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DNS Tutorials

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Solaris DNS Tutorial

DNS HOWTO -- Nicolai Langfeldt HOWTO become a totally small time DNS admin.

1. Preamble

2. Introduction.

3. A caching only name server.

4. A simple domain.

5. A real domain example

6. Maintenance

7. Converting from version 4 to version 8

8. Questions and Answers

9. How to become a bigger time DNS admin.

Everything Solaris/DNS for dummies

DNS can be intimidating at first. What files do I modify? What do I put in them? How does it apply to Solaris, specifically? If you're used to another operating system, Solaris, like any new platform - might not be immediately obvious, as there are a few pecularities you should be aware of. This article will discuss DNS related issues under Solaris, using version 7 as the reference platform and the stock Sun version of BIND.

Further down, BIND v9.1.0 will be discussed as an upgrade to the stock version. You should definately consider upgrading this way, as there are several security holes that can compromise root on your box with the stock BIND v8.1.2 that ships with Solaris 7.

A few key terms to understand are needed before we dive in. BIND refers to the software that you will be interacting with. What it does is provide a domain name server (DNS) that translates hostnames into valid (hopefully) IP addresses. When it is running on your system, you will often see a process called named or in.named.

It's really quite simple to get going and keep DNS maintained. We won't be getting too involved in complex DNS setups, but will illustrate all the basics needed to get most jobs done and get you up and running in the least amount of time.

There are several ways to provide a name resolution to your local machine and it's users or to your entire office - or even the Internet in general. Among the possibilities are:

Depending on these needs determines how you will be setting up DNS and which files are to be modified and maintained. You should decide ahead of time what your needs are, but keep in mind that you can always modify this behavior at a later time quite readily.

Goals for this Article

Name Service and Resolver Configuration discusses named and bind configuration.

From The Network Administrators' Guide by Olaf Kirch/Andrew Anderson.

Setting up a basic DNS server for a domain by Craig Richmond

Good tutorial document, now somewhat out of date. Part of the BIND distribution.


Name Server Operations Guide for BIND by Paul Vixie (originally by Kevin J Dunlap and Michael J Karels). Generally known as the BOG; part of the BIND distribution. Here are local HTML (conversion by Graeme Cox), PostScript and text copies.  For BIND 4.x
Dealing with Lame Delegations by Bryan Beecher Describes the lamers tool to detect and flag lame delegations.
DNS Demystified by Al Berg Short operational overview.
DNS for Internet Administrators by András Salamon Slides for one-day DNS course, from October 1996.
The Internet Cookbook: DNS by Robert J. Kohlhepp
Examples of building a DNS, with sample database files; from a series of articles in Network Computing Online, February 1997.
Features of BIND 8.2 by Cricket Liu
Summary of new features of BIND 8.2, by the author of the standard cricket book. 14-Jan-2000
`Keeping track of names and information: the domain system', Section 5 of Introducti on to the Internet Protocols by Charles L. Hedrick. This is a well-known paper from 1987, made available in HTML by Steven E. Newton.
Passive DNS Replication
Describes building partial zone files based on observing the query traffic at a third party name server, by Florian Weimer. 
Setting Up Your Own DNS by Gary Kessler
Thorough practical overview.
Style Guide for Zone Files by Paul Vixie
The recommended style for manually maintained zone files, from the maintainer of BIND. Highly recommended.


A Survey of DNS Tools by Cricket Liu  Outdated
A comparison of nslookup, dig, host, doc, dnswalk, dnsparse and h2n. Slides presented in February 1993.
10 DNS Errors That Will Kill Your Network by Bill Boswell
Common DNS errors in Microsoft Windows environments. Many of these problems are not specific to Windows. (checked 07-Sep-2004)
Tricks of the BIND Trade by Cricket Liu
Slides presented in February 1993. Some of the material is outdated.
Webmonkey's quick overview
Very quick overview of DNS from Webmonkey.
What is a domain? by Mark R. Horton
Introductory paper, similar to but easier to read than the fundamental RFCs. Part of the BIND distribution.

Spitzner, Lance. "DNS Access." 26 January 2000.
URL: (21 July, 2000).

Gray, Damon. "The "IN-ADDR.ARPA" domain and it’s relation to DNS."
URL: (23 July, 2000).

Index of pubdocsunix-tutorials courses


The Last but not Least Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage and those who manage what they do not understand ~Archibald Putt. Ph.D

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Created May 16, 1996; Last modified: March 12, 2019