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I have 4 domain controllers in a Win2008 AD domain. All 4 DCs are in my main site and are running the DNS services. Does the logonserver of a client determine the DNS server it will query first? Or, is the DNS server used for a query determined by the order that is listed in my Advanced TCP/IP settings - DNS setting of my host?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

The algorithm that windows uses to query configured DNS server's is described in this very cool Technet article.

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Got some reading to do. Thanks for the link! – rmnv Mar 7 '14 at 2:11
@rmnv It's a pretty in depth article but well worth skim reading at the very least. – Sam Mar 7 '14 at 8:58

The DNS servers a computer will use will be based on what you have in the network settings. If you use DHCP, it's what your DHCP server sends, if it's static, it's whatever you entered.

DNS servers are configured in a preference order - the first one in the list will be tried first, with the next only being contacted if the first fails and so on.

As you can see in the screenshot, 3 DNS servers have been added (Note that the "General" tab only ever shows 2 - you must click "Advanced" for the others), with being the default / preferred server.

Windows DNS Settings

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I thought that's how it worked but I did not know if I might have been missing something else in the way it determines the first dns server to query. – rmnv Mar 7 '14 at 2:13

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