resolver problems

James oscartheduck at
Mon Oct 29 18:28:27 PDT 2007

On 10/29/07, jekillen <jekillen at> wrote:
> On Oct 28, 2007, at 3:53 PM, James wrote:
> >
> >
> > On 10/28/07, jekillen <jekillen at> wrote:
> >> I am still having resolver problems with my 6.2 system.
> >> It has shown up with trying to install ports from the ftp site.
> >> I discovered that there is no resolv.conf file, so I created one.
> >> The funny thing is if I ping one of my web sites with
> >> www.<domainName>.com ping can't resolve the address.
> >> but if I do <actualHostName>.<domainName>.com it works.
> > That's probably because you're pinging them via the internal address,
> > not the external address. If you've got a little router, it's grabbed
> > the internal names. If not, then this is interesting, but the same
> > fundamental idea would seem to hold.
> That is a possibility, the possibility that seems the most plausible. I
> guess I will have to disconnect the internal
> network and try it to eliminate that. The router is the DSL modem
> router, so it could be redirecting the dns query
> at itself and not sending it out and then having it come back

It just hit me that the simplest way to solve your first problem (not being
able to update) would be to look up the server you're wanting to connect to
from a working computer, note down its IP address, and edit /etc/hosts to
include the mapping.

> >
> >
> >> Just for control test purposes I tried from a Mac OSX machine
> >> and was able to ping www.<domainName>.com. I even have
> >> my own DNS servers listed as servers to contact in resolv.conf
> > Okay, did you try setting up the /etc/resolv.conf on the FreeBSD boxes
> > to match the one on the Mac OS X machine?
> I will have to look at that. Mac is somewhat more complicated with name
> resolution, or can be (from experience)*. I have not
> looked at resolv.conf on that machine in a while. There was a file on
> Linux and Unix like machines, nsswitch.conf or something,
> that would tell the system how to go about looking up addresses. It was
> a list of things to try like file(hosts file), dns, etc. and I have
> forgotten the name because it has been too long since I looked at one
> of those.
> * I just looked at it and besides the line 'search'  the
> nameserver list is in a different order, with the isp's servers
> coming first.

I remember looking at this that Mac OS is simplest to look up information
for using the graphical network information tool in system preferences. If
you're using DHCP, of course, it might be a little trickier, but you sound
like a static kind of person.

> >
> > It's also possible it's your route tables. But tell me first if you've
> > got a small home router that you're connecting everything via.
> The only router is the ADSL modem/router. All of the machines are
> multihomed. The ones that connect to the internet directly
> have static ip assigned.

Is that from your service provider, or does the router use DHCP to share out
its connection?

These are the only network traffic the modem
> deals with. The inside network has a few switches and
> that is it.
> I do not have any of the machines specifically set to route from one
> interface/address to another. The only connections are
> processes like Apache that listen to all connected interfaces. None of
> those are set to proxy traffic. I believe ftpd would listen
> on all connected interfaces also. Ftp is a little troubling to me
> because there does not seem to be nearly as much info about
> it as, say, Apache. I would think that there would be a more
> substantial configuration file for it. It would be nice to be able to
> specify, and limit which interfaces and network address to listen to
> and send and receive from. As it is, I take care of that with
> tcpwrappers.
> Thanks for the response:
> Jeff K

So, what I'm understanding is this:

you have several machines. One is a Mac box that works perfectly. The rest
are FreeBSD boxes that don't work perfectly.

The way they don't work perfectly is that they're not resolving DNS
correctly. Other network services work fine, you can ping out by IP address
etc, just not DNS.

You have either several IP addresses from your ISP, or you have one IP
address at your router/modem, and it is performing NAT/DHCP to handle
transforming your network connection to a shared connection from several

I just want to get a clear idea in my head of the picture of this thing so
that I understand the problem :)

If your router is performing DHCP/NAT, turn one of your FreeBSD boxes onto
DHCP, copy down it's resolv.conf, configure it statically again and set up
all the boxes correctly.

If doing that doesn't resolve things, you may need to know the first step of
your network. Which in your case is probably the private address of the
modem from your ISP. In the case of statically addressing things, I've
always, *always* had to add a line like:


to my /etc/rc.conf

This strikes me as possibly the problem, in fact. If everything else is
switched up, the switches could be allowing internal traffic, but the
computers don't know where the route out to the internet is.

Oh, and incidentally, use "reply all", not "reply". There are a lot of
people on this list who know a lot more about networking than I do, and they
all want to help too.

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