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IDN - technical specifications

Friday 03 February 2012 15:24:00

AFNIC will shortly be opening the registration of IDNs (Internationalized Domain Name). [...]

This new feature will extend the number of characters used to compose a domain name label to 67 (37 to date), for all of the 6 extensions currently managed by our organization (.fr, .re, .tf, .wf, .pm, and .yt)

The document explains the changes you will see on our interfaces can be found here :

It also details the opening procedure, which will involve 2 phases (sunrise and rush) and to which the following schedule will apply.

The opening schedule is as follows (the exact times will be announced later):

  • 3 February 2012: Publication of the specifications for registrars.
  • 3 May 2012: Launch of the IDN sunrise period with the "Grandfathering" rule.
  • 3 July 2012: Opening with IDN attribution according to the "first come, first served" rule.

We should like to take this opportunity to thank you once again for replying in so many numbers to the questionnaire we sent out mid January on the subject, which allowed us to validate various options.

Please note that the terms and conditions to register domain names subject to prior review will be finalized soon. We will inform you as soon as possible specific rules that will be implemented.

Thank you for your attention. Should you have any questions we shall be happy to provide you with any additional information you may require so that you can fully inform your customers about this new feature. Please do not hesitate to contact your customer service representative or our support department by telephone to the +33 1 39 30 83 00 or by mail


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Afnic (the French acronym for "Association Française pour le Nommage Internet en Coopération" i.e. the French Network Information Centre), is a non-profit association created in 1997. Appointed by the French State to manage domain names under the .fr Top Level Domain (TLD) it promotes use of .fr by entrepreneurs and individuals. As the historic manager with more than 3 million domain names in .fr to date, it is also positioned as a provider of technical solutions and registry services: it currently manages 14 projects for new gTLDs, including .paris and .bzh. Afnic is located in Saint-Quentin en Yvelines, where its staff of 80 works for the common good of the French Internet.