[Community-Discuss] Yet more data base problems/inconsistancies

AFRINIC Communication comms at afrinic.net
Mon Nov 23 15:23:43 UTC 2020

Dear Community,

Following your inquiry regarding the existence of inconsistencies between reverse DNS delegation records within the WHOIS Database and the published RDNS zone files at ftp://ftp.afrinic.net/pub/zones/ directory, we have carried out further analysis and below are the findings.

1. This situation is a result of the presence of overlapping records in the WHOIS Database. The script that picks and publishes to the ftp picks only the reverse DNS domain covering the less specific prefix, for instance with reference to the example provided, the ftp file contains the record for 203.196.in-addr.arpa and not any other more specific reverse DNS records such as 35.203.196.in-addr.arpa

2. These overlapping records are historical and date back to the period between 2004 - 2007 and the whois at that time did not have the checks that guard against creation of these overlaps.

The issue regarding the existence of these overlaps in the WHOIS Database was raised by staff during the first database working group session at AIS-19 in Kampala, for the best way forward on resolving this and the consensus was that nothing should be done. The DBWG session report is available here:


Going forward, we intend to ensure that these overlapping records are cleared and no longer present inconsistencies. We shall therefore proceed as follows:

1.Initiate contact with the respective resource holders and assist them to fix their records accordingly.

2.For resource holders that are unreachable or unresponsive after a period of 90 days, we shall proceed to remove the more specific reverse DNS record from the WHOIS Database.

Please note that the issue of duplicate domain objects in the database was resolved last week.

On behalf of the IT and Engineering Team

> On 7 Nov 2020, at 06:24, Ronald F. Guilmette <rfg at tristatelogic.com> wrote:


> In message <A1A60763-83F7-4073-B20B-F2CAE4D23D72 at afrinic.net>,

> AFRINIC Communication <comms at afrinic.net> wrote:


>> We appreciate your concern around the duplicate domain object in the

>> AFRINIC whois Database. The same was raised and discussed on the DBWG

>> mailing list

>> <https://lists.afrinic.net/pipermail/dbwg/2020-September/000269.html>


> Just to be sure we are clear, there is not just one duplicate. By my

> count, there are 40 of them.


>> We have been working on this when it came to our attention and we hope

>> to have this resolved and deployed soon. We shall keep the community

>> updated as soon as this has been done.


>> The domain objects with the trailing dot were previously possible

>> according to RFC 1034. The AFRINIC whois Database however does not allow

>> the creation of this type of domains.


>> The objects in question cannot be queried via port 43 as the Whois

>> Database automatically removes any trailing dot from the object key.


>> Regarding the issue with the zone files, we are still investigating and

>> an update will be provided to the community as soon as it is resolved.


> Thank you for the update.


> The apparent differences between the data present in the zone files and

> the data present in the published WHOIS with respect to reverse DNS

> delegations are most certainly things that I will be happy to know

> the cause of, whenever that information becomes available.



> Regards,

> rfg


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