About b.root-servers.net

b.root-servers.net provides Domain-Name Service for the DNS root zone as a public service to the Internet and to support research.

What is the Domain Name System?

The Domain Name System (DNS) provides names for things on the Internet like web pages (such as www.usc.edu, USC’s home page) and e-mail addresses (like the @usc.edu in example@usc.edu). Typically it maps these human-readable names into computer-relevant information like IP addresses and e-mail servers.

The DNS is hierarchical, with “com”, “edu”, country codes, and many other top-level domains (TLDs). Many organization use second-level domains (like usc.edu) or at public locations in other parts of DNS hierarchy (like ox.ac.uk for Oxford University in the United Kingdom).

The Domain Name System was created in 1983 by Paul Mockapetris at USC/ISI.

What is The DNS Root?

The DNS Root zone is the real top of the DNS hierarchy, above the Top-Level Domains com, edu, etc.

When a user wants to resolve a domain name (like www.usc.edu), they contact a recursive resolver, typically run by their ISP. Recursive resolvers cache and reuse prior lookups they have made, but every recursive resolver knows the DNS root zone and starts a query there if necessary.

USC/ISI recognizes IANA as the authoritative source of the root zone data (see our statement).

USC/ISI has run b.root-servers.net since the inception of the DNS root in 1987.

What and Where is b.root-servers.net?

B.root-servers.net is one of the 13 root DNS services operated by 12 different organizations.

Although B.root-servers.net is described as a “DNS server”, we actually run many physical computers in multiple physical locations.

A full current list of our sites is at the map at www.root-servers.org.

Our locations have included: