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Win 2003 Server DNS intermittently stops forwarding

We have a Win 2003 Server installed as the DNS server on our office network.  It is set to forward "All other domains" queries to external DNS servers (in our case one from our ISP and the alternates from OpenDNS).  Our internet connection comes in through a router, which handles the DHCP routing.

Periodically the server simply stops forwarding DNS queries, which prevents all users on the network from resolving internet addresses outside of our local domain. This occurs sometimes just once a day but often 2-3 times a day.  Stopping & restarting the DNS Service handles the problem immediately...until the next time.

There are no warnings or error messages in any of the event logs.
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worthyking
Asked:
worthyking
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3 Solutions
 
Chris DentPowerShell DeveloperCommented:

Is server is patched and the version of DNS.exe the highest available (5.2.3790.4171 for 2003 Server)?

Chris
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
All windows updates on the server are current. Can we assume then that DNS.exe is most recent?  How do I check for that?
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Chris DentPowerShell DeveloperCommented:

It's unlikely to be out of date if you have all the patches, you can check it under %SystemRoot%\System32\DNS.exe

Just check the base file version there. I've seen this problem with the base version of DNS.

You're certain it stops Forwarding? And that it's not just the ISPs system which stops replying?

Chris
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
DNS.exe is version 5.2.3790.4171

I am sure that it stops forwarding for a couple reasons:

1) I have three alternate dns servers listed as forwarders (one fromm our iSP, two from OpenDNS). The chances of all three being down at the exact same time are slim to none.

2) The problems corrects immediately the moment I stop/restart the DNS Service.
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ryansotoCommented:
Why not try eliminating the forwarding servers just to be sure -
I would start by using just the ISP's box and then test.
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Chris DentPowerShell DeveloperCommented:

I concur, I would start with removing the ISPs, but either way works.

I wondered if you'd had a packet sniffer on the DNS box and seen that yours had stopped sending requests.

Chris
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ChiefITCommented:
Hey Chris and Rayan:

2 forwarders using recursive and public "forwarders". Could this be that the public servers will not allow recursive lookups and therefore causing him grief?
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
I have done the following, will test it out and see if the problem reoccurs:

1. Deleted the public forwarders (OpenDNS)
2. Got updated primary & secondary dns server IPs from our T1 provider and have set those as the forwarders.

Will see if it hangs again, and report back here when it does (or does not?  fingers crossed!)
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ChiefITCommented:
Howdy, Howdy:

Have you noticed any difference?
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
It has been a few days with no problems. I am conservatively optimistic that it is fixed, but want to give it a few more days just to be sure.
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ChiefITCommented:
Still looking good?
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
Okay, the problem seems to have gone away but without any specific corrections made.  First I removed the public (OpenDNS) servers fromm the forwarders and left only our ISP's dns servers.  That worked fine with no problems.  I then added the OpenDNS servers back into the forwarders list to see if it would break again, but it did not. It has been running perfectly for almost two weeks now in the same configuration as we originally had.  I am stumped, but at least it works now.
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worthykingAuthor Commented:
Okay, the problem seems to have gone away but without any specific corrections made. First I removed the public (OpenDNS) servers fromm the forwarders and left only our ISP's dns servers. That worked fine with no problems. I then added the OpenDNS servers back into the forwarders list to see if it would break again, but it did not. It has been running perfectly for almost two weeks now in the same configuration as we originally had. I am stumped, but at least it works now.
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ryansotoCommented:
The problem may resurface at some point - Is there any reason to just leave the ISP DNS there?
Get rid of the opendns...?
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