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Managing NFS and NIS, 2nd Edition by Hal Stern, Ricardo Labiaga, Mike Eisler

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Chapter 5. Living with Multiple Directory Servers

Domain name servers

The hostname management provided by NIS can be integrated with an Internet Domain Name Service (DNS), or the DNS facilities can be used to replace the NIS host map in its entirety. We'll avoid a full-length discussion of setting up a name server. That process depends on the type of name server supported by your vendor, and it is best described by your vendor's documentation. Instead, this section concentrates on differences between the scope of the two hostname services, and support for DNS with and without NIS. Note that the implementation of Domain name services provided by your vendor may not be called DNS. If the Berkeley Internet Name Domain name service or one of its derivatives is used, the service is often called BIND.

DNS versus NIS

DNS provides a hierarchical hostname management system that spans the entire Internet. Each level in the hierarchy designates authoritative name servers that contain maps of hostnames and IP addresses, similar to the NIS hosts map but on a larger scale. The DNS server for a large name service domain would have host information merged from dozens of NIS domains. First among the advantages of DNS is its ability to decentralize responsibility for the maintenance of hostname-to-IP address mappings and the resulting domain name qualification that is used to differentiate identically named hosts.

Decentralized name management means that each organization running a name service domain ...

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