What Is Required to Set Up a Caching-Only DNS Server?


Heather Bennett

What Is Required to Set Up a Caching-Only DNS Server?

Setting up a caching-only DNS server can greatly improve the efficiency and speed of your network. In this tutorial, we will explore the requirements and steps involved in setting up a caching-only DNS server.


Before diving into the setup process, make sure you have the following:

  • A server or computer running a Linux distribution such as Ubuntu or CentOS.
  • Root access to the server.
  • A stable internet connection.

Step-by-Step Guide

1. Update Your System

Before proceeding with any installation, it is essential to update your system’s package repository and upgrade all installed packages. Open your terminal and run the following commands:

$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt upgrade

2. Install BIND9

BIND9 is the most commonly used domain name system (DNS) software on Linux systems.

It provides both authoritative and caching DNS services. Install BIND9 by running the following command:

$ sudo apt install bind9

3. Configure BIND9 as a Caching-Only Server

To configure BIND9 as a caching-only server, open the named.conf.options file using a text editor:

$ sudo nano /etc/bind/named.options

Add the following lines inside the “options” block:

forwarders {

The above configuration sets Google’s public DNS servers (8.8 and 8.4) as forwarders. They will be used when the caching server does not have the requested DNS record in its cache.

4. Restart BIND9

After making the necessary changes, save and close the file. Restart BIND9 to apply the new configuration:

$ sudo systemctl restart bind9

Testing Your Caching-Only DNS Server

To test if your caching-only DNS server is functioning correctly, you can use the “dig” command-line tool:

$ dig example.com

If everything is set up correctly, you should receive a response with the requested domain’s IP address and other relevant information.


Setting up a caching-only DNS server can significantly improve network performance by reducing latency and bandwidth usage. By following this tutorial, you have learned how to install and configure BIND9 as a caching-only DNS server on your Linux system.

Remember to regularly update your system and monitor your caching server’s performance to ensure optimal functionality.

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