What is the NSlookup command?
The NSlookup command is still a popular tool with a command-line interface for DNS probing. You can use Nslookup commands for checking the domain name, its IP address, or different types of DNS records. It has been around for a long time as a part of the BIND software. It was dropped for a few versions, but it is back since the BIND 9.3.
Why should you learn to use NSlookup command?
On many devices – the Nslookup command tool is built-in on most Linux distros, macOS, Windows (10, 8, 7, etc.), ReactOS, and more.
Easy to use – it is easy to understand its interface and options.
Useful – it can give you basic information about a domain like IP address, nameservers, reverse lookup, and DNS records.
Free – it is already installed, and you don’t need to pay anything for using it.
How to use the NSlookup command?
To use the NSlookup command, you will need to open the software with the command-line interface you have on your computer. If you are using a Linux or macOS computer, open the Terminal application, and if you are on Windows, open the Command Prompt.
We will show you a series of NSlookup commands that you can easily write in your Terminal or Command Prompt and executive by pressing the Enter button.
You can modify the domain name or the IP address from the commands so they serve you for your needs.
Luckily, using the NSlookup command works the same on the different OSes so that you can use the following examples without the need for modifications.
IPv4 and IPv6 addresses of a domain.
The result will be the addresses of the domain name you searched.
This will lookup for the PTR record and see to whom the IP address belongs.
Check all the available DNS records at once.
nslookup -type=any icann.com
It will show a list of all DNS records.
Check a specific DNS record type – MX, NS, SOA, CNAME, A, or AAAA.
nslookup -type=mx icann.com
Use to see the mail exchanger records that show the incoming mail servers.
nslookup -type=ns icann.com
Use to see the nameserver of the domain name.
nslookup -type=soa icann.com
Use to see the start of authority.
nslookup -type=cname ftp.icann.com
Use to see the canonical name of the hostname you are checking
nslookup -type=a icann.com
Use to see the IPv4 address of the domain.
nslookup -type=aaaa icann.com
Use to see the IPv6 address of the domain.
Extend the waiting period for the response.
nslookup -timeout=50 icann.com
In this case, we have set 50 seconds waiting period, so that way, we have more time to receive an answer from the server.
Outdated – the support was already dropped once, so it might happen again.
A better alternative – there is software like host command and dig command that have more options for better DNS probing.
CLI – for most people, it is not a problem to deal with a command-line interface, but some of the newer network administrators might prefer a graphical interface.
Now you know what NSlookup command is and how to use it. The fact that it is almost on any OS is making it very useful. You can borrow a computer from anyone and check your domain, even if you don’t have your device close. This is what makes it stand out among the DNS probing commands.