Many moons ago I used Nicnames as registrar for my domain(s).
They were a small company and easy going at buy, changing nameservers ...etc but their hosting was over priced.
Then awhile ago they were bought out by Iomart (I think) and this is where it started going down hill with customer services.
Soon after Internetters appeared all over the place.
The control panel to manage domains was switched to java and was honestly so slow it was pointless managing domains via it. I faxed them it was less hassle.
More recent they've been 'in bed' with EasySpace.
The control panel is managed still by Internetters but customer support appears to goto EasySpace.
The control panel isn't java 'heavy' now but their site hangs so bad it times-out.
It's an horrendous experience and something I've seen getting steadily worse so I let my domains lapse rather than pay for a further 1 or 2 years as I couldn't face the hassle from doing simplistic tasks as updating nameservers ...etc.
So now it goes like this (and has done for a good long while):
You login via Internetters but the nicnames website has EasySpace all over it, you goto manage domains which does go through Internetters but after awful attempts of waiting ... waiting ... for their website to load to manage domains you then goto customer services to complain and or email form them your instruction which is done via the EasySpace login CP.
All-in-all the system is so splintered you loose who you're with (Nominet shows Internetters), the control panel is next to useless as it's so, so slow it times out (this has been the case for many, many months - since they all got engaged).
The telephone number advertised on Internetters is a 'dead' number it doesn't exist.
You manage to put up with the waiting and do change your nameservers it takes Internetters ages to update Nominet.
I know they proberbly do it every so often in bulk throughout the day as opposed to individual but, they don't do anything on weekends!
In contrast my other registrar UK plc who I've been using for years to register my domains (wasn't going to continue with Nicnames, Iomart, Internetters, EasySpace ...) you log-in fast, update nameservers happens within minutes any time and or day plus support answers quickly and friendly and everything via one place.
I really don't think NicNames, Iomart, Internetters, EasySpace ....etc have thought this 'going to bed together' right as it's simply a waste of time with them now.
I would've moved my domain(s) out to another registrar but, they wanted £90 + VAT ages ago and when I looked last night this has gone down to £15, so in the next few weeks I am going to move my remaining (domains) to UK Plc with my other collection as they are so quick, easy and simple.
Hope my experience helps someone make an informed choice when buying domains
I think it's Iomart that's the parent company - i.e., they've bought all the others.
Good to see they've stopped charging that ridiculous GBP 90 tag change fee. I suspect the reason is that no one actually paid it because it was so much cheaper to go direct to Nominet. Nominet's charge has gone down from GBP 15 to GBP 10, so Iomart still charges more than Nominet - but I don't think one can argue about a GBP 5 difference. (BTW ALL of that GBP 15 is going to Iomart, tag changes are free when they are initiated by tagholders)
This all sounds pretty bad, but to give them their due... I don't know if there is any way of doing .uk updates fully automatically because the only way .uk domains can be updated is by way of a PGP-signed email to Nominet's automaton.
Or are there scripts available that will do this automatically, pass phrase and all?
I didn't know that registrars had to use signed PGP to submit a template to nominet to update the registry.
Their must be some sort of automation (unless ukplc have someone availabe 24/7/365) as I've been changing hosts for the past 7+ days (back and forth and then ended up back at my original host but, that's another story!) and no matter when I've changed them (even at 2-3am and on Sat. nights and Sunday) within a few minutes the nominet registry has updated with my new nameservers. Very impressive.
I won't repeat my debacle with Nicnames/Iomart/Internetters/EasySpace (see above).