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After running a dig on an old domain name moved from an old server to a new one, completely different IP and provider, I ran a dig and found that the listed nameserver does not match the one in the whois. The whois shows the new nameserver, but the dig shows the old. Which one is more accurate?

Also, the dig shows an additional FQDN that I've never seen before. The {bracketed} have been replaced with general identifiers.

@root: dig +nocmd {} any +multiline +noall +answer

{} 14400 IN A {IP address}
{} 86400 IN SOA {old name server.} {unknown, never-been-referenced domain} (
2010062900 ; serial
86400 ; refresh (1 day)
7200 ; retry (2 hours)
3600000 ; expire (5 weeks 6 days 16 hours)
86400 ; minimum (1 day)
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I'm worried because it seems different people load the domain, pointing to the old server, while others, point to the new. Also, yesterday, I experienced the domain switching from the new, then back to the old, then back again, several times. – inac Jun 29 '10 at 9:14
tell us the real domain name so we can check it from here – Alnitak Jun 29 '10 at 9:43 – inac Jun 30 '10 at 10:42
with proper nameservers supposed to be , ..., are old ones – inac Jul 1 '10 at 4:04

whois is essentially a contact database and whilst it may mirror some details from DNS, DNS is the authoritative source, not whois.

{} 86400 IN SOA {old name server.} {unknown, never-been-referenced domain} 

{old name server} is the master name (MNAME) server field in your zones SOA record. This isn't relevant to clients resolving records in your domains.

{unknown, never-been-referenced domain} is the responsible name (RNAME) field in your zones SOA record and is actually not a domain name, but an email address for the person responsible for the zone. The first label text (text before the first period) is the mailbox name and the remainder is the destination domain. Eg: would become

By the by, not including your actual domain is a useless hindrance to getting people to help you.

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I receive a series of similar results for a number of domains, so I thought to generalize into {bracketed}. How do you update the MNAME? – inac Jun 30 '10 at 6:12
As it's a field in the zones SOA record it'll depend on the software or hosting provider you're using. Some hosting providers will not allow you to alter it. The field is only relevant in master/slave configurations and even then a lot of DNS servers no longer make use of this field. Do you have any particular reason for being concerned about it's content? – andrewtj Jun 30 '10 at 9:36

What do you mean the "The whois shows the new nameserver"? whois is not for determining nameservers. whois is used to check what the registrar that the domain name is registered at reports the name server to be set at. Which could be bogus. AFAIK, no name resolution tools or software use this info. They do a name query to a name server's port 53. If the whois server reports something incorrect to you, maybe there is something funny with the whois server.

dig can be used for lookups.

If you are worried about your nameserver settings, try an online tool. Maybe try

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whois is also used to check what the official registries think the name servers should be. – Alnitak Jun 29 '10 at 9:43
Which server is the dig spitting the data from? – inac Jun 29 '10 at 9:45
I edited the answer to make it more clear and detailed. HTH – d-_-b Jun 30 '10 at 0:31

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