I wouldn't ask someone "Wie ist dein Name?" because wie means how, so Wie ist dein Name? translates to: How is your name? and then the other person could answer something like "my name is doing pretty well". However, you can ask "Wie heißt du?" (informal) or "Wie heißen Sie?" (formal).
According to another source, "Wie ist dein Vorname?" (Name, in your cases) is actually still used in German as a strange oddity despite falling out of use in English. That being said, for the sake of all of us who want to learn German, I think "Was ist dein Vorname?" is better as it is one less anomaly to memorize and should still make sense to a native German speaker.
Exactly. We have to remember that languages do not translate 1:1, and what seems odd in direct machine translation to English may not be odd in another language. I have spoken to many people from many different areas who all near-instinctively use "how" rather than "what" until they're corrected (and even then might use "how" unconsciously - "how is your name?" "How is your town called?")
My (raised speaking German) husband says, the "Wie ist" version sounds fine to him, but it implies something different - if you ask somebody, "Wie ist dein Name?", he says, you are asking how the name is spelled, or if you are looking at the printed name, you are asking how the name is pronounced. That is, the word for "spelled" or "pronounced" is implied. He says Germans do this a lot - leave off words that can logically be inferred. (ha ha - just what we learners needed to hear)
It's a legitimate English word and means "first name." http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/forename
It’s a subtle difference. “Was ist dein Vorname?” (what) would be used as when somebody is asking you your name for the first time, while “Wie ist dein Vorname?” (how) sounds a bit more like asking how you say it or write it exactly, as if the person hadn’t understood it at first.
or "zweiter Name" http://dictionnaire.reverso.net/anglais-allemand/middle%20name (Don't forget the 'e' in zweiter.) http://dictionnaire.reverso.net/anglais-allemand/middle%20name
What's the difference between "Vorname" and "Vornamen"? A few questions back, I got "Ich kenne deinen Vornamen", but now this question is "Was ist dein Vorname?" What's going on here? I tried inputting "Ich kenne deinen Vorname", and Duo was all like "Nope. You're wrong, bud. Shoulda' been Vornamen."
The last sentence of my above post is a link to a page about it. Here's another one: http://www.vistawide.com/german/grammar/german_nouns03.htm
And I don't think About explain it very well, but you might prefer their table-light approach: http://german.about.com/od/grammar/a/dernouns.htm
There are some websites that have the 'ending with e is feminine' rule:
Only the middle link works now, which redirects to here:
"Which is your name?" simply doesn't work in English (it's too closed for someone to answer with their name, for one thing - but even if you were trying to match a guest to a guestlist you'd be likelier to ask "who are you?" or "what's your name?"; "which is your name?" always sounds odd). "Was" can be translated as "which" in other contexts, but we always have to take context into account.
After 7 years, NOTHING has changed and this blatant error has not been addressed! The word 'forename' is widely used here in the UK, yet I also got a red error message for using it. It is formal, but used frequently on forms and officially in conversation. Perfectly correct ENGLISH, albeit British; and not the American English that Duolingo seems to employ. Yet Duolingo is still marking it as incorrect.