Browse Definitions :
Definition

recursive DNS server

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

A recursive DNS server is a domain name system server that takes website name or URL (uniform resource locator) requests from users and checks the records attained from authoritative DNS servers for the associated IP address.

Recursive DNS servers are required to support the authoritative DNS servers, which  would not otherwise be able to handle the workload created by the huge number of user requests. Recursive DNS servers further distribute this load to make website name requests supportable.

When a user types in  www.whatis.techtarget.com, for example, this address itself does not contain the direction to find the site on the internet. It is only through DNS servers that the IP address is located and used to reach the site (unless the request has been made before from that computer and the response IP address has been cached locally).

Recursive servers are the first ones contacted as the result of a request. Should the contacted server have a cached response for the IP address from an authoritative server with a valid time to live (TTL), it is delivered. If the recursive server doesn’t have the IP address, then it begins its check through the hierarchy of authoritative DNS servers. Authoritative DNS servers in turn have their records supplied by the internet registrars where website owners set up their site names.

DNS servers are a weak point in the internet, as was demonstrated in late 2016 when a wide-scale botnet attack took down access to many major sites.

This was last updated in November 2016

Continue Reading About recursive DNS server

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

SearchSecurity

  • computer worm

    A computer worm is a type of malicious software program whose primary function is to infect other computers while remaining ...

  • Single Sign-On (SSO)

    Single sign-on (SSO) is a session and user authentication service that permits a user to use one set of login credentials (e.g., ...

  • Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)

    Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) is a certification issued by ISACA to people in charge of ensuring that an ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • disaster recovery team

    A disaster recovery team is a group of individuals focused on planning, implementing, maintaining, auditing and testing an ...

  • cloud insurance

    Cloud insurance is any type of financial or data protection obtained by a cloud service provider. 

SearchStorage

  • VRAM (video RAM)

    VRAM (video RAM) is a reference to any type of random access memory (RAM) used to store image data for a computer display.

  • Kilo, mega, giga, tera, peta, exa, zetta and all that

    Kilo, mega, giga, tera, peta, exa, zetta are among the list of prefixes used to denote the quantity of something, such as a byte ...

  • flash memory

    Flash memory, also known as flash storage, is a type of nonvolatile memory that erases data in units called blocks.

Close