Whois is an intelligent — pure Ruby — WHOIS client and parser.
Donate a coffee
Whois is free software, but it requires a lot of coffee to write, test, and distribute it. You can support the development by donating a coffee.
- Ability to lookup WHOIS record for IPv4, IPv6, TLDs, and ICANN new gTLDs
- Ability to parse WHOIS responses (via the
- Flexible and extensible interface (e.g. You can define custom servers on the fly)
- Object oriented design, featuring 10 different design patterns
- Pure Ruby library, without any external dependency other than Ruby itself
- Successfully tested against different Ruby implementations, including Ruby and JRuby
Whois and Whois parser
Starting from version 4, WHOIS parser component is available in a separate repository called whois-parser, and released as a separate gem called
This repository contains the core whois library, that includes the WHOIS client, the server definitions and all the features required to perform WHOIS queries and obtain the WHOIS record.
- Ruby >= 2.0.0
For older versions of Ruby, see the CHANGELOG.
You can install the gem manually:
$ gem install whois
Or use Bundler and define it as a dependency in your
To use the WHOIS parser component you need to install the
$ gem install whois-parser
whois-parser gem already depends on the
whois gem. If you install
whois will be installed as well and it will also be automatically required when you
If you are upgrading to 4.0, see 4.0-Upgrade.md.
Note. This section covers only the essentials for getting started with the Whois library. The documentation provides a more accurate explanation including tutorials, more examples and technical details about the client/server/record/parser architecture.
Querying a WHOIS
Whois provides the ability to get WHOIS information for TLD, domain names, IPv4 and IPv6 addresses. The client is smart enough to guess the best WHOIS server according to given query, send the request and return the response.
Check out the following examples:
# Domain WHOIS whois = Whois::Client.new whois.lookup("google.com") # => #<Whois::Record> # TLD WHOIS whois = Whois::Client.new whois.lookup(".com") # => #<Whois::Record> # IPv4 WHOIS whois = Whois::Client.new whois.lookup("184.108.40.206") # => #<Whois::Record> # IPv6 WHOIS whois = Whois::Client.new whois.lookup("2001:db8::1428:57ab") # => #<Whois::Record>
The query method is stateless. For this reason, you can safely re-use the same client instance for multiple queries.
whois = Whois::Client.new whois.lookup("google.com") whois.lookup(".com") whois.lookup("220.127.116.11") whois.lookup("2001:db8::1428:57ab") whois.lookup("google.it")
If you just need a WHOIS response and you don't care about a full control of the WHOIS client, the
Whois module provides an all-in-one method called
Whois.whois. This is the simplest way to send a WHOIS request.
Whois.whois("google.com") # => #<Whois::Record>
Did I mention you can even use blocks?
Whois::Client.new do |w| w.lookup("google.com") w.lookup(".com") w.lookup("18.104.22.168") w.lookup("2001:db8::1428:57ab") w.lookup("google.it") end
Consuming the Record
Any WHOIS query returns a
Whois::Record. This object looks like a String, but it's way more powerful.
Whois::Record encapsulates a WHOIS record and provides the ability to parse the WHOIS response programmatically, when the
whois-parser gem is installed and loaded.
require 'whois-parser' record = Whois.whois("google.it") # => #<Whois::Record> parser = record.parser # => #<Whois::Parser> parser.available? # => false parser.registered? # => true parser.created_on # => Fri Dec 10 00:00:00 +0100 1999 tech = parser.technical_contact # => #<Whois::Record::Contact> tech.id # => "TS7016-ITNIC" tech.name # => "Technical Services" parser.nameservers.each do |nameserver| puts nameserver end
This feature is made possible by the Whois record parsers. Unfortunately, due to the lack of a global standard, each WHOIS server requires a specific parser. For this reason, the library doesn't support all existing WHOIS servers.
If you create a new parser, please consider releasing it to the public so that it can be included in a next version.
By default, each query run though the client has a timeout value of 5 seconds. If the execution exceeds timeout limit, the client raises a
Of course, you can customize the timeout value setting a different value. If timeout is
nil, the client will until the response is sent back from the server or the process is killed. Don't disable the timeout unless you really know you are doing!
whois = Whois::Client.new(:timeout => 10) whois.timeout # => 10 whois.timeout = 5 whois.timeout # => 5 whois.lookup("google.com")
Direct questions and discussions to Stack Overflow.
Pull requests are very welcome! Please include spec and/or feature coverage for every patch, and create a topic branch for every separate change you make.
Report issues or feature requests to GitHub Issues.
Whois uses Semantic Versioning 2.0.0
Copyright (c) 2009-2016 Simone Carletti. This is Free Software distributed under the MIT license.