I have deployed an Adguard Home docker container which i want to use as my DNS server/proxy. DNS resolution is working fine when i'm making an nslookup from a machine (as well as the docker host) on my local network. (resolving local and external dns names successfully)

However when making an nslookup from within a container the following message is returned:

;; connection timed out; no servers could be reached

If i take a look at the docker daemon log (in debug mode) i see this message

Aug 13 22:56:27 host dockerd[641]: time="2020-08-13T22:56:27.646666208+02:00" level=debug msg="Name To resolve: host.local."
Aug 13 22:56:27 host dockerd[641]: time="2020-08-13T22:56:27.647142480+02:00" level=debug msg="[resolver] query host.local. (A) from, forwarding to udp:"
Aug 13 22:56:27 host dockerd[641]: time="2020-08-13T22:56:27.756187183+02:00" level=debug msg="[resolver] read from DNS server failed, read udp> i/o timeout"

In the log of adguard home there are no noticeable problems. All requests (also the ones matching the timestamps of the request from within the containers) are answered and the correct address is returned.

To make the nslookup i used a busybox container (I can ping the adguard container):

docker run --network=adguardhome_default busybox nslookup -debug -type=A host.local

I'm running docker on raspian 10. Docker version is 19.03.12. Docker-compose version is 1.21.0.

There are a few things i tried so far which include:

  • setting DNS in /etc/docker/daemon.json
  • setting DNS with --DNS option
  • setting DNS in compose file
  • editing containers resolv.conf
  • resetting the docker bridge

It seems as if the embedded docker DNS doesn't understand the response from the adguard service or is otherwise not behaving as i'd expect it to. I'm thankful for any help and hope i provided enough detail.

I tried to use the paramter --dns-opt=use-vc to force dns over tcp like suggested here. The option used is reflected in the resolv.conf of the container but doesn't seem to have any effect/isn't honored. Request are still made using UDP.

resolv.conf of host:

# Generated by resolvconf
domain fritz.box

resolv.conf of container:

options ndots:0

docker-compose file for adguard:

version: '3.2'
    image: adguard/adguardhome:latest
    container_name: adguardhome
    restart: unless-stopped
      - 53:53/tcp
      - 53:53/udp
        #- 67:67/udp
        #- 68:68/tcp
        #- 68:68/udp
      - 853:853/tcp
      - 3000:3000/tcp
      - type: volume
        source: data
        target: /opt/adguardhome/work
      - type: volume
        source: config
        target: /opt/adguardhome/conf


adguard DNS servers:
  • I have the same problem, but with dnsmasq instead of adguard
    – mistiru
    Commented Sep 11, 2020 at 11:48

1 Answer 1


I have the exact same issue. A dockerized adguard which works perfectly for everything except for other docker hosted on the same Raspberry.

From the other docker i can ping the adguard, i can access the port 53. From the adguard in debug i see the request coming in, i see no error, but no response going back to the docker.

Weirdly, in the log of the Adguard, i see that it has correctly dealed with my DNS request but the client IP adress is not from the orignal docker, but it is the IP of the adguard itself.

Finally if it tried an nslookup with the google DNS it works perfectly.

As i understand, it look like that the adguard server is answering the DNS request on its own ip and not on the orignal source IP.

Edit : I have been able to solve my issue by using macvlan networks on all my docker.

  • Thank you for you answer! I managed to solve this issue in a different way. I joined the containers that had problems with DNS resolution to the docker network of the adguard container and specified the IP-adress of the adguard container as the DNS server for these containers. All of that using docker-compose. It works fine right now but your solutions looks good as well. Maybe someone with more experience regarding docker networking could give some background which would be the preferred solution? Commented Sep 13, 2020 at 12:25
  • When debugging the problem with a friend we came to the conclusion that it probably had to do something with dockers iptables rules blocking container to container communication over the host or something alike. Commented Sep 13, 2020 at 12:26
  • 1
    @PurifyPioneer thanks man, you're a life saver! The trick using an explicitly defined network and static ip's for the containers worked for me. I can now set the ip of the adguard container as the dns for the other containers and it works. macvlan seems overkill for what I'm trying to solve with it. Commented Aug 4, 2021 at 9:55

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