How to Find My DNS Server IP Address in Linux

DNS (Domain Name System) is a fundamental facilitator of several networking technologies such as mail servers, Internet browsing, and streaming services e.g. Netflix and Spotify, among others.

It works on a special computer called a DNS server – which keeps a database record of several public IP addresses along with their corresponding hostnames for it to resolve or translate hostnames to IP addresses upon user request.

This happens so that we would not need to bother ourselves with remembering the IP addresses of the different websites we visit.

While there are several things we can discuss on DNS servers such as redirection and malware attack prevention, our focus today is on how to find out your very own dns server IP address.

There are several ways to check for it depending on the Operating System that you’re running but Linux, BSD, and Unix-like systems all share the same method so let’s begin with them.

How to Find My DNS Server IP Address

1. To find out your DNS Server IP address, use the following cat command or less command.

$ cat /etc/resolv.conf
$ less /etc/resolv.conf

2. Another way is to use the following grep command.

$ grep "nameserver" /etc/resolv.conf nameserver

3. In newer Linux distributions that use systemd, you can use the systemd-resolve command to check the DNS server.

$ systemd-resolve --status | grep "DNS Servers"

4. If you’re using NetworkManager, you can use the nmcli command to get the DNS server information.

$ nmcli dev show | grep 'IP4.DNS'

Here, nameserver is a name server IP address in what is called the dot notation – the format that applications on your workstation use for DNS routing.

Find DNS Name Server in Linux
Find DNS Name Server in Linux

How to Find My Website DNS Server IP Address

To find out a website DNS Server IP address, you can use the following dig command, which is used to query DNS information.

$ dig
Sample Output
; <<>> DiG 9.8.2rc1-RedHat-9.8.2-0.68.rc1.el6_10.1 <<>>
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 30412
; IN	A ;; ANSWER SECTION: 21	IN	A 21	IN	A ;; Query time: 0 msec
;; WHEN: Mon Jun 24 07:25:42 2019
;; MSG SIZE rcvd: 61

The output will provide you with a list of IP addresses for authoritative nameservers for your website (i.e., the DNS servers responsible for your domain). 21	IN	A 21	IN	A

Please note that the actual IP addresses you receive may vary depending on your website hosting provider or domain registrar. If your website is using third-party DNS services like Cloudflare or Google Cloud DNS, the IP addresses will be specific to those services.

Easy right? Perhaps we’ll talk about primary and secondary DNS Server addresses next time. Till then, feel free to share and drop your comments/suggestions in the discussion section below.