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The PowerDNS open-source DNS server software offers high performance with very low memory requirements. cPanel's PowerDNS implementation reads DNS data from the BIND files and stores DNSSEC data in a SQLite database. This makes cPanel's PowerDNS compatible with most of cPanel's DNS Management tools.


System files and other online sources may refer to PowerDNS as pdns.

Install PowerDNS


In cPanel & WHM version 84 and later, the system installs PowerDNS by default 

To install PowerDNS via WHM's Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection), perform the following steps: 

  1. Navigate to WHM's Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home  >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection).
  2. Select PowerDNS.
  3. Click Save.

PowerDNS version

To check your server's PowerDNS version, run the WHM API 1 installed_versions function. The function's output contains the powerdns return, which displays the server's currently-installed PowerDNS version. 


PowerDNS allows you to use DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC) with your domains' DNS records. DNSSEC adds a layer of security to your domains' DNS records. DNSSEC uses digital signatures and cryptographic keys to validate the DNS responses' authenticity. These digital signatures protect clients from various forms of attack, such as Spoofing or a Man-in-the-Middle attack.

To enable DNSSEC, follow the directions in our Zone Editor documentation.


  • DNSSEC may cause slow response times for backups, transfers and restores, and dnsadmin actions. This is because DNSSEC increases the processor load on these features. If you use DNS clustering and more than 10,000 domains exist in your DNS cluster, we recommend that you not enable DNSSEC on those servers.
  • This feature only appears in cPanel's Zone Editor interface (cPanel >> Home >> Domains >> Zone Editor) if your hosting provider installs PowerDNS in WHM's Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection).

PowerDNS's firewall rules

PowerDNS includes a script to apply firewall rules to ensure only the root and named users have access to the Webserver API port. The default port is the 8063 port. However, you can change the port in the /etc/pdns/pdns.conf file.

You can apply or remove these firewall rules with the /usr/local/cpanel/3rdparty/scripts/cpanel_pdns_webserver_firewall script. The PowerDNS RPM includes this script.

Troubleshoot PowerDNS

To troubleshoot PowerDNS further, check the /var/log/messages error log.

Additional documentation

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