Solaris Naming Setup and Configuration Guide

Server Configuration and Data File Names

To function correctly, the in.named daemon requires a configuration file and four data files.

Caution - Caution -

The IP addresses and network numbers used in examples and code samples in this manual are for illustration purposes only. Do not use them as shown because they may have been assigned to an actual network or host.

Configuration File

The master server configuration file is /etc/named.conf. (See "The named.conf File".) The configuration file contains a list of domain names and the file names containing host information. (See Solaris Naming Administration Guide for additional information on the named.conf file.)

Names of DNS Data Files

So long as you are internally consistent, you can name the zone data files anything you want. This flexibility may lead to some confusion when working at different sites or referring to different DNS manuals and books.

For example, the file names used in Sun manuals and at most many Solaris sites vary from those used in the book DNS and BIND by Albitz and Liu, O'Reilly & Associates, 1992, and both of those nomenclatures have some differences from that used in the public-domain Name Server Operations Guide for BIND, University of California.

In addition, this manual and other DNS documentation use generic names that identify a file's main purpose, and specific example names for that file in code samples. For example, Solaris Naming manuals use the generic name hosts when describing the function and role of that file, and the example names db.doc and db.sales in code samples.

For reference purposes, Table 13-1 compares BIND file names from these three sources:

Table 13-1 File Name Examples

Solaris Names 

O'Reilly Names or other names 

U.C. Berkeley Names 

Content and Purpose of File 

/etc/named.conf, same file name for all three sources

BIND 8.1 adds a new named.conf file to replace the earlier named.boot file. This configuration file adds security, startup options, logging. It specifies the type of server it is running on and selectively applies options on a per-zone or per-server basis, rather than all zones or servers. It contains a list of domain names and the names of the data files.

/etc/resolv.conf, same file name for all three sources

This file resides on every DNS client (including DNS servers) and designates the servers that the client queries for DNS information.




This file establishes the names of root servers and lists their addresses. 

Generic: hosts Examples: db.doc, db.sales

Generic: db.domain Examples:, db.fx

Generic: hosts

Example: ucbhosts

This file contains all the data about the machines in the local zone that the server serves. 

Generic: hosts.rev Examples: doc.rev

Generic: db.ADDR Examples db.192.249.249 db.192.249.253


This file specifies a zone in the domain, a special domain that allows reverse (address-to-name) mapping.


Generic: db.cache Example: db.127.0.0


This file specifies the address for the local loopback interface, or local host. 

$INCLUDE files, same convention for all three sources

Any file identified by an $INCLUDE() statement in a data file.

Data Files

The required data files are:


An include file is any file named in a $INCLUDE() statement in a DNS data file. $INCLUDE files can be used to separate different types of data into multiple files for your convenience. (See Solaris Naming Administration Guide for additional details.)