Mac/Windows – Dynamic DNS

I once had to deal with Macs that weren’t properly updating their DNS A and PTR records. The effect of which was that some Macs were getting the wrong hostname and that was causing issues with the Active Directory plug-in. At the time DNS was located on a Windows Domain Controller, and DHCP was coming from a Cisco router. I fixed the problem by handing the DHCP responsibility to the DC and configuring it to update DNS A and PTR records on behalf of the clients. If you’re in a similar situation and can have a Windows server handle DHCP; the options needed to configure this are in the properties on the DHCP scope underneath the DNS tab:

  • Tick “Enable DNS dynamic updates according to the settings below:”
    • Always dynamically update DNS A and PTR records
  • Tick “Discard A and PTR records when lease is deleted”
  • Tick “Dynamically update DNS A and PTR records for DHCP clients that do not request updates (for example, clients running Windows NT 4.0)”

Once this is done you may want to consider purging the current DNS A and PTR records for the DHCP range so that you’re starting fresh.

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