The best way to resolve hostnames

  • Hi all,

    Can someone help me explain the best way to resolve hostnames in a simple home lan?

    Can I best use DNS or WINS or NETBIOS?

    Since my knowledge is not that high I probably want to ask you to explain the setup process.



  • Banned

    1/ The NetBIOS crap has been deprecated since Windows 2000.
    2/ It does not work across different network segments without a WINS proxy.
    3/ It's M$ specific junk.

    Hopefully that answers your question.

  • Hi doktornotor,

    I understand that you would go with DNS.

    Do I need to setup a DNS server on pfsense?
    Can it conflict with the DNS that I use with my internet provider?

    Thanks very much,


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    in a normal setup with pfsense resolve of hostnames should be pretty much automatic..

    your machine lets call it hosta gets dhcp IP from pfsense dhcp server, it also hands it a domain you setup like mydomain.tld…  Now when your box queries for hosta it really should be doing a query for hosta.mydomain.tld

    and even if it didn't pfsense will register hosta all by itself and if you ask for just hosta. you should get an answer.. now if your pointing your clients directly to some outside dns like google or your isp..  Then no they would not have any clue to your local hosts.

    Point to pfsense as  your dns and you should be fine in resolving host names.  Pfsense will either look up for you from the roots or you can set it to forward to your isp or any other outside dns.

    Also windows still broadcasts for names anyway.. So as long as machines are on same network segment/vlan/broadcast domain and they are limited in answering then sure a broadcast would work as well.  But dns is the preferred way to resolve hosts, and you should really get out of the bad habit of just using hostname and use a fqdn hostname.domain.tld

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