Basic BIND Installation

The most popular DNS server in Linux is the Berkeley Internet Name Domain (BIND), which is usually installed in a package called bind or bind9 (the current version is 9.2.2). The actual server program within the package is called named.

Although BIND is the most popular DNS server, it's not the only one that's available. Others include djbdns (, dnscache (, and pdnsd (; see also for some updates). The first of these programs can do much of what BIND can do, but the remaining two are intended primarily as caching DNS servers only. They may be useful if you just want to provide a local DNS cache, but they can't function as authoritative DNS servers for your domain. (The pdnsd server provides some very limited local domain-handling features, but not enough to serve a real domain.)

Assuming you want to run BIND, you can install the server much as you would any other. BIND normally runs from a SysV or local startup script; it maintains a cache of recent requests in memory, so it works best when it can run continuously. Running the server from a super server would cause it to lose that cache, thereby degrading performance.

The main BIND configuration file is/etc/named.conf. A basic named.conf file consists of an options section, in which global options are defined, and a series of zone sections, in which specific DNS zones are defined. Each zone corresponds to one domain or subdomain for which the server is authoritative—that is, for which the server is the final authority. Both the options section and the zone sections span multiple lines, using curly braces ({}) to mark the beginning and end of each section.

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