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I register a new domain, mynewdomain.com, at a hosting company.

In the advanced DNS settings there is an A record which maps mynewdomain.com to a ip address.

In my webhost control panel, it shows me the nameservers for the domain: ns1.mywebhost.net & ns2.mywebhost.net

When I type in mynewdomain.com into a browser and hit enter I believe the following happens.

  1. ISP resolver searches "." nameserver
  2. ISP resolver then told to search ".com" nameserver instead.
  3. ISP resolver finds mynewdomain.com, and searches the zone file to get the A record.

So my question is, where does my webhost's nameservers come into play? I believe the flaw in my logic comes from the fact that my zone file (in which the A record is kept) is stored on ns1.mywebhost.net). But if that is the case, how does my ISP resolver know to look here? (because I didn't type this into my address bar)

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If you are trying to understand how DNS works, there is a book that explains it all. I strongly suggest reading it before doing ANYTHING involving DNS on the internet. –  voretaq7 Jul 24 '13 at 16:40
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marked as duplicate by Jenny D, MadHatter, kce, voretaq7 Jul 24 '13 at 16:40

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Amongst other things, it tells the primary who it should send update notifications to when the zonefile is updated (strictly, when the serial number is bumped).

Edit: this has nothing to do with your 1,2,3 sequence above. Recursive resolution doesn't use the NS records; instead it uses the glue records. You can find more about those on Wikipedia, or in this answer .

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Thanks, so how does this relate to my little 1,2,3 sequence above? –  Lars Jul 24 '13 at 14:01
    
Thanks for the edit, but actually I'm using Amazon Route53 which doesn't use glue records. I'm not understanding how anyone other than me and amazon would know that the records for mynewdomain.com are stored on ns1.mywebhost.net –  Lars Jul 24 '13 at 14:18
    
If you stop redacting the domain, it may be easier to answer your query, which seems to be getting more particular, and less like the original question. –  MadHatter Jul 24 '13 at 15:06
    
Thanks for the comment - but I've not actually made any changes to my original question or domain or indeed anything. My website lives at mynewdomain.com as it always has done. I'd like to know how the server knows to look in the list located on ns1.mywebhost.net to find the ip address. –  Lars Jul 24 '13 at 15:11
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No, that's rather my point. Your original question asked about the function of NS records, but it seems that what you really want to know is how your custom DNS provider's setup knows about your particular nameservers. That question might be easier to answer if (a) you'd asked it, and (b) you didn't redact the domain name. –  MadHatter Jul 24 '13 at 15:13
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