StartUpAm-LOGO
Search
Close this search box.
Article Disclosure

StartUpAm is supported by readers like yourself. We may earn an affiliate commission when you purchase through our links, which enables us to offer our research for free.

About StartUpAm
M.Sebastian - startupam.com

AM. Sebastian

Founder

Hey, I'm Sebastian. I'm here to provide you with the top resources on how to create a website, compare the best software reviews, and grow with digital marketing guides that will help you to start, run and grow your business online.

Learn more about my story here.

Getting Started

It’s important to get your website right the first time. It’ll set you up for success and make life just a little easier while building your business online. Here’s how I build websites:

Compare Reviews

I’ve been using a variety of tools for some time now. Some of them have helped me generate more revenue than ever before. Others cost me a lot in lost revenue. Learn from my challenging experience on which tools can be trusted:

Table of Contents
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    What Is a Name Server? a Deep Dive into DNS

    What Is a Name Server?

    When you type a website address into your web browser, have you ever stopped to wonder how your computer knows where to find that website? The answer lies in a crucial component of the internet’s infrastructure known as a name server.

    In this article, we’ll explore what a name server is, how it works, and why it’s so important to the functioning of the internet.

    Compate the Best Domain Registrars

    What is a name server?

    A name server, also known as a DNS server, is a specialized computer that helps to translate human-friendly website names into computer-readable IP addresses.

    Every website on the internet has a unique IP address, which is a string of numbers that identifies the computer that hosts the website.

    However, IP addresses are difficult for humans to remember and use. That’s where name servers come in.

    When you type a website address into your browser, your computer sends a request to a name server, asking it to look up the IP address associated with that website.

    The name server then returns the IP address to your computer, allowing your browser to connect to the website.

    Compate the Best Types of Web Hosting

    Role of name servers in the Domain Name System (DNS)

    Name servers play a critical role in the Domain Name System (DNS), which is a hierarchical system for organizing website names and IP addresses.

    The DNS is like a massive phone book for the internet, containing a database of all the registered domain names and their corresponding IP addresses.

    When you type a website address into your browser, your computer first checks its own cache to see if it already has the IP address for that website.

    If it doesn’t, it sends a request to a recursive name server, which is responsible for finding the authoritative name server for the domain in question.

    Authoritative name servers are the final authority on which IP address is associated with a particular domain name. They maintain a database of all the IP addresses associated with the domain names that they are authoritative for.

    When the recursive name server finds the authoritative name server for the domain in question, it sends a request for the IP address of the website.

    The authoritative name server then returns the IP address to the recursive name server, which in turn returns it to your computer.

    Compare the Best Web Hosting Services

    DNS Records vs. Name Servers: What’s the Difference?

    When it comes to the Domain Name System (DNS), two key components that are often confused are DNS records and name servers. While both are essential to the functioning of the internet, they serve different purposes.

    DNS records are like individual entries in the DNS phone book. They contain information about a specific aspect of a domain name, such as its IP address or mail server settings. DNS records are stored on name servers, which are responsible for looking up and returning the correct records when a DNS query is made.

    Name servers, on the other hand, are like the phone book itself. They contain a directory of all the DNS records for a particular domain name. When a user makes a request to access a website or send an email, their computer sends a query to a name server, which responds with the appropriate DNS records.

    In short, DNS records contain specific information about a domain name, while name servers contain the directory of all the records for that domain. Understanding the difference between these two components is important for anyone who wants to manage their own DNS settings or troubleshoot DNS issues.

    Learn How to create a website in 19 minutes

    Types of name servers

    There are several different types of name servers, each of which has a specific role to play in the DNS:

    1. Authoritative name servers: These are the final authority on which IP address is associated with a particular domain name. When a recursive name server sends a request to an authoritative name server, the authoritative name server either returns the IP address or indicates that the domain name does not exist.

    2. Recursive name servers: These are responsible for finding the authoritative name server for a given domain name. When a recursive name server receives a request for a domain name that it is not authoritative for, it sends a request to the next level of name servers in the DNS hierarchy until it finds the authoritative name server.

    3. Caching name servers: These are used to speed up the DNS lookup process by storing the results of previous DNS lookups in memory. When a caching name server receives a request for a domain name, it first checks its cache to see if it already has the IP address. If it does, it returns the IP address immediately. If it doesn’t, it sends a request to a recursive name server to look up the IP address.

    Compare the Best WordPress Hosting Services

    How do name servers work?

    The process of looking up an IP address from a domain name involves several steps:

    1. Your computer sends a request to a recursive name server, asking it to look up the IP address for the domain name in question.

    2. If the recursive name server doesn’t already have the IP address in its cache, it sends a request to the next level of name servers in the DNS hierarchy.

    3. This process continues until the request reaches an authoritative name server, which returns the IP address to the recursive name server.

    4. The recursive name server then caches the IP address and returns it to your computer, which uses it to connect to the website.

    This process typically takes only a few milliseconds, but it can involve many different name servers and network connections. It’s thanks to the incredible efficiency of this system that we can access millions of websites around the world with just a few clicks.

    How to set up Name Servers

    If you’re setting up a website or managing a network, you’ll need to set up your own name servers to ensure that your domain name can be properly resolved by other computers on the internet. While the process of setting up name servers can seem daunting, it’s actually fairly straightforward.

    First, you’ll need to choose a domain name and register it with a domain registrar. Next, you’ll need to set up at least two name servers for your domain. It’s best to use two different physical servers in different locations to ensure redundancy in case one server goes down.

    Once you’ve set up your name servers, you’ll need to configure your domain to use them. This typically involves logging into your domain registrar’s control panel and entering the names and IP addresses of your name servers.

    It’s important to ensure that your name servers are properly configured and secured, as they play a critical role in the functioning of your website or network.

    Following best practices for name server security, such as using strong passwords and keeping software up to date, can help ensure that your name servers remain secure and reliable.

    Common name server software

    There are several different software programs used to run name servers, but some of the most popular include BIND, Microsoft DNS, and NSD.

    BIND, or Berkeley Internet Name Domain, is the most widely used name server software in the world. It’s open source software that can run on a variety of operating systems, including Linux, Windows, and macOS.

    Microsoft DNS is a name server software that’s included with the Windows Server operating system. It’s designed to integrate seamlessly with other Microsoft products and can be managed using the Windows Server Manager.

    NSD, or Name Server Daemon, is a lightweight name server software that’s designed to be fast and efficient. It’s often used in conjunction with other software programs, such as BIND, to provide additional name serving capacity.

    Each of these software programs has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose the right one for your needs.

    Security considerations

    Like any other computer system, name servers are vulnerable to a variety of security threats. Some of the most common threats include:

    1. DNS cache poisoning: This occurs when an attacker injects false information into a name server’s cache, causing it to return incorrect IP addresses.

    2. Denial of service attacks: These attacks overwhelm a name server with traffic, preventing it from responding to legitimate requests.

    3. Unauthorized zone transfers: This occurs when an attacker gains access to a name server’s configuration files, allowing them to transfer control of a domain to another server.

    To protect against these threats, it’s important to follow best practices for name server security. This includes using strong passwords, keeping software up to date, and restricting access to name server configuration files.

    Why you should know your site’s name servers

    As a website owner, it’s important to understand how your website’s domain name and name servers work. Knowing your site’s name servers can help you troubleshoot DNS issues, ensure that your domain name is properly configured, and even improve the security and reliability of your website.

    One of the main reasons why you should know your site’s name servers is that it can help you troubleshoot DNS issues.

    If you’re experiencing problems with your website or email, knowing your site’s name servers can help you determine if the issue is with your DNS settings. You can also use tools like online DNS lookup tools to verify that your name servers are properly configured.

    In addition, knowing your site’s name servers can help you improve the security and reliability of your website.

    By following best practices for name server security, such as using strong passwords and keeping software up to date, you can help prevent unauthorized access and ensure that your name servers remain secure and reliable.

    Overall, understanding your site’s name servers is an essential part of managing your website’s DNS settings. By taking the time to learn about name servers and their role in the functioning of the internet, you can ensure that your website remains accessible and secure for your visitors.

    Conclusion

    Name servers are a critical component of the internet’s infrastructure, allowing us to access millions of websites around the world with ease. By translating human-readable website names into computer-readable IP addresses, name servers play a crucial role in the functioning of the internet.

    Understanding how name servers work and how to secure them is essential for anyone who wants to maintain a stable and secure online presence. Whether you’re a website owner, a network administrator, or simply a curious internet user, taking the time to learn about name servers is well worth the effort.

    Read more: How to Start a Blog

    FAQs about Name Servers:

    A name server is a specialized computer that helps to translate human-friendly website names into computer-readable IP addresses. Every website on the internet has a unique IP address, which is a string of numbers that identifies the computer that hosts the website. Name servers play a crucial role in the functioning of the internet by facilitating the translation of website names into IP addresses.

    To set up your own name servers, you'll need to choose a domain name and register it with a domain registrar. Next, you'll need to set up at least two name servers for your domain. Once you've set up your name servers, you'll need to configure your domain to use them. This typically involves logging into your domain registrar's control panel and entering the names and IP addresses of your name servers.

    There are three main types of name servers: authoritative name servers, recursive name servers, and caching name servers. Authoritative name servers are the final authority on which IP address is associated with a particular domain name. Recursive name servers are responsible for finding the authoritative name server for a given domain name. Caching name servers are used to speed up the DNS lookup process by storing the results of previous DNS lookups in memory.

    To ensure that your name servers are secure, it's important to follow best practices for name server security. This includes using strong passwords, keeping software up to date, and restricting access to name server configuration files. Regularly monitoring your name server logs can also help you identify and address any security issues.

    Knowing your site's name servers is important for troubleshooting DNS issues, ensuring that your domain name is properly configured, and improving the security and reliability of your website. By understanding how your website's domain name and name servers work, you can ensure that your website remains accessible and secure for your visitors.

    M. Sebastian
    M. Sebastian
    I am the founder of StartUpAm. I really enjoy coming up with new ideas and business software reviews for in-depth guides on different tools and SaaS applications that help other website owners learn how to grow their business online and to ensure a healthy growth for StartUpAm! - Join startupam.com | Business Software and SaaS Reviews | Scale your Business Online.

    Leave a Comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *