How to measure the impact of enabling DNSSEC?

Petrov, Andrew Apetrov at
Fri Jan 25 23:40:44 UTC 2013

Thanks for sharing Lawrence.  One thing I wanted to ask the list is whether
it would make more sense to have
a KSK rollover a month before the domain expires?  What would be cons and

- Andrew.

Andrew Petrov
IT Security Engineering

-----Original Message-----
From: at
[ at] On Behalf Of
Lawrence K. Chen, P.Eng.
Sent: Friday, January 25, 2013 5:57 PM
To: bind-users at
Subject: Re: How to measure the impact of enabling DNSSEC?

----- Original Message -----
> On Wed, Jan 23, 2013 at 11:38 AM, Augie Schwer
> <augie.schwer at> wrote:
> >
> > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 2:32 PM, Mark Andrews <marka at>
> > wrote:
> >>
> >>
> >> In message
> >> <CA+fq9b-ym5w+NDXzZNDZWNnqk-V29S19eNB_myJBK-JRGBj9Wg at>,
> >> Augie
> >> Schwer wri
> >> tes:
> >> >
> >> > Would measuring the number of SERVFAIL entries in the
> >> > "query-errors"
> >> > category be a good indicator of what impact enabling DNSSEC has?
> >
> >
> >>
> >> DNSSEC is like wearing a seatbelt.  99.99% of the time it has no
> >> impact.  And like a seatbelt it can save you (reject spoofed
> >> answers)
> >> or hinder you (lookups fail due to the zone not being re-signed)
> >> on rare occasions.
> >
> >
> > That makes sense to me; I was looking for a way to quantify the
> > affect
> > enabling DNSSEC validation in a Bind server.
> >
> > Measuring SERVFAILs seems to be a good proxy to measure DNSSEC's
> > impact.
> >
> > Thanks for the reply.
> SERVFAILS are not rare and come from many things. Looking at the
> delta
> after enabling validation might be interesting, but in my experience
> you are unlikely to see any difference beyond the jitter that will
> always be there. Except for a couple of major goofs early on by a few
> large orgs (e.g. NASA), the impact of validation is about zip.
> --
> R. Kevin Oberman, Network Engineer
> E-mail: kob6558 at

I heard a presentation from NIST on the .gov DNSSEC deployment last
month...which was quite interesting on the kind of DNSSEC errors they been

For me, users will frequently show up complaining at certain times of the
year that they can't get to a .gov site from campus, but the site works fine
on their home computer.

Usually, when I dig through the logs, I will see its either they've stopped
signing their zone or they got the rollover wrong.

Of course, the users blame me for having DNSSEC validation on for our DNS
servers and not that the .gov site made an error.

Especially since they've waited to the last minute to submit a grant
proposal to some .gov and waiting for the .gov site to fix the problem would
probably take to long.

At least from the NIST presentation, I got information on how to contact
somebody about these problems since its usually hard to send email to the
listed RNAME.

OTOH, our domain went dark on August first of this year....because a non-DNS
administrator takes care of all the registry accounts (because we don't have
the authority to pay for registrations.)  And, even though the DS line I
sent her had the number for RSASHA256...she picked the wrong number on the
registry's site.  Not entirely sure...but got the impression that the
website form said "8 - RSASHA256" so it should've been obvious.  But, I've
never seen that page.  This was the first year that we have published our DS
with our registry.

Though things didn't break completely....because I maintain our record on
ISC's DLV.  And, resolvers set to use DLV could validate our domain.  Things
from my home were kind of weird, because I found out that one of my
broadband connections uses DLV while the other doesn't.

What was fun was that I had done a 2 month window for the KSK
rollover....But, the person that updates our registry record waited to the
end of July to finally update it.  I did the DLV update on July 1st.  Mainly
because the year before I had used a shorter window, and I forgot to update
DLV which I seem to recall required a bit of extra work to get it to
validate my domain with them again.  Plus I was doing a transition from
RSASHA1 to RSASHA256.  Not sure how I'm going to do rollover next year....I
debating going to a longer lifetime KSK.

Who: Lawrence K. Chen, P.Eng. - W0LKC - Senior Unix Systems Administrator
For: Enterprise Server Technologies (EST) -- & SafeZone Ally
Snail: Computing and Telecommunications Services (CTS)
Kansas State University, 109 East Stadium, Manhattan, KS 66506-3102
Phone: (785) 532-4916 - Fax: (785) 532-3515 - Email: lkchen at
Web: - Where: 11 Hale Library
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