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Notes on configuring dnsmasq as packaged for Debian. (1) To configure dnsmasq edit /etc/dnsmasq.conf. The file is well commented; see also the dnsmasq.8 man page for explanation of the options. The file /etc/default/dnsmasq also exists but it shouldn't need to be touched in most cases. To set up DHCP options you might need to refer to a copy of RFC 2132. This is available on Debian systems in the package doc-rfc-std as the file /usr/share/doc/RFC/draft-standard/rfc2132.txt.gz . (2) Installing the dnsmasq package also creates the directory /etc/dnsmasq.d which is searched by dnsmasq for configuration file fragments. This behaviour can be disabled by editing /etc/default/dnsmasq. (3) If the Debian resolvconf package is installed then, regardless of what interface configuration daemons are employed, the list of nameservers to which dnsmasq should forward queries can be found in /var/run/dnsmasq/resolv.conf; also, 127.0.0.1 is listed as the first nameserver address in /etc/resolv.conf. This works using the default configurations of resolvconf and dnsmasq. (4) In the absence of resolvconf, if you are using dhcpcd then dnsmasq should read the list of nameservers from the automatically generated file /etc/dhcpc/resolv.conf. You should list 127.0.0.1 as the first nameserver address in /etc/resolv.conf. (5) In the absence of resolvconf, if you are using pppd then dnsmasq should read the list of nameservers from the automatically generated file /etc/ppp/resolv.conf. You should list 127.0.0.1 as the first nameserver address in /etc/resolv.conf. (6) In the absence of resolvconf, dns-nameservers lines in /etc/network/interfaces are ignored. If you do do not use resolvconf, list 127.0.0.1 as the first nameserver address in /etc/resolv.conf and configure your nameservers using "server=<IP-address>" lines in /etc/dnsmasq.conf. (7) If you run multiple DNS servers on a single machine, each listening on a different interface, then it is necessary to use the bind-interfaces option by uncommenting "bind-interfaces" in /etc/dnsmasq.conf. This option stops dnsmasq from binding the wildcard address and allows servers listening on port 53 on interfaces not in use by dnsmasq to work. The Debian libvirt package will add a configuration file in /etc/dnsmasq.d which does this so that the "system" dnsmasq and "private" dnsmasq instances started by libvirt do not clash. (8) The following options are supported in DEB_BUILD_OPTIONS noopt : compile without optimisation. nostrip : don't remove symbols from binary. nodocs : omit documentation. notftp : omit TFTP support. nodhcp : omit DHCP support. nodhcp6 : omit DHCPv6 support. noscript : omit lease-change script support. use_lua : provide support for lease-change scripts written in Lua. noipv6 : omit IPv6 support. nodbus : omit DBus support. noconntrack : omit connection tracking support. nortc : compile alternate mode suitable for systems without an RTC. noi18n : omit translations and internationalisation support. noidn : omit international domain name support, must be combined with noi18n to be effective. (9) Dnsmasq comes as three packages - dnsmasq-utils, dnsmasq-base and dnsmasq. Dnsmasq-base provides the dnsmasq executable and documentation (including this file). Dnsmasq, which depends on dnsmasq-base, provides the init script and configuration infrastructure. This file assumes that both are installed. It is possible to install only dnsmasq-base and use dnsmasq as a non-"system" daemon. Libvirt, for instance, does this. Dnsmasq-utils provides the utilities dhcp_release and dhcp_lease_time.