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USENIX Technical Program - Abstract - Internet Technologies & Systems 99

Rapid Reverse DNS Lookups for Web Servers

William LeFebvre, Group sys Consulting; and Ken Craig, CNN Internet Technologies


When a web server wants to learn the domain name of one of its clients, it must perform a lookup in the Domain Name System's "reverse domain", . These lookups can take time and may have an adverse impact on the web server's response to its clients. Rapid DNS is an intermediate client/server system that operates between a web server and a DNS server. It provides caching of the results and, more importantly, limits web server lookups to the data contained in the cache. This provides a significant improvement in response time for situations in which knowledge of the hostname is not critical to the web server's operation. The Rapid DNS system was implemented for use in the web farm that serves the collection of Cable News Network (CNN) sites. Its design is presented, along with measurements of its performance in the CNN environment.
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Last changed: 25 Feb 2002 ml
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