What is a DNS Lookup?
DNS (Domain Name System) is a system which provides easy addressing for servers on the internet. For example, if you were to visit the Freeola website, your computer would use DNS to find the address of the freeola.com server where the website is held. This address would then be used to connect to Freeola's web server and download the web page that you had requested. If DNS wasn't used, you would need to remember the IP address of each website you wanted to visit, for example, to visit freeola.com, you would need to remember 188.8.131.52 each time you visited.
This Domain DNS Lookup tool runs several checks on the DNS records in place for your domain name and provides feedback from these. This can help with diagnosing problems with the DNS settings on your domain such as DNS propagation, or ensuring that DNS records have been set correctly. Find out more about Domain DNS.
If your domain name is not registered with Freeola and GetDotted, you are able to transfer your domain name for full DNS control.
What checks are run during a DNS Lookup?
Parent Nameserver Checks
The parent nameservers are the nameservers of the provider of the domain name type that you are using. These nameservers should provide details of the current nameservers in place for your domain name which are then used for looking up DNS records for your domain.
Results for the parent nameservers checks can be found on the Parent tab of the results page.
DNS Nameserver Checks
The nameservers on your domain name are the servers that provide all of the DNS information in relation to your domain name. The NS records on your nameservers should be the same as those provided from the parent.
Several checks are run against the nameservers in place on your domain name. These are to ensure the consistency of the records returned from the parent and your nameservers, to make sure that all records are correct and that records are optimised.
Results for the nameserver checks can be found on the NS tab.
MX Record Lookup
The MX records on your domain name are used for email purposes and tell sending email providers where to direct email for your domain. We lookup MX records on your domain name to ensure that they are valid and consistent. A test is also run to ensure that there are reverse DNS (PTR) records in place for the IP addresses provided with your MX servers. As part of the MX record check, we look for spf records too. Your results will show the SPF record in place on your domain name if you have one.
Results from the MX record checker can be found on the MX tab of the results page.
For a full description of MX Records and their purpose, go to our dedicated MX Records page.
Web DNS Record Checks
Web DNS records are the records on your domain name that are used for displaying a website. There are two main types of records that are used for this, these are A Records and CNAME records. A Records are IP addresses that point directly to a webserver. CNAME records are hostnames, which when looked up should return an A record for a web server (or another CNAME). Checks are run against the records that you have in place to enable you to ensure that there are no issues with these.
Recently IPv6 AAAA records have started to be used for websites and are planned to be the successor to the current IPv4 system. You are able to check that IPv6 AAAA records are in place on your domain name and that they are providing the correct information.
Results for the web DNS checks can be found on the Web tab of the results page.
Custom DNS Record Lookups
There are many other DNS records that you may wish to check. You run custom queries against your domain name to perform a txt record lookup, or check SRV, SOA records. You are also able to run checks against different aliases which can help to ensure that any subdomains are in place as required.
If you want to know more about subdomains and their use, take a look at our Subdomains page.
Custom DNS checks can run from the Custom tab of the results page.
Domain DNS Glossary
There are lots of different DNS records which all have different functionality. We've explained below the purpose of each record and how it affects your domain.