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I have set up a website (LAMP) in a VPS from a hosting company.

I'm wondering, in what circumstances would I want to set up a DNS server on my VPS?

Because from what I have learned basically a DNS server just converts domain names into IP addresses. And at the moment my domain provider is doing this in their DNS server.

So in what situations do I benefit from setting up my own DNS server?

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If you have to ask... The answer is no. – Jon Rhoades Apr 5 '10 at 9:50
up vote 8 down vote accepted

You almost never want a DNS server on your VPS. The only exception would be when you make tens, hundreds, thousands of name lookups a second and want them cached. But that situation is extremely rare.

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do you specifically mean "on my VPS" or do you mean i will never want a DNS server at all? – ajsie Apr 5 '10 at 5:54
At all. But your question asked "on my VPS" so I addressed that. – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Apr 5 '10 at 6:04

In your situation you will not need to set up DNS. Even if your hit rate grow to the point where your VPS could no longer handle the load, the hosting company's DNS servers will still handle it easily.

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are there situations i do need a dns server? im trying to figure that out.. – ajsie Apr 5 '10 at 8:37
For the situation you described I doubt you will ever require your own DNS server. Only if your hosting company cannot meet your needs will you need to start looking into setting up your own. While it's a trivial thing to set up there's no point in creating extra work for yourself if it's not required. – John Gardeniers Apr 6 '10 at 2:05

You benefit from installing a DNS server when you need exotic resource records that you cannot set on the hosting provider's DNS server, or when you want to manually adjust settings like caching.

Some people might cite performance as a reason, but the hosting provider's servers will usually be much more powerful than your VPS (they may be more loaded, though).

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but if servers in an internal network want to communicate with other internal servers by domain names then i need a internal dns server? lets say its 50 machines, and it wouldnt be good to update each machines hosts file right? so i need a central list for converting hostnames to ip? correct me if im wrong. – ajsie Apr 5 '10 at 9:47
You can set the records on only one server, and have the others copy records from this server over the network/internet via AXFR (DNS zone transfer). – fahadsadah Apr 5 '10 at 10:19

Running your own DNS servers will give you extra work and won't (usually) be as stable as your domain provider's DNS servers. Having your own nameservers is nice from a vanity point of view, especially if you are hosting sites for other people - it feels better to tell people to point their domains to than

However, given a choice of your single server, or a farm of several servers run by your domain provider, the choice is obvious.

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