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RIPE NCC to Review Secondary DNS Service to Top-Level Domains (TLDs)

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3 June 2006 - Since its inception in 1992 the RIPE NCC has provided free of charge secondary DNS name service to any Top-Level Domain (TLD) that requests it. The membership of the RIPE NCC provides funding for this service because the stability of the DNS is important for everyone using the Internet.

In recent years the environment in which this service is provided has changed. Some TLDs have become quite large and many TLD operators have become stable and well-funded organisations in their own right. The operational requirements for secondary name servers have become more complex and costly, especially when considering increased load and recent Denial of Service (DoS) attacks on such servers. At the same time, commercial offerings of DNS server operations have become available.

In the light of these changes it is no longer appropriate to provide a free of charge secondary DNS service for all TLDs. The RIPE NCC membership is in favour of a careful and selective phasing out of this service. There are two reasons for this: firstly, the RIPE NCC should not operate in competition to multiple commercial offerings; secondly, the RIPE NCC membership should not pay for services which a TLD operator can easily afford based on the registration fees it receives. However, the RIPE NCC membership has also expressed that the stability of the DNS is of paramount concern and that it is willing to continue funding this service for smaller TLDs that would have difficulty obtaining, and paying for, commercial DNS services.

In order to implement the wishes of the membership, the RIPE NCC will contact TLD operators and discuss whether it would be appropriate to move their secondary DNS name service from the RIPE NCC to another provider. We ask all administrators of larger TLDs that receive secondary name service from the RIPE NCC to consider whether they can safely move this service to another provider. Rather than establish formal rules we appeal to all concerned to make responsible decisions, as is usual in the RIPE community. We will be happy to provide guidance and advice in each individual case. The RIPE NCC is not considering providing the secondary DNS name service for a fee since this would be in competition with commercial offerings. We will continue to provide the service free of charge to TLDs that need it. In all cases where a move of secondary DNS name service has been agreed, there will be ample time for TLD operators to make alternative arrangements. The stability of the DNS will be our foremost concern.

If you have any questions about this matter, please do not hesitate to contact Andrei Robachevsky, Chief Technical Officer, RIPE NCC.

 


About the RIPE NCC

The RIPE Network Coordination Centre (RIPE NCC) is an independent, not-for-profit membership organisation that provides services to members in the RIPE NCC service region. The membership consists mainly of Internet Service Providers (ISPs), telecommunication organisations and large corporations.

The RIPE NCC also provides services for the benefit of the Internet community at large including the development and maintenance of the RIPE Database, administrative support for the RIPE community and the development and coordination of member-supporting projects.