DNS stands for Domain Name System, a system that will make it easier for you when you want to visit a website.
Without DNS, you have to write an IP address like 184.108.40.2067 to access a website, complicated isn’t it?
Plus, every website has a different IP address! Well, DNS will translate the IP address into a domain name so you can just write down the domain like Google.com, HostForLIFE.eu, and so on.
Want to know an explanation about DNS, its functions, advantages, how it works, and its types in full? Read this article below!
What is DNS?
DNS (Domain Name System) is a server that connects URLs to IP addresses.
This means that the DNS system will change website URLs to IP addresses so users don’t need to write down IP addresses when they want to visit a site.
For example, when you want to visit Google in a browser, without DNS, you have to type the IP address 220.127.116.117 into the address bar.
But with DNS, you only need to type Google.com then DNS will translate the domain to an IP address understood by the computer.
How DNS Work?
DNS has a systematic way of working. The following is an explanation of how DNS works systematically according to the sequence.
- The user types ‘example.com’ into the browser address bar. The process of querying or requesting website information will run and then be received by the recursive DNS resolver.
- The resolver then queries the DNS root nameservers (.).
- The root server then responds to the resolver with the address of a Top Level Domain (TLD) DNS server (such as .com or .net), which holds information for the domain. For example, if you search for example.com, the request will redirect to the .com TLD.
- The resolver then makes a request to the .com TLD.
- The TLD server then responds with the IP address of the example.com domain name server.
- The recursive resolver then sends queries to the domain’s nameservers.
- The IP address for example.com is then returned to the resolver.
- The DNS resolver then responds to the web browser with the IP address of the requested domain.
- After the process is complete, the browser used can send requests to the website to retrieve website content using the existing IP address.
The function of the DNS is to translate IP addresses into domain names. To clarify your understanding, here are some other DNS functions:
- Identify a computer address in a network
- Provides an IP address for each host
- Request IP address information for a website based on the domain address
- Transcribe hostnames to IP addresses and vice versa
- Look for the appropriate data in the server database to be displayed on the client browser
- Doing data collection of email servers and looking for the right server to send emails
Advantages of DNS
After knowing what DNS is and its functions, here are some of the advantages of DNS that you should know:
- Easier to remember
The main advantage of DNS is that it makes it easier for you to access websites without having to type in the IP address. So, all you have to do is type in the domain name and it will immediately be directed to the website.
Imagine if you had to memorize a random string of IP addresses just to get to one website. Moreover, each website has a different IP address, difficult isn’t it?
- Easier to configure
The advantage of DNS is that it is easier to configure. If there are problems with the IP address used, you can easily replace it with a different IP address with the help of DNS.
You do this by updating DNS matching data and IP addresses. This method will of course be related to how DNS works which is also discussed in this article.
- More secure
When we use the DNS system, all online data transfer activities will take place through a DNS server that is guaranteed security.
This system will prevent hacking attempts by irresponsible persons. So, your website will be safer and avoid unwanted things.
The principle of DNS is to match URL component names with IP address components. This is because every URL and IP address has parts that are related to one another. DNS is grouped into certain sections. The following are the parts of DNS whose functions are interrelated:
The recursive DNS resolver is the first part to look up IP address information through DNS. If the information is not found in the server cache, the system will search the ISP cache.
The root server is a database that answers questions about domain names and IP addresses. Root itself does not have all the information about the hostname and IP address. This server can forward requests for information to other parties who have that information.
Until now, there are 13 root servers in the world. Root servers are ordered alphabetically and are maintained by organizations such as the Internet System Consortium, Verisign, the U.S Army Research Lab, and ICANN.
From the root server, the system will use the Top Level Domain server to find the type of information you are looking for. Each TLD like .com, .net, .au, .org, .edu has a specific server.
So, for example, if the TLD has a .uk domain extension, then the server used is the United Kingdom server. By reading this information, the system will forward the information search to the server that has the data being sought.
Authoritative name server
Authoritative name server is a type of server that has complete information about the destination site. If all the requested information is correct, the browser will display the website/page requested by the user.
Generally, the search process will be repeated to ensure the requested information is kept up-to-date. However, some information is also stored in cache form on the device so that the query process runs faster.
Types of DNS Records
DNS Records are instructions created and stored on a DNS server called a Zone File. These records provide important details relating to domains and host names.
This will help the DNS server direct queries to where they need to go. Here are some types of DNS Records that are commonly found:
A (Address) records
Stores information about the hostname. Usually used to map Fully Qualified Domain Names (FQDN) to IPv4 addresses and acts as a translator by converting domain names to IP addresses.
AAAA (Quad A)
Stores hostname information and its relationship to IPv6 addresses.
Canonical names or aliases that refer to other domains or subdomains, but not to IP addresses. CNAME is often used to redirect domains / subdomains to an IP address.
This record type is useful for specifying a domain root to a hostname or FQDN.
SOA (Start of Authority)
Appears at the beginning of the DNS zone document and stores information about the domain being connected to the server. SOA also refers to Authoritative Name Server.
NS (Name Server)
A name server record that maps a domain name to a list of DNS servers for that domain.
MX (Mail Exchange)
Records that identify servers for handling mail. Used to record the SMTP server that is used to exchange emails in a domain.
DNS records that provide text information to sources outside the domain, which can be used for email validation, websites, verifying domains in search consoles, and so on.
Records that work for DNS data specifications, such as priority, name, weight, port, points, TTL. SRV allows services such as instant messaging, or VoIP to be routed to separate host and port locations.
PTR is also called RDNS or reverse DNS. In contrast to an A record, PTR points IP to a domain or hostname.
You Know About DNS NOW!
How, do you understand better what DNS is? In short, DNS is a server whose job is to change website URLs to IP addresses.
In essence, DNS helps you access the internet without having to type an IP address in numbers when you want to visit a website.
So, you only need to write the domain name, and DNS will translate it to the destination IP address.
The function of DNS is to identify computer addresses in a network, provide IP addresses for each host, request IP address information for a website based on domain addresses, and so on.
While the advantages of DNS are easy to remember, easy to configure, and more secure.
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