Moving DNS Server...

Posted on 2002-04-10
Last Modified: 2010-04-11
The company I work for is going to switch hosting providers.  The problem is that our DNS server is going to have to switch IP's once we move over to the new location.  Now I can go and change all of the domains that I have registered over to use the new DNS server, but we have many (irresponsible) clients that have their domain names using us for DNS.

Is there any way to do a global change for all domains that have my DNS machine listed as their primary DNS, even if I do not own the domain?

My first thought is "No".  This would be way too insecure, because how would I prove that I have the rights to do this?  Then I began to think.  When you register a domain and point it at a DNS server, it asks you for name and IP.  If I were to move my DNS server and merely change the DNS entry for that machine to point to the new IP, would DNS queries look for the old IP, or use the domain?

Has anyone experienced a similar problem?  I do not think having all of our customers manually edit their configurations at their registrars is an option....
Question by:smisk
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Accepted Solution

svindler earned 200 total points
ID: 6931226
Yes, you can change the A record for your dns server to point to the new ip address and all domains should point to the new address, UNLESS a client created an A record like "" to point to the old ip address. Then obviously it wouldn't work.

Let me add that I would guess that for things to work for any of your "irresponsible" clients, an irresponsible employee of your company would have to have added the domain on your dns server.

Expert Comment

ID: 6931646
In your DNS database when you change the NS records which mean the name server IPs for the domains you have, there will be no problem for the clients which would like to reach the machine in those domains.(also you must make root servers aware of this change)

However for the clients which use your DNS, that is which entered your DNS server's IP as the primary DNS server in their IP settings, you must change all of them manually.

Hope this helps...

Expert Comment

ID: 6937111
I think the point may have been missed.  What you are saying is that you want to contact the registrar and tell them to change the primary address en masse to the new server - correct?

I don't believe this is possible.  Just because you own the box that all these companies are pointing at, doesn't mean you have the authority to move domains to other boxes.  Imagine the havoc that could be caused by an admin with bad intentions...

I believe (but am not sure) that you could convince these "irresponsible clients" to list you as an authorized person to make changes.  If this is possible, you could then make the move free and clear.  Otherwise, they are the ultimate responsible party for their domains and they will need to pay for their irresponsibility if they are not willing to make the changes in time.

However, my guess is that if they were truly irresponsible, you wouldn't be nearly as concerned over doing the action for them and would notify them of their need to change and leave them to their own devices...

Expert Comment

ID: 6943526
well, all teh domains that this DNS server serves are listed in the DNS manager or DNS record file, so you can go through and contact you registrar for all these domains. If a domain is not listed in DNS manager, then you are not serving it and you don't have a problem.

Author Comment

ID: 7014832
There have been plenty of irresponsible people at my company... ;)

Anyway, I changed the A record for my DNS server to point to it's new IP address and everything went smoothly.  Sites registered at Network Solutions reflected the change right away, but still displays the old IP address on the whois even though it uses the new server.

Thanks for the help...

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