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RESOLV.CONF(5)             Linux Programmer's Manual            RESOLV.CONF(5)

       resolv.conf - resolver configuration file


       The  resolver is a set of routines in the C library that provide access
       to the Internet Domain Name System (DNS).  The  resolver  configuration
       file  contains  information  that  is read by the resolver routines the
       first time they are invoked by a process.  The file is designed  to  be
       human readable and contains a list of keywords with values that provide
       various types of resolver information.

       If this file doesn't exist the only name server to be queried  will  be
       on  the  local machine; the domain name is determined from the hostname
       and the domain search path is constructed from the domain name.

       The different configuration options are:

       nameserver Name server IP address
              Internet address (in dot notation) of a  name  server  that  the
              resolver   should   query.    Up  to  MAXNS  (currently  3,  see
              <resolv.h>) name servers may be listed,  one  per  keyword.   If
              there are multiple servers, the resolver library queries them in
              the order listed.  If no nameserver  entries  are  present,  the
              default  is  to  use the name server on the local machine.  (The
              algorithm used is to try a name server, and if the  query  times
              out, try the next, until out of name servers, then repeat trying
              all the name servers until  a  maximum  number  of  retries  are

       domain Local domain name.
              Most  queries  for  names within this domain can use short names
              relative to the local domain.  If no domain  entry  is  present,
              the  domain  is  determined  from the local hostname returned by
              gethostname(2); the domain part is taken to be everything  after
              the  first  '.'.   Finally,  if  the hostname does not contain a
              domain part, the root domain is assumed.

       search Search list for host-name lookup.
              The search list is normally determined  from  the  local  domain
              name;  by default, it contains only the local domain name.  This
              may be changed by listing the desired domain search path follow-
              ing the search keyword with spaces or tabs separating the names.
              Resolver queries having fewer than ndots dots (default is 1)  in
              them  will  be attempted using each component of the search path
              in turn until a match is found.  For environments with  multiple
              subdomains  please  read  options ndots:n below to avoid man-in-
              the-middle attacks and unnecessary  traffic  for  the  root-dns-
              servers.  Note that this process may be slow and will generate a
              lot of network traffic if the servers for the listed domains are
              not local, and that queries will time out if no server is avail-
              able for one of the domains.

              The search list is currently limited to six domains with a total
              of 256 characters.

              Sortlist  allows  addresses  returned  by gethostbyname(3) to be
              sorted.  A sortlist is specified by IP  address  netmask  pairs.
              The  netmask  is optional and defaults to the natural netmask of
              the net.  The IP address and optional network  pairs  are  sepa-
              rated by slashes.  Up to 10 pairs may be specified.  E.g.,

              Options  allows  certain internal resolver variables to be modi-
              fied.  The syntax is

                     options option ...

              where option is one of the following:

              debug  sets RES_DEBUG in _res.options.

                     sets a threshold for the number of dots which must appear
                     in  a name given to res_query(3) (see resolver(3)) before
                     an initial absolute query will be made.  The default  for
                     n is 1, meaning that if there are any dots in a name, the
                     name will be tried first as an absolute name  before  any
                     search list elements are appended to it.

                     sets  the  amount  of  time  the resolver will wait for a
                     response from a remote name server  before  retrying  the
                     query  via a different name server.  Measured in seconds,
                     the default is RES_TIMEOUT (currently 5, see <resolv.h>).

                     sets the number of times the resolver will send  a  query
                     to  its  name  servers  before giving up and returning an
                     error  to  the  calling  application.   The  default   is
                     RES_DFLRETRY (currently 2, see <resolv.h>).

              rotate sets RES_ROTATE in _res.options, which causes round robin
                     selection of nameservers from among those  listed.   This
                     has  the  effect  of  spreading  the query load among all
                     listed servers, rather than having all  clients  try  the
                     first listed server first every time.

                     sets  RES_NOCHECKNAME in _res.options, which disables the
                     modern BIND checking of incoming hostnames and mail names
                     for invalid characters such as underscore (_), non-ASCII,
                     or control characters.

              inet6  sets RES_USE_INET6 in _res.options.  This has the  effect
                     of trying a AAAA query before an A query inside the geth-
                     ostbyname(3) function, and of mapping IPv4  responses  in
                     IPv6  "tunneled form" if no AAAA records are found but an
                     A record set exists.

                     Some programs behave strangely when this option is turned

       The  domain  and  search keywords are mutually exclusive.  If more than
       one instance of these keywords is present, the last instance wins.

       The search keyword of a system's resolv.conf file can be overridden  on
       a  per-process basis by setting the environment variable LOCALDOMAIN to
       a space-separated list of search domains.

       The options keyword of a system's resolv.conf file can be amended on  a
       per-process  basis by setting the environment variable RES_OPTIONS to a
       space-separated list of  resolver  options  as  explained  above  under

       The  keyword  and  value  must appear on a single line, and the keyword
       (e.g., nameserver) must start the line.  The value follows the keyword,
       separated by white space.

       /etc/resolv.conf, <resolv.h>

       gethostbyname(3), resolver(3), hostname(7), named(8)
       Name Server Operations Guide for BIND

       This  page  is  part of release 3.05 of the Linux man-pages project.  A
       description of the project, and information about reporting  bugs,  can
       be found at http://www.kernel.org/doc/man-pages/.

4th Berkeley Distribution         2004-10-31                    RESOLV.CONF(5)