth names cost $640 per year in ETH.

Because fewer 3 and 4 character names are available, their prices are higher.

ENS Token and DAO Overview

Community members will directly vote on a proposed ENS Constitution, rules, and standards for the community during the first week of the claim process.

The $ENS token holders will get a chance to vote on a proposal to formally request from the root key holders the power to:

  • govern protocol settings, such as .ETH pricing,
  • the price oracle, and more control funds from the existing community treasury, and also receive future revenue.

There are a total of 100M $ENS for supply. Here are the details regarding $ENS claiming ratios:

Source: https://dune.xyz/hildobby/ENS-Airdrop

To be put to the vote, proposals must have at least 100,000 tokens of support and a simple majority vote with a quorum of at least 1% of all tokens.

Venues

It is a Discourse forum for discussions about governance. Before sharing or liking posts, members of the community must first create an account. Members of the community can post in the general forum after registering; fill out the participant request form to access the working groups.

Meta-Governance, Community, ENS Ecosystem, and Public Goods are the four workstream categories. Each step of the governance process is divided into subcategories in each category.

  • Snapshot

Snapshot is a simple voting interface that allows users to send off-chain signals of their feelings. The number of ENS delegated to the address used to vote used to weight votes on the snapshot.

  • Governance portals

Tally is a governance platform that allows token holders to delegate their votes to delegates, which may drag and vote on legally binding proposals.

Types of Proposal

There are three types of governance proposals:

  • Executable Proposal

This is a proposal for a set of smart contract operations carried out by DAO-controlled accounts. Transfers of tokens and arbitrary smart contract calls are examples of this. Two examples are allocating funds to a workstream multisig wallet or upgrading an ENS core contract. A quorum of 1% is required to pass executable proposals, and a minimum of 50% approval is required to pass.

  • Social Proposal

This proposal seeks DAO approval for something that can't be enforced on-chain. A proposal to modify the royalty % for the ENS secondary market on OpenSea, or a petition to the root keyholders, are examples of this. The quorum threshold for SocialS initiatives is 1%, and they must have at least 50% support to pass.

  • Constitutional Amendment

This is a social proposal to modify the constitution by the DAO. Your draught proposal should include a diff showing the exact modifications you want to make to the constitution. The rules for altering the constitution are laid out in the document itself and currently require a quorum of 1% and two-thirds support to pass.

Common FAQs

1.What makes ENS different from other name services like Namecoin and Handshake?

Namecoin and Handshake attempt to replace all or part of DNS with a blockchain-based equivalent. In contrast, ENS complements and extends the usefulness of DNS with decentralized, trustworthy name resolution for web3 resources such as blockchain addresses and distributed content.

2.What information do the ENS Manager App and the Twitter bot have about the names individuals purchase?

The ENS Manager App and the Twitter bot feature built-in lists of common names culled from an English dictionary and Alexa's top 1 million domain names. These listings inform you when common names are purchased or renewed. They do this because even if the app didn't expose these names, anyone with a little technical knowledge could figure them out independently, providing them an advantage over people who don't have the resources to create their list and code to compare names to it.

3.What happens if I forget to renew a name's registration?

There is a 90-day grace period after your name expires, during which the owner cannot modify the data but may still re-register the name. Anyone with a temporary premium that decreases over 28 days can register the name following the grace period.


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