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name Punditsdkoslkdosdkoskdo

DNS Not Resolving On Mac OS X

Some of my coworkers are having troubles on their Macs - DNS resolution does not work under Mac OS X. They're running Snow Leopard 10.6.8. They can use DNS in a Windows 7 virtual machine (VMware Fusion 3.1.3) running under OS X. The computers are 15" MacBook Pros, early 2011 model.

Things they've tried that have not worked:

  • turning airport on/off
  • rebooting
  • using wired connection instead wifi
  • deleting connection credentials and adding it again
  • turning off Mac firewall
  • using fixed static IP
  • manually setting DNS servers
  • restarting mDNSResponder
  • the fixes from this other question

EDIT response Martín's answer:

• Can you ping the DNS you want to use?

$ ping apple.com
ping: cannot resolve apple.com: Unknown host

• What is/are the IP address(es) of the DNS(s) you want to use?

This is a company DNS server that is given with DHCP, it works well for other people. I've also tried Google's and (which I found from GRC's DNS Benchmark to be the fastest).

• Have you tried using (google) or any of the OpenDNS or

It doesn't work, see Google Chrome output:

The server at www.apple.com can't be found, because the DNS lookup failed. DNS is the network service that translates a website's name to its Internet address. This error is most often caused by having no connection to the Internet or a misconfigured network. It can also be caused by an unresponsive DNS server or a firewall preventing Google Chrome from accessing the network.

• Can you ping those hosts?

$ ping
PING ( 56 data bytes 64 bytes from icmp_seq=0 ttl=58 time=3.925 ms

• creating a blank user

A guest user account was created, the DNS issue was still there when using the guest account.

• nslookup and dig both work fine

$ nslookup www.apple.com

Non-authoritative answer:
www.apple.com canonical name = www.isg-apple.com.akadns.net.
www.isg-apple.com.akadns.net canonical name = www.apple.com.edgekey.net.
www.apple.com.edgekey.net canonical name = e3191.c.akamaiedge.net.
Name: e3191.c.akamaiedge.net


$ dig @ www.apple.com
; <<>> DiG 9.6.0-APPLE-P2 <<>> @ www.apple.com
; (1 server found)
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 11298
;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 4, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0

;; QUESTION SECTION: ;www.apple.com.   IN A
www.apple.com.  1041 IN CNAME www.isg-apple.com.akadns.net.
www.isg-apple.com.akadns.net. 38 IN CNAME www.apple.com.edgekey.net.
www.apple.com.edgekey.net. 8794 IN CNAME e3191.c.akamaiedge.net.
e3191.c.akamaiedge.net. 17 IN A
;; Query time: 4 msec
;; WHEN: Tue Oct 4 09:25:28 2011
;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 158

• also flushing the DNS cache was done but it didn't help

sudo dscacheutil -flushcache
sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder


$ cat /etc/resolv.conf
# Mac OS X Notice
# This file is not used by the host name and address resolution
# or the DNS query routing mechanisms used by most processes on
# this Mac OS X system.
# This file is automatically generated.
domain {redacted}.com

I've experienced the same problem… And while restarting mDNSResponder does seem to "work", restarting it a couple of times every hour sort of sucks.

So, for now, I've "solved" the problem by running dnsmasq locally. To do that:

  • Build dnsmasq (download the tgz and make or brew install dnsmasq)
  • Put this in a dnsmasq.conf file:

  • Put this in a resolv.conf file that is in the same directory as the dnsmasq.conf file (nb: not /etc/resolv.conf):

  • Run dnsmasq with sudo dnsmasq --no-daemon --log-queries -C dnsmasq.conf. The output should look something like:

    dnsmasq: reading resolv.conf
    dnsmasq: using nameserver
    dnsmasq: using nameserver
    dnsmasq: using nameserver
    dnsmasq: read /etc/hosts - 6 addresses
  • Open Network Preferences and make sure that is the only DNS server (network preferences -> advanced -> DNS -> add

Things should begin to work nicely again.

Once things are working, you can run dnsmasq without the --no-daemon and --log-queries options, so it will start in the background and you don't need to keep a Terminal window open.

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Actually, I think you might want to use

scutil --dns

scutil -r hostname

These commands use the dynamic store in configd, as opposed to the flatfiles in /etc, which often are only read in single user mode and for non networked systems.

man scutil   # or

scutil --help 
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It turns out the solution was to bounce mDNSResponder:

sudo launchctl unload -w /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.mDNSResponder.plist
sudo launchctl load -w /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.mDNSResponder.plist

This was obtained by a different coworker from this Server Fault question.

OS X 10.10.0 – 10.10.3, Yosemite

Apparently, mDNSResponder doesn't exist in Yosemite (OS X 10.10). You can restart descoveryd instead to fix these issues.

sudo launchctl unload -w /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.discoveryd.plist
sudo launchctl load -w /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.discoveryd.plist

OS X 10.10.4+, Yosemite

In OSX 10.10.4 the mDNSResponder has been reintroduced. So use the first one will work again.

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