Assigning multiple hosts to a single name.

Posted on 2008-06-09
Last Modified: 2013-12-14
I was looking for a way to assign multiple hosts to a single alias in DNS management or other means.  What I'd like to have is an alias such as 'test' where users on the intranet can go to and it will connect them to either,, or depending on whichever is available (and if possible whichever has the least number of users already connected to it).
I tried assigning aliases in the dns management snap-in but it will only allow the alias to be assigned once, and not multiple times like I'd want.
Question by:blackjack2003
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Expert Comment

ID: 21746804
do you want load balancing ?
for what application ?
in linux you could do it using iptables and DNAT/SNAT

Accepted Solution

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ID: 21746834
You need to look towards Network Load Balancing (NLB). in this senario you would buils an NLB cluster so all 3 servers would effectively have the same Virtual IP Address and would do most of what you require.

To achieve the same in DNS you would need to implement "round Robin DNS" but that would simply move each query onto the next host. i.e. user 1 = server 1, user 2 = server2, user 3 = server 3 then user 4 = server 1 and so on. This would not provide any "real" load balancing and sertainly wouldn't provide any availability checking.

Author Comment

ID: 21746841
I don't want load balancing, just to have a user be able to connect to one of multiple machines for remote desktop and a citrix server.  Right now there's 4 machines that if they browse to it will connect to the citrix server, or they remote desktop into pcA they can run the application they want.  I'd like to make it a single name to go to whichever of the 4 is available.
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Expert Comment

ID: 21746854
again NLB is your friend. If one node is unavailable it's removed from the cluster and so no more requests will be passed to it.

Author Comment

ID: 21746860
Where could I find information on how to set such a thing up then?  Does it require special hardware / connections?

Expert Comment

ID: 21746887
doesn't really require any special hardware beyond your average server. Windows 2003 Standard will support it.

Here's a fairly detailed intro into NLB.

Author Comment

ID: 21746902
Thanks alot.

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