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DNSSEC on workstations


DNS Root zone is going to be signed on July 15, 2010. Fedora will bring benefit of this important feature to the end users and their workstations thus all DNS traffic will be secured by DNSSEC.


  • Email: atkac at redhat dot com

Current status

  • Targeted release: Fedora 14
  • Last updated: 13-07-2010
  • Percentage of completion: 15%

Detailed Description

All major DNS servers in Fedora run with DNSSEC validation enabled by default since Fedora 11 so we have a lot of experience from server environment. When a DNS server is installed on the workstation, NetworkManager will expose new checkbox, called DNSSEC, and if user checks it, NM will start the server and update /etc/resolv.conf. After that all DNS traffic will go through DNSSEC-validating resolver.

This DNSSEC-aware environment needs only two keys, for the root zone and the ISC DLV register. Both domain administrators follow RFC 5011 so keys will be updated automatically.

Benefit to Fedora

All DNS traffic will be secured by DNSSEC


  • by default, DNS server should use only servers whose are available via DHCP. This information can be easily obtained via libnmserver library from NetworkManager. This library has already passed the review process.
  • Add new checkbox to NetworkManager which will enable/disable DNSSEC validation (this hasn't been consulted with NM developers, yet)

How To Test

  • install NetworkManager and bind packages
  • check the "dnssec" checkbox and verify /etc/resolv.conf points to localhost and named daemon runs fine
  • check that DNS responses are validated (via dig utility)

User Experience

Although this change won't be visible to common users (except the "DNSSEC" checkbox), users will be secured from various DNS spoofing and DNS cache-poisonning attacks.


  • bind - small patch (integration with the libnmserver library) is ready and tested but not submitted to upstream, yet
  • NetworkManager - nothing has been done, yet. New checkbox must be developed and added

Contingency Plan

Drop related patches from bind and NetworkManager. After that both will have same functionality as in F13.


There is no related documentation except this page and libnmserver ( page.

Release Notes

NetworkManager got new functionality which allows to secure DNS traffic via DNSSEC technology. NetworkManager uses the BIND nameserver as a DNSSEC resolver. All received DNS responses are proved to be correct. If particular domain is signed and failed to validate then resolver returns SERFVAIL instead of invalidated response, which means something is wrong.

Comments and Discussion