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PTR record: Why should you care about it?

PTR record is one of the critical DNS record types that you should know. It is one of the few that warrants special attention. Why, we will see in this article. 

DNS record – what does it mean?

To start, let’s see what precisely the DNS records are. They are nothing more than text instructions. Its primary function is to instruct domain name servers on managing traffic to your domains and subdomains. In addition, the network for websites is the entire Internet. So, a DNS record is a single mapping that connects an IP address to a resource in DNS. They are organized into DNS zones and kept on nameservers.

What is a PTR record?

PTR records, also known as Pointer records, are a DNS record that links an IP address to a domain name. It is proof that the IP address being checked is indeed tied to the domain name and that it is not a hoax. So, it allows you to check and verify that the IP address you’re using belongs to the domain name. Furthermore, it demonstrates that it is not a hoax. Thanks to the Pointer record, verifying distinct pieces or services, such as a mail server, is simple.

Structure

The structure of the PTR record is simple and easy to understand. Here is an example how what it could look like:

  • TYPE: PTR record – It denotes the DNS record type. 
  • Host: 78.159.213.32 – You must provide the host’s IP address in this field. An IPV4 or IPv6 address is possible.
  • POINTS TO: example.com – You can use this field to show the domain name.
  • TTL: 1h – You set the TTL or time-to-live value here.

How to create a PTR record?

It’s simple to set up a DNS Pointer record. So, let’s break it down into steps.

  1. It would be best if you first built a Master Reverse Zone.

In a Master Reverse Zone, the PTR record can exist. However, it’s important to note that it shouldn’t be used in a conventional Master zone. The IP address in the Master Reverse Zone should always be in reverse order. For example, if the IP address is 32.213.159.78., you should enter it as 78.159.213.32. Regardless of whether it’s an IPv4 or IPv6 address, the same rule applies.

  1. The next step is to generate the Pointer record.

When adding the PTR record, you’ll also have to input it backward. You should have a matching A or AAAA record for each Pointer record. As a result, make sure to double-check!

  1. Finally, add the NS records.

NS records pointing to your nameservers should be added to the IP provider. Your Reverse DNS zone is now complete!

Why is it important to use rDNS service?

PTR record vs. A record

When we compare the A and PTR records, we’ll see that they’re polar opposites. This is because the A record links a domain name to an IP address (IPv4). On the other hand, the PTR record is used to resolve an IP address (IPv4 or IPv6) to a domain name.

It’s also worth noting that the A and PTR records are located in separate DNS zones. The A record should be added to a Primary (Master) DNS zone, but the PTR record can only exist in a Master Reverse DNS zone and operate.

Conclusion

By and large, the PTR is a really fundamental DNS record that you have to know. Start using it for your domain to lessen the number of bounce emails. It is not difficult. You could just follow the steps above. Good luck!

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