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6. Maintenance

Keeping it working.

There is one maintenance task you have to do on nameds, other than keeping them running. That's keeping the root.hints file updated. The easiest way is using dig, first run dig with no arguments, you will get the root.hints according to your own server. Then ask one of the listed root servers with dig @rootserver. You will note that the output looks terribly like a root.hints file. Save it to a file (dig . ns > and replace the old root.hints with it.

Remember to restart named after replacing the cache file.

Al Longyear sent me this script that can be run automatically to update root.hints, install a crontab entry to run it once a month and forget it. The script assumes you have mail working and that the mail-alias `hostmaster' is defined. You must hack it to suit your setup.

# Update the nameserver cache information file once per month.
# This is run automatically by a cron entry.
 echo "To: hostmaster <hostmaster>"
 echo "From: system <root>"
 echo "Subject: Automatic update of the named.conf file"

 export PATH=/sbin:/usr/sbin:/bin:/usr/bin:
 cd /var/named

 dig . ns >

 echo "The named.conf file has been updated to contain the following   

 chown root.root
 chmod 444
 rm -f root.hints.old
 mv root.hints root.hints.old
 mv root.hints
 ndc restart
 echo "The nameserver has been restarted to ensure that the update is complete."
 echo "The previous root.hints file is now called   
) 2>&1 | /usr/lib/sendmail -t
exit 0

Some of you might have picked up that the root.hints file is also available by ftp from Internic. Please don't use ftp to update root.hints, the above method is much more friendly to the net.

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