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I have for a long time had my own "play-around" domain where I've had a minor blog running. I recently decided that I wanted to try to run my own server on it, and so I ordered a VPS for it. I have managed to relocate my site to the new server now, setting appropriate DNS records with my old providers DNS. However I would like to move the DNS to my server. I HAVE installed a DNS server on the VPS and tested that it works as it should (using nslookup and specifying which server to use).

Here is what I don't get though:

When I ask to change nameservers for my domain, and I change it to, say "" for my DNS - how is this going to be translated into an IP - when the record for this is on the exact same DNS server?

I suspect there's some reverse DNS going on here, but how does this work, and is there anything I need to do to make this work, and most importantly, is this possible at all?


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By the way, it's usually recommended not to host DNS records for a server on the server itself. – David Z Jul 13 '09 at 18:43
Am I wrong in assuming that this is "just" for "best practices"? Will I run into major trouble with this when it is just a server for my own personal play, web site/e-mail, freedom and learning? – kastermester Jul 13 '09 at 23:02
up vote 2 down vote accepted

When you specify the new DNS servers, you'll have to specify both a name AND the corresponding IP, if the name of the server is a record of the domain it is going to serve.

If the name is on another domain, providing the IP is not mandatory.

In your case, your registrar won't accept just as a server. You'll have to provide as well.

If the server was, it would validate without the IP.

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You really, really should have both the forward and reverse records for your addresses. Yeah, you can get away with just the forward, but trust me, you're just better off. – Avery Payne Jul 13 '09 at 14:28
You're most likely going to need your VPS provider to set up reverse DNS. I doubt they'd bother delegating it to you to do on your own nameserver – goo Jul 13 '09 at 14:33
Thanks :) - I figured it would be this way, only that (as mentioned by someone else) the "nice automated forms" doesn't include an IP address. I will have a go with it and see what happens. – kastermester Jul 13 '09 at 14:57

This is about a glue record and isn't anything to do with reverse DNS.

If you want as a nameserver you'll need to give the IP as well as the hostname to your registrar. As this isn't done all that often, It's unlikely you'll be able to use there nice automated forms, and will have to contact support directly.

If they do allow you to do this on a form and don't reject it if you don't give the glue record, you'll be wanting to move registrar.

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You want to read about glue records in DNS.

FWH has it right: You'll specify both the names and IPs of your own DNS servers.

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Your domain provider should have a glue record for your name server.

Also, if you're going to host your own DNS you should look at who's going to provide secondary DNS in case yours goes down. Some hosting providers offer this service.

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To do this, you firstly need to have NameServer records setup on your own DNS server for You would also usually have 2 name server records, your registrar may require this, so you may want to setup as well, this should preferably point to a different IP to the first one. It can point to the same DNS server, although best practice is to have a second backup DNS server for your sendon nameserver, but obviously if this is a hobby then its not neccasery.

Next when you go to your registrar and change your nameservers, you will enter, because the nameserver is on the same domain, you will then be asked to enter the IP of the nameserver.

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