Technology - Internet 4 - The Domain Name System


DNS converts from text names to numeric IP addresses, giving the Internet tremendous flexibility and robustness. The operation of primary, secondary and caching name servers is explained. Generic and country code top level domains are discussed. We provide a tutorial on registering a domain, choosing a hosting company and delegating the domain to the hosting company. Reverse address lookups from IP address to text names are explained.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Synopsis
  • 2. The Domain Name System – DNS
    • 2.1 Text names and IP addresses
    • 2.2 Name servers
      • 2.2.1 Primary name server
      • 2.2.2 Secondary or backup name server
      • 2.2.3 Caching name server
    • 2.3 Example of a primary name server
    • 2.4 Sub-domains
    • 2.5 IDNA - non-Latin characters in domain names
      • 2.5.1 Punycode encoding
      • 2.5.2 Security problems - spoofing
    • 2.6 Top Level Domains
      • 2.6.1 Generic TLDs
      • 2.6.2 Country Code TLDs
  • 3. Registering a Domain Name
    • 3.1 Establishing the domain
    • 3.2 Choosing a hosting company
    • 3.3 Nameserver management is often neglected
    • 3.4 Delegating the domain
    • 3.5 Redelegating to another hosting company
  • 4. DNS in action – translating a name into an IP address
    • 4.1 Distributed name servers
      • 4.1.1 The root name servers and anycasting
    • 4.2 Caching the result
      • 4.2.1 Controlling the name server for shorter caching times
    • 4.3 Reverse address translation
  • 5. Related reports
  • Exhibit 1 – Generic Top Level Domains
  • Exhibit 2 – Australian Second Level Domains

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Telecoms Infrastructure

Number of pages 12

Status Archived

Last updated 16 Jan 2007
Update History

Analyst: Robin Whittle

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