One of the useful features that we offer with cPanel & WHM is the ability to run your own DNS server . The nameserver features we have provided in the past have included PowerDNS, MyDNS, BIND, and NSD. With the release of cPanel & WHM Version 78, we are deprecating NSD and MyDNS. New installations of cPanel & WHM version 78 will not allow you to select the NSD or MyDNS nameservers. Our long-term goal is to remove these options from the product in version 88. The plan moving forward is to dedicate time and resources to improving the back-end of PowerDNS, making it more reliable and robust for you and your customer’s DNS needs. Let’s talk about what PowerDNS is and the added benefits it provides.
PowerDNS (sometimes referred to as pdns) is open-source DNS software that offers high performance with very low memory requirements. cPanel’s implementation of PowerDNS reads DNS data from the BIND files and stores DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extension) data in an SQLite database. This makes our implementation of PowerDNS compatible with most of cPanel’s DNS management tools. PowerDNS also allows you to use DNSSEC with your domain’s DNS records, adding a layer of security to your domain’s DNS records by using digital signatures and cryptographic keys to validate the DNS responses’ authenticity. These signatures help protect clients from attacks such as spoofing or a Man in the Middle attack.
Why Move From MyDNS and NSD?
Aside from the aforementioned benefits of using PowerDNS, the short answer is that the software for MyDNS has not been updated since 2015. With outdated software comes the prospects of malware infection, compromises, and other issues that could result in a security breach of some sort. By narrowing the number of options available to serve DNS within cPanel & WHM, we can focus our attention on improving features and testing for the remaining options.
One of the more popular asks for improving PowerDNS is to add MySQL support for the PowerDNS backend. If this feature is one that you would like to take advantage of, please navigate to the Feature Request and vote on this use-case, or submit your own!
Ready to make the switch?
Moving to PowerDNS is incredibly easy. All you have to do is Navigate in WHM to the ‘Nameserver Selection’ interface, and adjust the server selection to PowerDNS. Our software handles the migration for you!
If you have any questions or concerns about PowerDNS or the deprecation of MyDNS and NSD or want to discuss this topic further, please join us on the cPanel Forums, on our official Slack and Discord channels, or the Official cPanel Subreddit.
What is the difference between BIND and PowerDNS?
BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain) and PowerDNS are both popular DNS (Domain Name System) server software that provide the functionality to resolve domain names to IP addresses and vice versa. However, there are some differences between the two:
1. Architecture: BIND is a monolithic DNS server that runs as a single process, whereas PowerDNS follows a modular architecture. PowerDNS consists of separate components, such as the Authoritative Server, Recursor, and DNS-over-HTTP (DoH) server, which can be used individually or together based on the specific requirements.
2. Database Support: BIND traditionally uses zone files as the primary data source for DNS records. In contrast, PowerDNS has native support for various databases, such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, and SQLite, allowing for dynamic storage and retrieval of DNS data. This makes it easier to manage and update DNS records using database backends.
3. DNS Protocol Support: Both BIND and PowerDNS support the standard DNS protocols, including DNSSEC (DNS Security Extensions) for securing DNS transactions. However, PowerDNS has broader support for newer DNS protocols like DNS-over-TLS (DoT) and DNS-over-HTTPS (DoH), which provide encryption and privacy enhancements for DNS communication.
4. Scalability and Performance: PowerDNS is known for its ability to handle high traffic loads and scale horizontally. It can distribute DNS queries across multiple servers using mechanisms like DNS Anycast and DNS load balancing. BIND, on the other hand, is also capable of handling significant traffic but may require more manual configuration and optimization for large-scale deployments.
5. Community and Support: BIND has a long-standing history and a large community of users and contributors. It is widely used and well-documented, which can be beneficial for finding resources and getting support. PowerDNS also has an active community and offers commercial support options through its parent company, but its user base may be relatively smaller compared to BIND.
6. Configuration and Administration: BIND uses traditional configuration files (named.conf) and zone files for managing DNS settings. PowerDNS provides a more flexible and user-friendly configuration system with options to use configuration files, command-line tools, or web-based interfaces for administration.
Ultimately, the choice between BIND and PowerDNS depends on the specific needs and preferences of the user or organization. BIND is a mature and widely adopted DNS server with extensive features and community support. PowerDNS offers more flexibility, modern database support, and enhanced protocol support, making it a suitable choice for those seeking advanced DNS capabilities and scalability.