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What is Private DNS?

January 26, 2022
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Heather Oliver is a Technical Writer for Constellix and DNS Made Easy, subsidiaries of Tiggee LLC. She’s fascinated by technology and loves adding a little spark to complex topics. Want to connect? Find her on LinkedIn.

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With the world’s increasing reliance on virtual products and services, enterprise businesses require more advanced solutions than ever before. One of the biggest challenges is network and infrastructure that are secure and can handle modern-day demand. More and more organizations are starting to realize that their online platforms are only as strong as their DNS—a critical component for everything that transpires online.

One of the solutions that enterprise-level organizations are turning to is Private or dedicated DNS. This blog will provide some insight into what private DNS is and how it works.

DNS Hosting Explained

To start, let’s go over the basics of DNS hosting. Simply put, DNS hosting is a third-party solution that provides resolution services for domains. When an internet user queries a website or online application, they do so by entering a web address that includes a domain name (constellix.com). It is the DNS host that holds the IP address of the queried site, and it’s the host’s authoritative nameservers that provide the final answer that lets resolvers know where to send the user.

Tip: Want to learn more about DNS? Watch DNS Explained, which breaks it down in simple, easy-to-understand terms.

What is a Virtual Cloud Network (VCN)?

Most Private DNS configurations run on VCNs or virtual cloud networks. A VCN is a system of connected devices that are controlled wirelessly, via software. VCNs gives you full control over your own network environment by allowing you to create routing tables, subnets, and firewalls, etc., as well as to assign a private IP address space. As it is a virtual network, having VCNs also make it easier for your company to scale.

What is Private DNS and How Does it Work?

Private DNS is a solution that allows your company to create and manage your own private DNS zones in a dedicated space within a DNS host’s infrastructure. This provides you with a private DNS resolver that answers queries for your virtual cloud network (VCN). When using Private DNS, your IT team is able to work on a single platform, but deploy across multiple internal platforms, such as on-premises networks and other VCNs.

When using Private DNS, you are able to use your own custom domain names rather than those of your provider. Any record in your private DNS zone will be resolved within your private network, rather than through the internet as a normal query would do.

What’s the Difference Between Private DNS and Premium DNS?

The main difference between Private DNS and premium or managed DNS, is that typical premium DNS is handled solely by your DNS provider. Private DNS, on the other hand, lets you resolve your own queries for VCNs linked to your private zone.

Private DNS Cons and Limitations

While Private DNS has many advantages, including control and scalability, there are some things to consider before diving in headfirst. For example, your Private DNS will only be as strong as your provider’s infrastructure. What many people don’t realize is that if their DNS provider is having issues, this will also affect anyone with Private DNS, it’s running on the same network as your provider. 

Many companies sell Private DNS as a dedicated DNS solution. However, if you are running over a virtual network, your DNS isn’t truly dedicated. To be so would require dedicated space allocated on bare metal infrastructure at multiple points of presence (PoPs). This isn’t something most providers can offer, as they run their own services or virtual private servers (VPS).

Did you know?: Constellix runs on parent company Tiggee LLC’s network, a fully in-house built and maintained bare metal infrastructure with nameservers positioned strategically around the globe. Our network has the longest-running uptime history in the industry—over 12 years and counting.

Is Private DNS Right For You?

As every business and use case is unique, there isn’t a yes or no answer for this question. That said, Private DNS is more suited for large, enterprise-level companies with multiple internal systems and networks that require ultimate scalability but don’t want the cost or maintenance hassles that come from running their own infrastructure. If you are a small or medium-sized business, you are usually better off with a solid premium/managed DNS solution, unless you have a special use case. Even mega conglomerates can benefit from Premium DNS over Private DNS when choosing a provider that offers advanced products and services, has a strong infrastructure, and is built to scale. But if your business uses on-premises networks and VCNs and requires hostname resolution across/between multiple networks, Private DNS is an excellent choice.

Related Resources:

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