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How can I check which DNS server am I using (in Linux)? I am using network manager and a wired connection to my university's LAN. (I am trying to find out why my domain doesn't get resolved)

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7 Answers 7

up vote 30 down vote accepted

You should be able to get some reasonable information in:

$ cat /etc/resolv.conf 
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However, please be aware that (on modern Linuxen) the contents of /etc/nsswitch.conf dictate what name services are used (DNS, LDAP, etc) and in what order. Say fgrep hosts: /etc/nsswitch.conf. If it only references DNS, /etc/resolv.conf is the right place to look for your nameservers. But chances are you're also using mDNS (aka ZeroConf, aka Avahi, aka Bonjour, etc), etc. In that case, things depend on what you're using. –  Alexios Jan 12 '12 at 13:35

I think you can also query DNS and it will show you what server returned the result. Try this:

dig yourserver.somedomain.xyz

And the response should tell you what server(s) returned the result.

You can also tell dig to query a specific DNS server.

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On Debian this requires the dnsutils package. –  Faheem Mitha Jan 14 '12 at 20:54

If you are using network manager probably you get all network parameters from your dhcp server at your university.

If you don't want use your shell to check your dns settings (as described by hesse and Alexios), you can see them from the panel "Network information".

You can reach this panel by pressing right mouse button on network manager icon and selecting "Connection Information" from the menu.

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Here's how I do it:

nm-tool | grep DNS
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This one is usefull if you are using VPN and NetworkManager. Your /etc/resolv.conf will point to your machine, with dnsmasq resolving names as configured by NetworkManager. –  Grzegorz Żur May 30 '13 at 11:32
On Debian this requires the network-manager package. –  TranslucentCloud Feb 3 at 19:44

Just do an, nslookup. Part of its results include the server that it's using.

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to get the first DNS SERVER (IP only) :

cat /etc/resolv.conf |grep -i nameserver|head -n1|cut -d ' ' -f2
  • cat will output DNS config
  • grep filters only nameserver
  • head will keep only the first row/instance
  • cut take the ip part of the row (second column with ' ' as separator)

To put DNS ip in an environment variable, you could use as follow:

export THEDNSSERVER=$(cat /etc/resolv.conf |grep -i nameserver|head -n1|cut -d ' ' -f2)
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The command

nmcli dev list iface | grep IP4

Replace with yours.

This will list all DNS servers(If you use more than one).

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