edu Technical FAQ

We are only authoritative for nameservers in the .edu domain. Therefore we only collect IP addresses for nameservers that end in .edu. Nameservers that don't end in .edu are registered in their second level domain through the registrar of that domain. (e.g., Nameserver is registered by at the registrar for If we were to collect IP addresses for non .edu nameservers, it would be for display purposes only. Since there is no overall methodology for keeping information in synch between registrars, we have chosen not to collect or display data that is not authoritative and may be incorrect if not kept up to date.

IP addresses for nameservers not ending in .edu are not collected by EDUCAUSE and are therefore not displayed. To find the IP address of a nameserver that doesn't end in .edu, visit the VeriSign Whois server at or at the Whois server of the Registrar of the nameserver.

Changes to a nameserver IP address or changes to the nameserver name in the same domain, can be made through the EDUCAUSE Web site. (e.g., to If you want to change the name of a nameserver from one domain to another domain (e.g., to and both in the .edu domain) you will be prompted for the passwords for both domains. Or if you wish, two nameservers can have the same IP address.

Changes can take up to 2 business days to be reflected in the EDUCAUSE Whois server and the registry database. New domains and deleted domains will be reflected in the EDUCAUSE Whois server and the registry database as soon as a confirmation is sent out to the domain administrators.

The root zone file, which contains domain names, host names, and IP addresses, is updated simultaneously with the registry database. Once the zone file has been updated, the Root Servers propagate the information throughout the Internet.

All changes are logged in the .edu server at You can either visit the Web site or point your telnet based Whois client to Changes that are sent to VeriSign (New Domains, Name Servers names, Name Server IP addresses) can be verified by checking the VeriSign Whois server at Once your changes are visible on the VeriSign Whois server, it may take a number of hours before the changes are propagated throughout the Internet.

The IETF has published several Requests for Comment (RFCs) that cover best practices for DNS, as recommended by DNS architects and planners for the Internet. You might find the following RFCs useful, especially if you are planning a large DNS design:

  • RFC 1912, "Common DNS Operational and Configuration Errors"
  • RFC 2182, "Selection and Operation of Secondary DNS Servers"
  • RFC 2219, "Use of DNS Aliases for Network Services"

There are many great resources on the Internet for learning more about DNS. Here is a link to one of those resources.

Autonomous System Numbers (ASNs) are globally unique numbers that are used to identify autonomous systems (ASes), and which enable an AS to exchange exterior routing information between neighboring ASes. An AS is a connected group of IP networks that adhere to a single and clearly defined routing policy. More information and registration information can be found here.

An IN-ADDR.ARPA domain allows for mapping of IP addresses into domain names. This provides address to hostname reverse resolution. IN-ADDR domains are represented using the network number in reverse. For example, the IN-ADDR domain for network is represented as

You almost always need reverse resolution.

You should ask your upstream provider about registering your IN-ADDR.ARPA domains. If you are working directly with a regional registry, visit their Web site.

EDUCAUSE does not issue SSL certificates. You can obtain an SSL certificate through VeriSign.

Orphan "A" records should not be in the .edu zone. An explanation of the implications of removing an orphan record can be found at Orphan.

Yes, we support both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses when managing your hosts. The .edu zone also supports IPv6. If you don't have an IPv6 address range yet, you will need to obtain one from your ISP or from ARIN directly