Pros and Cons of Hosting your own Nameservers

Benefits of hosting your Nameservers

  • Ease of changing hosting providers: Having your own nameservers make it easy when you are changing your hosting providers for two reasons:
    • Zero downtime in switching
    • Minimal change on Domain Register (change Nameserver and Hostname reords only)
    • Other nameserver changes can be done easily with your own nameserver, even scripted
  • Vanity Name Servers: Your clients may, particularly if you are in reseller business, check your Domain records including your name servers in a bid to identify your genuineness and commitment.
  • Ease of managing nameserver: You can easily script it or use User interface of your choice.

Disadvantages of hosting your own nameservers

  • Need Knowledge: You need to understand DNS well and be conversant in managing nameservers.  Messing up DNS records while client is shouting is not a good experience to have
  • Responsible for Security: You need to ensure that the Nameserver Software is always updated and protect it against all DNS attack vectors
  • Responsible for performance: If you are using the server for other purposes, most likely you are, then your nameserver performance is dependent on the load of the system. When your system is overloaded, havinbg the namserver also slow down adds to the load and more importantly aggravates the problem. You need to ensure performance of your namservers
  • Responsible for redundancy: There should be at least two namservers for redundancy and failover. Unless you have multiple servers that you can use, you are removing redundancy by pointing both the nameseerver IP at the same server.

Domain name registrars nowadays provide free DNS services to better retain their clients by:

  • making it harder to switch
  • giving better value for money

I have done both and I find using Domain registrars service gives less headache but is harder to configure and boring when you have large number of domains.

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