[sf-lug] looking for a domain name service provider

vincent polite vpolitewebsiteguy at yahoo.com
Thu Aug 21 12:10:44 PDT 2008

Thanks Rick,
You've expanded my knowledge and I appreciate that.

And Jim,
If I have the time, I'd like to help you with that. 


Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> wrote: Quoting vincent polite (vpolitewebsiteguy at yahoo.com):

> Well, I can't claim to be an authority. But since DNS is basically a
> database relating the domain name to the the IP address, It doesn't
> seem like it would be to hard to do. I'm not sure how it spreads
> across the net. 

To further clarify, server-end DNS is of two types:  Either your server
is publishing DNS data, or it's not (and is merely fetching, providing,
and caching as necessary DNS data published elsewhere).

o  Publishing DNS data is called running an "authoritative nameserver".
o  Handing other folks' DNS data is called running a "recursive nameserver".

If you own a domain, you'll want to have it be served up by minimum two 
authoritative nameservers operating on fixed IP addresses somewhere in
the world.  (The RFC-recommended numbers are minimum three, maximum

So, folks generally don't need to even consider operating authoritative
nameservice:  Only domain owners do.

On the other hand, _everyone_ has reason to run a recursive (aka
"recursive-resolver") nameserver on the local LAN or local machine.
One reason:  Not doing so throws away siginficant bandwidth and
performance on the traffic overhead and delays resulting from 
unnecessary DNS-query transactions across your upstream link.
Another reason:  Security.  ISP nameservers tend to have extremely bad
security (and reliability, and performance).

The smaller your network operation, and the less bandwidth you have to
waste, the greater your advantage from a local recursive nameserver.
Yet, these are the exact people whose reaction to my suggestion is
inevitably "Oh, my computing's too small, simple, and slow to need a
nameserver.  Besides, it's too difficult to do."

Here's how you turn on PowerDNS Recursor on Ubuntu:

$ sudo apt-get install pdns-recursor

That's it.  PowerDNS Recursor is now running and will handle recursive
queries posed to it, and will cache that data, saving bandwidth on
repeat queries (which happen a great deal).

You _do_ need to set the local machine to send its queries there.  
A *ix machine's DNS client library is configured via /etc/resolv.conf .
Edit that file to have this one "nameserver" line and no other
"nameserver" lines:


You also need to make sure your DHCP client software (if any) doesn't
overwrite that namserver line.  There are many ways to do this; the
least complex is to install the "resolvconf" package.  (Just install it;
the DHCP client should then do The Right Thing.)

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