What is Recursive DNS?

What is Recursive DNS?


Recursive DNS resolution takes place when a domain name server (DNS) queries another DNS to resolve an IP address. The process of querying can be repeated iteratively until the desired IP address is returned. In this way, the recursion part of the term “recursive” refers to a series of steps that are performed in order until a final result is achieved. A typical example would be where one organization’s Domain Name System (DNS) might query another organization for their IP addresses and then pass them on to yet another group.

Recursive DNS resolution allows the final result to be achieved at any stage in the process. This can be useful if a client device (such as a smartphone, tablet, or computer) has more than one possible source for an IP address and therefore needs to query several of them until it reaches a working DNS.

What is Recursive DNS?

Recursive DNS is a system that allows for remote access to domain names on the Internet. The recursive name servers are designed to enable clients to find servers without specifying an IP address of the server. This enables users to work with names instead of addresses, which makes it easier to remember.

Requests are forwarded from one computer to another in order to locate the appropriate servers, which must be configured for this operation. “Root hints” are stored in cache or memory on each server so that they are available for current and future use. These root hints contain information about servers that are not automatically known by each client system but can be obtained by sending a request message to a root server.

Why do I need it?

Recursive DNS is a system of storing and retrieving the domain name system records for a particular domain, consisting of an association between names and Internet Protocol addresses. Recursive DNS servers are the servers that allow the client to intercept domain name queries from Internet network protocols in order to translate them into Internet address queries.

Recursive DNS servers are the servers that allow the client to intercept domain name queries from Internet network protocols in order to translate them into Internet address queries.

Domain names are organized hierarchically, with each level of naming indirection indicating one farther away from the root or top-level domain. At the second level are country code top-level domains

How does it work?

Recursive name servers are not network devices. Recursive DNS is a type of name server application that works differently than standard DNS servers. The domain owner maintains the database for the recursive name server. It is not operated by the ISP.

The recursive name server does not need to be configured by the end-user. The ISP or network administrator configures the servers to contain the local domains and point to the appropriate recursive name servers for any remote domain requests.

Recursive DNS is considered “stub-resolver” architecture since it doesn’t require any changes in application-level configuration, the role of a recursive DNS server is to forward a request for a domain name to another server. While doing so, it resolves incomplete or inaccurate partial queries through iterative requests from authoritative servers.

What are the benefits of using recursive DNS?

There are many benefits of using recursive DNS. The first is that it will improve your web browsing experience by providing support for workarounds. It also provides the server with the ability to serve non-FQDN resource records for legacy clients that naive recursive resolvers cannot resolve. The last benefit of using recursive DNS is that it provides the ability to delegate authority to a domain name. This is the ultimate goal of using recursive DNS.

What are the types of recursive DNS?

There are three main types of recursive DNS. These include iterative, authoritative-only, and full recursion.

Iterative will provide non-authoritative results based on cached information if it cannot answer the question.

Authoritative only will not continue to check for additional answers after receiving an answer that matches the queried domain name.

Full recursion will continue to go through each step until it finds an answer or reaches a dead end.

How to set up recursive DNS on your computer or router?

To set up recursive DNS on a router, log in to the router’s configuration utility and go to “Forwarding Setup”. Then find the list of host addresses and add all of them with a domain suffix of “IN,” including the address that you want to be forwarded. Doing this for each router will allow all of your devices to be able to use recursive DNS.

It is possible to configure Recursive DNS on your computer, but if you are using a fairly popular operating system, it’s likely your built-in configuration tools will do the trick. For instance, we can open up Network Preferences on macOS and go to “DNS” and choose “+” and provide the fully qualified domain name of the name server we want to use.


Recursive DNS is a type of Domain Name System that allows you to bypass the need for third-party name servers. This can be helpful if your ISP or local network provider has poor service and results in slow load times and other issues with online content. If this sounds like your situation, then recursive DNS may help improve performance by providing an alternate path to the domain server handling requests for those sites. Recursive DNS works by your machine querying a special software program that functions as a resolver. This program traverses from one domain server to another until it finds the right address. It will then essentially tell you where the site is actually located and what its numerical IP address is so you can connect without any further issues.

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