DNS Configuration in FreeBSD

Jul 19, 2023 • FreeBSDSoftware

In a world where we identify websites and remote servers by their human-readable domain names rather than raw IP addresses, DNS (Domain Name System) plays a pivotal role. This blog takes an extensive dive into DNS configuration in FreeBSD.

FreeBSD, a powerful, open-source operating system, may seem intimidating, especially when compared with its Linux counterparts, but don’t worry. This guide assists you in maneuvering through the ins and outs of the DNS configuration process by indulging in practical, step-by-step instructions.

But before we delve into the nitty-gritty of the DNS configuration, let’s take a brief detour and understand what DNS is and why we need it.


DNS is primarily an addressing system for the internet. It’s like a digital phonebook, translating human-readable domain names into numeric IP addresses. This numerology of the internet is vital as computers communicate using these numbers.


To configure DNS in FreeBSD, you’ll be working with the resolv.conf file found in the /etc directory.

Step1: Open the /etc/resolv.conf file with a text editor:

# vi /etc/resolv.conf

Step 2: The file should contain the following lines:

search yourdomain.com

Here, replace yourdomain.com with your actual domain name. The ‘nameserver’ line indicates the IP of your DNS servers. You can have multiple nameserver lines.

Step 3: Save the file and exit the text editor.

That’s it! Your FreeBSD system should now be able to resolve domain names.


After setting up the DNS, testing it is highly recommended to ensure it’s properly resolving domain names. The dig or the nslookup command is available for this.


# dig freebsdsoftware.org


# nslookup freebsdsoftware.org

If your DNS configuration is working fine, these commands should return the IP address of the queried domain.

Remember, any changes in the DNS configuration will have to update accordingly on your DNS server. For more on this, consult these articles regarding FreeBSD system administration and FreeBSD network configuration and troubleshooting.


Errors are an integral part of the learning process. Encountering one? Don’t fret! Our guide on common FreeBSD errors and solutions can aid you in rectifying them.

Setting up DNS in FreeBSD might seem overwhelming initially, but as with most FreeBSD tasks, it becomes simpler as you get accustomed to it. The FreeBSD community and its plentiful resources are always at your disposal to guide you through your journey.

For preventive measures, we recommend having a robust backup. Our guide on how to backup and restore in FreeBSD will come handy for that.

That’s all there is to DNS Configuration in FreeBSD. Keep exploring, Keep configuring. Exciting times ahead!

Further Reading:

  1. FreeBSD Firewalls - Enhancing Security

  2. Getting the Best Performance From Your FreeBSD System

  3. Running Virtual Machines on FreeBSD

  4. FreeBSD Ports

Happy tinkering!

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