— 4 min read

Custom Domains with GitHub Pages

This post is about setting up custom domain names when your site is hosted on GitHub Pages. It’s apparently off-topic on a blog about React Native but I was just surprised by the lack of proper step-by-step guides even on GitHub itself.

The Goal

  1. Host a website (e.g. this blog) on GitHub Pages (well, it’s free and working great, who can resist that!).
  2. Instead of the domain, I’d like to use my own domain name:
  3. By default, I’d like to use the www subdomain and redirect the “naked” domain to the www subdomain, that is: ==> This is because GitHub strongly recommends the use of www subdomain:
  • It gives your GitHub Pages site the benefit of our Content Delivery Network.
  • It is more stable because it is not affected by changes to the IP addresses of GitHub’s servers.
  • Pages will load significantly faster because Denial of Service attack protection can be implemented more efficiently.


Below I’m going to use this blog as an example, but of course you can replace it with the info and domain of your own site:

  1. First of all, create a public repo on GitHub named react-native-diary-blog. On its gh-pages branch, make sure all the site content is there.
  2. On gh-pages branch, create a file named CNAME with only one line Note, this file can only include one domain, don’t put multiple domain names here. If you’d like to support multiple domains, you probably want to set up 301 redirects on other domains.
  3. On your DNS provider’s site, create a CNAME record:
www ==>

Of course, the value of your record should be See more details here.

4. On your DNS provider’s site, create two A records for both www and


NOTE: If your DNS provider supports ALIAS or ANAME records instead of A records, see [GitHub’s doc] for details. I don’t personally have any experience in this yet.

It’ll take a while (in my case a couple of hours) for the DNS setting to take effect. When everything is set up properly, you should be able to see this in the repo’s settings:



This is it. After this setup, GitHub should be able to automatically redirect the “naked” domain ( to the www subdomain. Hopefully you’ll find it more useful than GitHub’s this, this, or this pages.