I have a need to make my own DNS system on an isolated network.  Years ago,
I administered DNS for a couple of different companies, but that was quite a
while ago and since I've turned to programming I haven't done much in the
way of network administration.  I recall from using BIND 4, when I was
reading up on it, that it is most certainly possible to configure an entire
DNS system on a totally isolated network.

Would I need zone files for the root, ".", zone and any other zones I
configure; e.g. "isolation."?  This would seem to be the way to go about it,
but I'm having some difficulty visualizing it in my head.  I just did some
searches online for the O'Reilly book "DNS & BIND".  I recall using this
book in the past and it was quite helpful (and unfortunately for me,
belonged to my former employers).  Would this book be a good reference for
this task as well, or are there better books that I might want to look into
getting for this?  Or, are there good on-line resources that could help me
muddle through?

Any help is greatly appreciated.


Hello Andy,

First, you need to know that BIND has jumped from version 4 directly
to version 8 and is now at version 9. There is a whole world of
difference between the version 4 that you've worked with in the past
and the latest version 9 (such as Views, DNSSEC, IXFR, etc).

Now, the book you mentioned above is still THE reference on the topic.
O'Reilly recently published the 5th edition of "DNS & BIND" which
covers everything BIND 9 has to offer. Plus an extended chapter on the
DNS architecture itself. It's a great book, you should get yourself a
copy if you're interested by DNS.

Third, while "DNS & BIND" is a fine book, you'll have more direct help
from another O'Reilly book called "DNS & BIND Cookbook" from Cricket
Liu. It presents some common DNS related tasks in the form of easy to
follow "recipes". It sure is a great help when it actually is time to
build and configure your DNS servers.

Moreover, FreeBSD is an excellent platform for building DNS servers.
I've built DNS servers out of Solaris, AIX, RedHat and FreeBSD
machines and BSD is by far the easiest and more flexible to setup and

<shameless plug>
Finally, if for various reasons you don't have the time or expertise
to setup your own DNS machine. Then have a look at the appliances from
the author of "DNS & BIND" Cricket Liu's company called Infoblox at
</shameless plug>


David Robillard
UNIX systems administrator & Oracle DBA
CISSP, RHCE & Sun Certified Security Administrator
Montreal: +1 514 966 0122
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