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Thread: Newbie question about leopard server and domains/dns etc

  1. #1

    Member Since
    Aug 28, 2004
    Newbie question about leopard server and domains/dns etc
    Hey everyone,

    I have a small business and I'm about to start using Leopard Server but one thing confuses me and that's host name and so on. Here's my situation, my company name is invution, our website is which is hosted elsewhere. At the moment, we just have normal DSL internet without static IP but eventually will be getting static IP in the next month or so.

    When I set up Leopard Server, it asks for TCP/IP settings. My internet network uses as the address, so I gave the server a static IP of It then says enter the dns name to identify to the network, and shows "". This is where I get confused, I was going to call my server Darwin to make it easier after the kernel, but what would I put in here? Can I make something up or should this relate to my ISP? I was thinking darwin.invution but is confusing me because my server has nothing to do with For now I used darwin.invution

    If I load Server Admin, it says server address darwin.local and I can log on. This is where I get confused though, because using this method, if I make a username like John Smith, it says email address johnsmith@darwin.invution and iChat address johnsmith@darwin.invution.

    That's fine and all, but I'm completely lost here because on a networked Mac, if I say now click server preferences, it says log on to the server. If I type darwin.invution like on the actual server, it says server not found. But if I say it connects no problem. This is where I get completely lost as I know I must be missing something. Can anyone assist?

  2. #2

    MacsWork's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 22, 2005
    Closer than you think.
    First of all,....

    15.x.x.x addressing is not a good idea. There is a reason private ip addressing exists. If you have an internal DNS server which lives on and serves a 15.x.x.x network, it will never resolve internet ip's which are 15.x.x.x. Let's say or was really Your computers on your LAN that utilize the internal DNS server (your os x server) would never resolve the website.

    10.x 172.x and 192.x are private IP networks. Rule #1.


    Domain is a funny word. Technically .com is the domain. invution is a sub domain of the .com domain. On an internal network you have more freedom since you control the DNS. You could call your server/network anything as long as the DNS is configured correctly. The reason you can't resolve darwin.invution is because your internal DNS settings on the client are wrong and/or your server is not configured correctly for providing DNS.

    You've created a new .invution domain that only your server knows about.

    Configure the server to give out DNS to your internal network will solve the resolution of darwin.invution. The clients will also need as their DNS server in IP settings. However I'd suggest changing to 10. or 172. or 192. networks.

    Hope you get something out of this,...

  3. #3

    Member Since
    Aug 28, 2004
    Hey thank you so much that makes sense, I didn't realize that 15.0.0 wasn't a private domain I always thought it was, I have no problem using 10.

    That makes a lot more sense now, just a few more questions. I had used darwin.invution because I thought might have users try to connect to out on the internet and not my server, is that the case? I'd prefer .com to keep things consistent but not sure what's best to use.

    So as I understand it, I would set my router at for example, with the leopard server lets say, with the host darwin.invution or based on your feedback. Then on lets say a PC on my network, I could set it up as with DNS server and then if I tried using jabber or mail or whatever with server darwin.invution or because the dns server is my leopard server, it would know what darwin.invution means? How would that work for if a user wanted to go to say in Safari, if the clients dns server is would leopard server then tell it what is?

    The issue with the above if correct is that when a user takes their laptop home, they have to change their settings since DHCP won't work if leopard server is another unit on my network. If I didn't want that, would I need 2 NIC's in the server and then connect the clients to a switch conencted to one of the NIC's so that leopard server provides DHCP?

    Thanks SO much!

  4. #4

    MacsWork's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 22, 2005
    Closer than you think.
    2,159 is fine for the router. I typically reserve 2-20 for servers, switches, NAS boxes and misc networking devices. I usually leave 21-40 for printers and such and then use the server to provide DHCP to the rest of the network 50-200.

    The server running DNS will try to resolve everything itself until it can't. Then it will forward DNS request to the internet's Root DNS Servers. That is how and all external requests are handled. They are the master DNS servers that "RUN THE INTERNET!". When you registered they now handle the requests globally. Without internal DNS people usually use the servers provided by their ISP's. Your ISP will also cache requests for their customers for the sake of load and speed.

    The .com domains are usually reserved external (internet) domains. The .local domain typically is used for internal domain. So darwin.invution.local would be a typical internal scenario. Darwin being the servers machine name invution being the subdomain .local being the domain type.

    The server will provide the invution.local domain or anything on the LAN with invution.local as the DNS server with name resolution. People get confused because Bonjour runs on all Macs so the sidebar in the Finder gets populated because of this without DNS.

    Because you're using DHCP internally they can use DHCP at home or on the road. If you want them to connect to the server at work they will need to connect to the internet address of the office. This can be a static ip provided by your ISP or a registered domain name for your static IP like Or if you have a dynamic IP from your ISP, DYNDNS will get you connected with a free account.

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