[conspire] Paging Jonathan Swift

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Tue Sep 13 18:42:40 PDT 2011

I was just doing a little thinking about the notion that poor ordinary
users can't possibly run recursive DNS nameservers such as Unbound.

I've come to the conclusion it's quite true.

Installation is simply too challenging for ordinary users:  You have to
do an ordinary package fetch of one distro package, 'unbound'.
Configuration is also too challenging for ordinary users:  No
configuration is required.  Administration is likewise too challenging
for ordinary users:  No administration is required.

Since the above is clearly well outside the abilities of ordinary users,
it needs to be left to ex-staff accountants.

Actually, though, there's worse news.  It's also impossible for ordinary
users to run Linux at all.

Why do I say that?  Because any Linux distribution includes a DNS
nameserver, of a type called a 'stub resolver', implemented as a set of
routines inside glibc.  See:  https://lwn.net/Articles/289179/

Admittedly, glibc's stub resolver is not capable of doing recursive
lookups, and is not capable of caching its results, but it's an
undeniable fact that it _is_ a DNS nameserver, _and_ that it requires
precisely the same amount of configuration and administration as Unbound

So, I figure that means you folks cannot run Linux at all -- not even
the Linux distribution with an ancient African name meaning 'can't
install Debian'.

Further bad news:  You _also_ cannot possibly run Microsoft Windows.
on account of Windows\system32\DNSCACHE.DLL , which is, yes, a DNS
nameserver (specifically, yet another stub resolver).

Oh noes!  Macintosh OS X includes a stub resolver, too!

I suggest MS-DOS.  But watch out for TCP/IP stacks.

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