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BIND Stats

In Debian the BIND server will by default append statistics to the file /var/cache/bind/named.stats when the command rndc stats (which seems to be undocumented) is run. The default for RHEL4 seems to be /var/named/chroot/var/named/data/named_stats.txt.

The output will include the time-stamp of the log in the number of seconds since 1970-01-01 00:00:00 UTC (see my previous post explaining how to convert this to a regular date format [1]).

By default this only logs a summary for all zones, which is not particularly useful if you have multiple zones. If you edit the BIND configuration and put zone-statistics 1; in the options section then it will log separate statistics for each zone. Unfortunately if you add this and apply the change via rndc reload I don’t know of any convenient way that you can determine when this change was made and therefore the period of time for which the per-zone statistics were kept. So after applying this to my servers I restarted the named processes so that it will be obvious from the process start time when the statistics started.

The reason I became interested in this is when a member of a mailing list that I subscribe to was considering the DNSMadeEasy.com service. That company runs primary DNS servers for $US15 per annum which allows 1,000,000 queries per month, 3 zones, and 120 records (for either a primary or a secondary server). Based on three hours of statistics it seems like my zone coker.com.au is going to get about 360,000 queries a month (between both the primary and the secondary server). So the $15 a year package could accommodate 3 such zones for either primary or secondary (they each got about half the traffic). I’m not considering outsourcing my DNS, but it is interesting to consider how the various offers add up.

Another possibility for people who are considering DNS outsourcing is Xname.org which provides free DNS (primary and secondary) but request contributions from business customers (or anyone else).

Updated because I first published it without getting stats from my secondary server.

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