I'm trying to complete the setup of my Bind9 DNS server.

Both Systems are running Debian Stretch. The serving machine ( is a VM host and the client machine ( is its virtual guest.

The server seems to be running without complaint, but I'm getting some confusing results. The host command resolves as I'd hoped:

$ host wiles.local
wiles.local has address

However I'm unable to reference the system by hostname anywhere else:

$ ssh wiles.local
ssh: Could not resolve hostname wiles.local: Name or service not known

Of course, I can ssh into the system by referencing the IP explicitly without issue.

The client machine does seem to be looking in the right place for its DNS:

$ nslookup google.com

Non-authoritative answer:
Name:   google.com

I'm hoping someone can help me figure out what the distinction here is and what I can do to fix the issue.

I'll give what relevant config information I know:

On the serving system:


zone "wiles.local" {
        type master;
        file "/etc/bind/db.wiles.local";


$TTL    86400
@       IN      SOA     wiles.local. root.localhost. (
                              1         ; Serial
                         604800         ; Refresh
                          86400         ; Retry
                        2419200         ; Expire
                          86400 )       ; Negative Cache TTL
        IN      A
@       IN      NS      localhost.
www     IN      A

On the connecting system:


auto lo enp0s3
iface lo inet loopback

iface enp0s3 inet static

And finally:


# Dynamic resolv.conf(5) file for glibc resolver(3) generated by resolvconf(8)

A note on the last file: I had to disobey the loud warnings and write that line in by hand. Until having done that, this system would not resolve host names for ANY service, external or internal. I believe this to be a separate issue, that was fixed by installing and running resolvconf, but I mention it just in case the problems are related.

  • 2
    Please don't use .local as your own private TLD. It is reserved for Multicast DNS. Commented Apr 10, 2018 at 5:01
  • 1
    Check grep ^hosts: /etc/nsswitch.conf and see askubuntu.com/questions/843943/… Note host nslookup dig use DNS directly and do NOT use nsslib like normal programs so you cannot rely on them to give the same results. Commented Apr 10, 2018 at 8:27
  • Check this out
    – kemotep
    Commented Apr 10, 2018 at 13:28
  • @dave_thompson_085 I get the following output: files mdns4_minimal [NOTFOUND=return] dns myhostname This "myhostname" tag looks like it should be replaced with something else. Commented Apr 10, 2018 at 21:47
  • @JohanMyréen changing from TLD .local to .com did the trick, thanks! Please post this as the answer. Commented Apr 10, 2018 at 21:55

1 Answer 1


As pointed out in the comments by Johan Myréen, my issue appeared to be caused by the use of a reserved TLD. Since I'm not making use of mDNS, switching from .local to .com allowed my name resolutions to work properly.

  • that may cause unknown issues down the road as well. I use .homenet ...
    – ivanivan
    Commented Apr 16, 2018 at 1:36
  • I've reserved the domain from a registrar. That should make sure I don't run into any issues going forward as long as I still own it, right? Commented Apr 16, 2018 at 1:38

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