What is DNS?
DNS, the Domain Name Service, is a system for relating names to IP addresses. It is essentially a hierarchical, distributed database that spans thousands of computers across the globe. At the top of the hierarchy are the "root" name servers. All these servers know is the names and IP addresses of the name servers that serve each top-level domain (".com", ".edu", ".us", etc.). The name servers for each top-level domain know the IP addresses and name of name servers for the TLD's sub-domains. For instance, a name server for ".edu" can give you a list of the name servers for "mit.edu". The name servers for ".mit.edu" can tell you the IP addresses of servers within its domain, such as "www.mit.edu". It is also possible for it to create subdomains and assign these to still other name servers.
What is the difference between a primary and secondary DNS server?
From the point of view of the outside world there is no difference at all. The servers themselves have to know which is which, though. There is always only one primary DNS server for a domain. The secondaries are configured with the IP address of the primary server and they download all their information about the domain from it. Secondaries periodically check the primary for DNS changes and download them automatically when necessary.
Will MOREnet be the DNS server for my domain?
This is a service we provide to our members. We will act as either a primary server or a secondary. Many of our larger members want to run their own primary name server and that is fine with us. It gives them more control over their DNS entries and saves us some work. We will act as secondary if they request it. Many smaller sites lack people with the expertise to run a DNS server. We are happy to do this for them.
What DNS server should I configure my workstations to use?
If your site connects to MOREnet's Columbia hub then use these DNS servers:
If your site connects to the Jefferson City hub use these servers:
If your site connects to the Kansas City hub use these servers:
If your site connects to the Springfield hub use these servers:
If your site connects to the St. Louis hub use these servers:
What is the .US domain?
Each country has its own TLD (top-level domain). Many countries use theirs heavily, but many US citizens still prefer to use the generic top-level domains. The hierarchy of the .US domain is geographic. There is a subdomain for each state, such as "mo.us" or "ks.us". Beneath these are locality names such as "kansas-city.mo.us" or "springfield.mo.us". Anyone may register subdomains of locality domains. There also exist functional subdomains such as "k12.mo.us" for K12 schools, "cc.mo.us" for community colleges, "lib.mo.us" for libraries, "mus.mo.us" for museums, etc. The US domain registrar has until recently only had a few employees, so each of the locality and functional subdomains are run by volunteers. These volunteers are required to provide either free or low-cost registrations to those who request them.
What .US domains does MOREnet act as registrar for?
We provide service for the domains listed below. We operate these domains impartially and provide service to members and non-members alike. We don't allow any single entity to have more than one domain in the functional subdomains such as "k12.mo.us" or "cc.mo.us."
- cc.mo.us gen.mo.us
- k12.mo.us lib.mo.us
- mus.mo.us tec.mo.us saint-louis.mo.us
- st-louis.mo.us (deprecated; no new registrations are accepted)
Why don't you accept new registrations in the st-louis.mo.us domain?
The US domain registrar decided several years ago to use only the US Post Office names for cities. The USPS doesn't abbreviate Saint Louis so we don't either any more. The existing "st-louis.mo.us" domains were grandfathered in.
Do you treat members differently than non-members with regards to the US domains?
We try not to. We do require that non-members provide their own DNS servers for the domains they register and we simply point to those servers. We are willing to set up our machines as DNS servers for our members. Also, we don't require that members fill out a full US Domain request form, since we already have all the address and contact information we need for them. Non-members have to fill out the form, but it is fairly simple. That's about it. We don't charge members or non-members for registration.
How do I request a domain name?
Members should see the page on DNS services in Services. Non-members should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and fill out the form sent by the auto-responder.
Will you register domains for members in other domains such as .EDU or .ORG?
We used to provide this as a service to our members, but billing and tracking has become too much of a problem. If members register their own domains we will provide primary or secondary DNS service as needed. We would consider it polite if you e-mailed us about this before requesting the domain, though.