SUMMARY: bad packets in DNS transactions

From: Howard Schultens (
Date: Mon Jul 27 1992 - 11:42:00 CDT


--- The problem:

After installing NIS for use in conjunction with DNS on our local network,
which is connected by a bridge to the university computer center, i.e.
the internet, bad packet messages were received from the secondary name
server. DNS services were otherwise apparently unaffected: telnet, ftp,
etc worked.

--- The solution:

The DNS server process on the secondary name server had died. A call to
the computer center set it running again. The mystery is why our NIS server
always sent a request to the secondary DNS server since it always got correct
information from the primary server. The consensus is that our NIS server
was impatient waiting for the primary DNS server to reply (i.e. the timeout
period is quite short) and therefore sent a request to the secondary server.
No-one knows how to lengthen the timeout period.

--- Thanks to:

Matt Crawford <>: he got there furstest with the mostest,
                                         within hours of my request. He had
                                         even checked out the secondary name
                                         server. (Simon Leinen): he also explained the superfluous calls
                                     to the secondary server and suggested
                                     implementing a (caching) DNS server on
                                     our NIS server to reduce ethernet traffic.

Dave Mitchell <>: noted that the "unreachable
                                     bad port" message must mean that >named<
                                     is not running on the secondary server.

--- To keep this summary short, I am including neither my original request
    nor the texts of the replies. I will be glad to supply them if anyone
    wants them.

\ ..\ /../ Howard Schultens Tel: ++49 551 39 5914
 \.o.\ /../ Zentrum Physiologie FAX: ++49 551 39 5923
  \o.o7 /: / Abteilung Neuro- und
   \o/ / \ Sinnesphysiologie E-Mail:
    V R .oo \ Humboldtallee 23
     / o o.o \ D-3400 Goettingen
    <_*o*_*.*_> Germany

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