Can a Raspberry Pi Be a DNS Server?


Larry Thompson

Can a Raspberry Pi Be a DNS Server?

Are you looking for a cost-effective and efficient solution to set up your own DNS server? If you have a Raspberry Pi lying around, you’re in luck! In this article, we will explore how you can turn your Raspberry Pi into a powerful DNS server.

What is DNS?

DNS, or Domain Name System, is an essential component of the internet infrastructure. It translates human-readable domain names, such as, into IP addresses that computers can understand. Without DNS, we would need to remember and type in long strings of numbers to access websites.

Why Use a Raspberry Pi as a DNS Server?

Raspberry Pi is a versatile and low-cost single-board computer that can be used for various purposes. Setting up your own DNS server on a Raspberry Pi offers several advantages:

  • Cost-effective: A Raspberry Pi is an affordable alternative to dedicated hardware.
  • Customization: You have full control over the configuration and settings of your DNS server.
  • Privacy: By hosting your own DNS server, you reduce reliance on external servers and potentially enhance privacy.

Setting Up Your Raspberry Pi as a DNS Server

Step 1: Install Raspbian OS

To begin, make sure you have Raspbian OS installed on your Raspberry Pi. Raspbian is the official operating system for the Raspberry Pi and provides a user-friendly interface.

Step 2: Update Your System

$ sudo apt-get update

$ sudo apt-get upgrade

Step 3: Install and Configure DNS Software

There are various DNS software options available, but one popular choice is BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain). To install BIND, run the following command:

$ sudo apt-get install bind9

Once installed, you need to configure BIND. The main configuration file is located at /etc/bind/named.conf.options. Open the file using your preferred text editor and make the necessary changes.

Step 4: Configure DNS Zones

DNS zones define the domains and subdomains for which your DNS server will be authoritative. To configure DNS zones, you need to edit the /etc/bind/named.local file. Add your zone configurations using the following syntax:

zone "" {
    type master;
    file "/etc/bind/";

Step 5: Create Zone Files

Create zone files for each of your configured zones. These files contain the actual DNS records for your domains and subdomains.

$ sudo nano /etc/bind/

Edit the zone file with the necessary records:

$TTL    86400
@       IN      SOA admin. 

                        2022010101 ; Serial
                        86400      ; Refresh
                        7200       ; Retry
                        1209600    ; Expire
                        86400      ; Minimum TTL
@       IN      NS      ns1. @       IN      A
www     IN      A

Step 6: Start the DNS Server

Once everything is set up, start the DNS server by running the following command:

$ sudo service bind9 start


By repurposing your Raspberry Pi as a DNS server, you gain control over your DNS resolution and reduce reliance on external servers. With the flexibility and affordability of a Raspberry Pi, setting up your own DNS server has never been easier.

Remember: Ensure that you properly configure security measures and regularly update your DNS server to protect against vulnerabilities.

So, why not give it a try? Turn your Raspberry Pi into a DNS powerhouse and take control of your network’s domain name resolution!

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