Are underscores no longer supported in Bind 9.4?

Kevin Darcy kcd at
Thu Mar 1 00:53:53 UTC 2007

Jake Morrisey wrote:
> Does bind 9.4 no longer support underscores (_) in the A records?
> I know I have these in many records in versions before 9.4.
> Here is the error that I am getting now.
> Feb 28 18:29:54 t141 named[8767]:
> bad owner name (check-names)
> As soon as I remove the A record with the underscore it in, everything is
> fine and the zone loads.
> Is this a new rule / RFC?

No, actually, it's a very *old*, arguably obsolete RFC (RFC 952).

BIND has flip-flopped over the years on whether it should be in the 
business of enforcing *hostname* (as opposed to DNS) standards. Recently 
the pendulum has swung back in the direction of "we'll enforce them", so 
you'll need to fiddle with your "check-names" settings if you have 
underscores in your names and you want to exorcise the spurious 
failures/warnings from BIND.

                                 - Kevin

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