[Pdns-users] SOA and trailing/terminating dots (.)

Nick Williams nicholas at nicholaswilliams.net
Mon Mar 9 03:43:37 UTC 2015

PowerDNS's "Supported Record Types" page[1] says the following:

> Warning: Host names and the MNAME of a SOA records are NEVER terminated with a '.' in PowerDNS storage! If a trailing '.' is present it will inevitably cause problems, problems that may be hard to debug.

Here I'm particularly concerned with the part about SOA records. The instructions to never terminate the names in the SOA with a trailing dot (.) are counter to the instructions for every other DNS software and platform I can find, and counter to every "about" page/tutorial I can find for SOA records. Since the SOA doesn't appear to be processed in any way—but rather returned to the client unaltered (unless you have a serial of 0, which I don't)—it seems to me like the instructions for PowerDNS could be wrong. Perhaps most importantly, here's what I get when I query the SOA for the root servers from the root servers (notice the trailing dots):

$ dig @a.root-servers.net root-servers.net SOA
root-servers.net.	3600000	IN	SOA	a.root-servers.net. nstld.verisign-grs.com. 2014110500 14400 7200 1209600 3600000

Can someone please explain to me why PowerDNS says to leave off the trailing dot in the SOA records? Do I need to go correct the SOA records for all of my (many) zones to remove the trailing dots? Does this apply to both the primary DNS server in the SOA record as well as the host master email address in the SOA record?

What are some of the possible hard-to-debug problems this could cause?



[1] https://doc.powerdns.com/md/types/
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