DNS Zone Transfer Commands

DNS Zone Transfer Commands

DNS is referred to as an internet directory, just like a phone directory. It helps in resolving domain names into corresponding IP addresses.

DNS zone transfer is a method of copy DNS-related databases across different DNS servers. It is a type of DNS transaction.  Vulnerability in DNS configuration led to the release of sensitive data by responding to global Asynchronous Transfer Full Range (AXFR) requests.

Author: All About Testing

Below are the Top 5 Commands to Test Zone Transfer. It is very easy and just a  matter of writing one or two-line commands to test DNS zone transfer.

Dig Command

  • stands for domain information groper
  • DNS lookup utility
  • Use for troubleshooting DNS problems
  • can also be used to test zone transfer
#dig +short ns <url>
#dig axfr <url> @<name-server>

Click Here for More Examples of Linux dig Command


Fierce Command

  • Perl script
  • Recon tool
  • pre-installed on Kali Linux
  • Can be used to test zone transfer
#fierce -dns <domain>

Host Command

  • DNS lookup tool
  • Convert names to IP addresses and vice versa
  • One line command used to test zone transfer
#host -t axfr <test-url> <name-server>

Nslookup Command

  • stands for “name server lookup”
  • DNS recon tool
  • Used by network administrators
  • preinstalled on Windows machines
>server <name-server>
>set type=any
>ls -d <test-url>

Click Here for Top 10 CMD commands used by Security Experts

Dnsrecon Command

  • DNS recon script preinstalled on Kali Linux
  • Able to check ns records for a zone transfer
#dnsrecon -d zonetransfer.me -t axfr

How to mitigate DNS zone transfer vulnerability?

To mitigate this vulnerability, DNS servers should be configured by trusted IP addresses.

You can also use transaction signatures (TSIG) for zone transfers. This helps in preventing IP spoofing efforts.


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