Domain Name Services (DNS)

WOU operates a primary DNS, along with several secondary DNS servers.  The primary server runs on a Sun Microsystems server running Solaris 10.  The secondary servers run on Cisco blade servers running RedHat Linux on top of VMware, a virtualization engine.  The servers are configured and maintained by Dave Diemer, unix systems administrator.

DNS servers allow you to access a destination on the internet using words, rather than numbers.  As an example, you can use http://www.wou.edu instead of http://140.211.127.171.  There is a tool called nslookup that you can use to determine the ip address associated with a domain name.  Another tool, dig, returns additional information, including which DNS servers can authoritatively respond with the ip address associated with the domain name.

There is a good document on the history and usage of Domain Name Servers here.

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Lead Unix Systems Administrator