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Operational details - Liberalization of .fr and .re domain names on the 11th May 2004 (updated announce)

Home > Observatory and resources > News > Operational details - Liberalization of .fr and .re domain names on the 11th May 2004 (updated announce)

Governing principles
Registration procedures
From data acquisition to identification
The new on-line application form (1.7.4)

Governing principles

As from may 11th, 2004 the “right of name” (droit au nom) will be abolished for all registration of a domain name directly under .fr and .re by all any companies and individuals who can be identified on national public databases (INSEE, INPI, TRADE REGISTERY) from the siren, siret, rcs or trademark number maintaining the territoriality principle (administrative contact located in France).

Owner’s identification will be done after the registration of the domain name only for the following operations: domain name creation (C)
and domain name modification (N).
Concerning the ISP’s transfer (D) and domain name transmission (P) the procedure is still the same: identity check is done before the registration.

The registration of a domain name under and will remain as they are for now.

The treatment of public sub domains and sector domains (;; and so on.. ) remains the same.

Registration procedures

Legal characters for a domain name registration are: “a- z” (or equally “A-Z”), “0-9”, “-“.
All domain names are allowed except:

domain name composed by a single character,
domain name composed by two letters,
domain name beginning or finishing by “-“,
domain name beginning by xn--.

Geographical terms will be removed from the “non allocated” (forbidden terms) domain names list.

It is necessary for the Registrant to have an official ascertainable link with France (.fr) or with the French Overseas Department of La Reunion (.re) ie:

to be located in France (or La Reunion for .re),
to own an INPI trademark.

Administrative contact could be different from the registrant but must be located in France and easy to contact.

From data acquisition to identification

The operation of “Creation” (C) or “Domain Name Modification” (N) concerning a domain name under .fr, .re is automatically validated if the above criteria are respected. After receipt of the order number (following the online application), the registrar receives an “Attente Client” or “Attente Verification” ticket; then the next steps of the procedure remain the same as the one used before the liberalization:

technical check (using ZoneCheck v2),
data publishing in Whois if technical check are successful,
status ticket : “Fini”,
domain name invoicing.

Registrant identification will be proceed within a one month period after the identification ticket sending.
If, for any reason, AFNIC is unable to identify the registrant, you have a month since the email sending to provide us all necessary documentation. Out of the required time and without any elements, the domain name will be suspended for one month. By the end of this delay the domain name will be deleted without notice.

Take note:

“Transmission” (P) operations are now available through a transfer agreement.
In case of conflicts, a dispute resolution system will be proposed by competent French or international arbitration bodies in addition to the Courts.


From 5th to 26th April 2004

Monday 5th, April

The systematic sending of the commitment letter will be discontinued for all registrars (option 1 & 2) regarding the “Creation” (C) and “Transfer of Isp” (D) operations. During the five previous weeks to liberalization, the “right to a name”
will continue to be apply and the commitment letter could be requested in case of dispute.

The “Modification” (M) operation through the online application form will be replaced by 2 operations:

“Technical Modification” (T): this option is already operational and concerns only DNS modifications; the technical configuration of the domain name should be in accordance with ZoneCheck v2,

“Administrative Modification” (A): this operation initialized through the online application form will lead to an internal “Identification” ticket which enable AFNIC to follow the operation up.
This option do not allows modification on the “contact titulaire” (registrant or domain name’s owner) itself. No technical check executed.


The creation of an “Identification” ticket while an “Administrative Modification” is in process do not permit any other operation on the domain name until the “FINI” status ticket has been launched.

The maximum validity period for a ticket (3 months at the present time) is reduced to 2 months and resending will be done each couple of weeks.

Friday 16th, April

Tests on special “liberalization” email addresses are possible.

Monday 26th, April

Set up of the new online application form 1.7.4; the 1.7.2 version could be used until the liberalization but will not be valid as from 11th May 2004.

Modifications between the 2 versions are the following:

the new optional field “1e” allows the ISP to enter its own customer reference. During the liberalization period, the content
of the field will be displayed in the “Transaction-ID” field of the answer.
Afterwards, it will be used in every information exchange;

fields 4m. , 4n. , 4o. , are respectively replaced by 3r. , 3s. , 3z. (these concern registration under;

the field 3q. is added (this field concerns registration under;

fields 3t. , 3u. , 3v. are added: they are optional before prior to 11th May 2004; the 3t. and 3v. fields will be obligatory whatever the domain name and the nature of the “titulaire” (registrant or owner) are since the 11th May;

designation of all field beginning by “3” is changed: “Information concerning the holder” instead of “Information concerning the organism/requirant”;

warning : between 26 April and 11 May, you will need to continue to use form version 1.7.2 for registration.

From 6th May to 14th May 2004

Thursday 6th, May

All the tickets in process regarding domain name creation or modification which have not succeeded (for administrative or technical reasons) will be deleted by AFNIC.

All “Creation” (C) and “Modification” (N) online application forms, whatever the suffix is, are forbidden since 6.30 PM (local time).

Friday 7th, May

Every online application form will be treated (“Attente Client” or “Attente Verification” ticket sending) or will be automatically cancelled without previous communication with the ISP.

Technical installations are done as an ordinary working day.

Monday 10th, May

For all remaining tickets (“Attente Client”, “Attente Verification”, “DNS non pret”), the technical installation could be done up to 1.00 PM (local time); the ones which have not been installed would be cancelled.

From 11th May to 14th May 2004

A progressive starting procedure will be set up and and will be extended within a four days sunrise period only including registration under the following suffixes: .fr, .re.
Domain name registration for other extension (,, and so on…) are again available.

Tuesday 11th, May from 9.00 AM

It will be able to register domain names beginning by figures/letters
[0 – 9 ] + [a – b].

Wednesday 12th, May from 9.00 AM

It will be able to register domain names beginning by figures/letters
[0 – 9] + [a – b] + [c – f].

Thursday 13th, May from 9.00 AM

It will be able to register domain names beginning by figures/letters
[0 – 9] + [a – b] + [c – f] + [g – n].

Friday 14th, May from 9.00 AM

Registration is fully open to any domain name.

The new on-line application form

On-line application form to be used is the version 1.7.4.
3t. and 3v. fields are then obligatory concerning the holder (titulaire).
Holder and administrative contact addresses provided should be in accordance with the territoriality restraints.

About Afnic

Afnic is the acronym for Association Française pour le Nommage Internet en Coopération, the French Network Information Centre. The registry has been appointed by the French government to manage domain names under the .fr Top Level Domain. Afnic also manages the .re (Reunion Island), .pm (Saint-Pierre and Miquelon), .tf (French Southern and Antarctic Territories), .wf (Wallis and Futuna) and .yt (Mayotte) French Overseas TLDs.

In addition to managing French TLDs, Afnic’s role is part of a wider public interest mission, which is to contribute on a daily basis, thanks to the efforts of its teams and its members, to a secure and stable internet, open to innovation and in which the French internet community plays a leading role. As part of that mission, Afnic, a non-profit organization, has committed to devoting 11% of its Revenues from managing .fr Top Level Domain to actions of general interest, in particular by transferring €1.3 million each year to the Afnic Foundation for Digital Solidarity.
Afnic is also the back-end registry for the companies as well as local and regional authorities that have chosen to have their own TLD, such as .paris, .bzh, .alsace, .corsica, .mma, .ovh, .leclerc and .sncf.

Established in 1997 and based in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Afnic currently has nearly 90 employees.