How To Force DNS To Update on Server 2012 R2?

If you are managing a website or server, DNS is a critical component that enables users to access your online content. Without properly functioning DNS, users will not be able to access your website or server, leading to a potential loss of business and reputation. However, DNS updates can take time, and in some cases, you may need to force a DNS update to ensure that your website or server is accessible.

For those managing a Server 2012 R2, the process of forcing a DNS update may seem daunting. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to force DNS to update on Server 2012 R2. We will also discuss why forcing a DNS update is important, common problems that may arise, and tips for ensuring a successful update.

Whether you are a seasoned IT professional or a beginner, this article will provide you with the knowledge and tools necessary to force a DNS update on your Server 2012 R2. Keep reading to learn more.

What is DNS?

DNS stands for Domain Name System. It is a system that translates domain names, such as, into IP addresses, which are used to identify and locate computer systems and resources on the Internet. DNS is essentially the phonebook of the Internet, matching human-readable names to machine-readable numbers.

Without DNS, we would have to remember the IP addresses of every website we want to visit, which would be a daunting task. DNS provides a more user-friendly way to access websites and resources on the Internet.

When you type a domain name into your web browser, your computer sends a request to a DNS server to resolve the domain name into an IP address. The DNS server then responds with the IP address, which your computer uses to connect to the website or resource you requested.

There are many DNS servers on the Internet, each of which maintains a database of domain names and their associated IP addresses. When a DNS server receives a request to resolve a domain name, it checks its database and returns the appropriate IP address.

Domain Name System

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a hierarchical and decentralized naming system for computers, services, or other resources connected to the internet or a private network. It maps domain names, which are easier to remember, to IP addresses, which are unique identifiers for network devices.

Root DNS serverThe top-level server that stores information about all top-level, .org, .net, etc.
Top-level domain serverStores information about the domain names directly below the root, .edu, .gov, etc.
Authoritative DNS serverStores information about domain names for a specific,, etc.

When a user types a domain name in their web browser, the browser sends a DNS query to a DNS resolver, which starts the process of translating the domain name to an IP address. The resolver sends a query to the root DNS server, which directs it to the top-level domain server for the domain name. The top-level domain server directs the resolver to the authoritative DNS server for the domain name, which returns the IP address to the resolver.

DNS is a critical component of the internet infrastructure, enabling users to access websites and other resources by domain names rather than IP addresses. Without DNS, users would need to remember the IP addresses of all the resources they want to access, which would be difficult and impractical.

Understanding how DNS works is important for troubleshooting network issues, configuring network devices, and managing domain names for websites and other resources.

How DNS Works

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a distributed system that allows humans to access websites using domain names, while computers use IP addresses to locate the websites. DNS is composed of multiple servers that work together to ensure that domain names are translated into IP addresses correctly.

DNS Resolution is the process by which a computer resolves a domain name into an IP address. When a user types a domain name into a web browser, the browser sends a request to the local DNS resolver, which then forwards the request to a root DNS server. The root DNS server then directs the request to the appropriate top-level domain server, which ultimately returns the IP address to the local DNS resolver, allowing the user to connect to the desired website.

DNS Records contain information about a domain name, such as its associated IP address, and are stored on DNS servers. There are several types of DNS records, including A records (which map a domain name to an IP address), MX records (which specify the mail server responsible for accepting email messages on behalf of a domain), and CNAME records (which allow a domain name to point to another domain name).

DNS Caching is the process by which DNS servers store recently resolved domain names and their associated IP addresses for a period of time. This helps to speed up subsequent DNS lookups, as the information can be retrieved from the cache rather than having to be obtained from the remote DNS server again.

Understanding how DNS works is essential for managing a server and troubleshooting DNS issues. In the following sections, we will discuss the importance of forcing DNS to update, when to do it, and how to do it on Server 2012 R2.

Why is it Important to Force DNS to Update?

Ensuring accuracy: One of the primary reasons for forcing DNS to update is to ensure the accuracy of domain name resolution. DNS cache can become outdated, leading to errors when trying to connect to a website or service.

Minimizing downtime: By forcing DNS to update, you can minimize downtime and ensure that your website or service remains available to users. An updated DNS cache can prevent potential connectivity issues and improve overall performance.

Resolving DNS issues: Sometimes, a DNS issue can be resolved by simply updating the cache. By forcing DNS to update, you can troubleshoot and fix connectivity problems quickly and efficiently.

Improved security: DNS cache poisoning attacks can be mitigated by forcing DNS to update regularly. When a DNS cache becomes outdated, it can become vulnerable to malicious attacks that can redirect users to fake websites or services. By updating the cache, you can reduce the risk of these attacks and improve the security of your network.

Resolve DNS Issues Quickly

Unexpected issues can arise with DNS that can impact user access to websites or other services. If DNS is not updated, users may encounter slow connection speeds, time-outs, or error messages.

For businesses, DNS resolution issues can have a direct impact on productivity and revenue, particularly if web-based applications are used for business operations.

Forcing DNS to update can quickly resolve these issues and ensure users are able to access websites and other resources as needed. It can also help prevent future issues by ensuring DNS is accurate and up-to-date.

By regularly forcing DNS to update, businesses can minimize the risk of downtime caused by DNS issues and improve the overall user experience for employees and customers.

Ensure Website Availability

Website traffic: When a DNS server fails to update, it can lead to website downtime, making it unavailable to users. This can affect the website traffic and can cause visitors to leave the site.

Search engine rankings: Unavailability of website due to DNS issues can have a negative impact on search engine rankings. This can result in lower website traffic and decreased revenue.

Customer satisfaction: For businesses, it’s important to keep their customers happy by ensuring that their website is available and accessible. A DNS failure can cause customer dissatisfaction and lost revenue.

Brand reputation: Consistent website availability is essential for building and maintaining a strong brand reputation. DNS issues can damage the brand’s reputation and trust with customers.

Improve Website Performance

DNS caching: By forcing DNS to update, you can ensure that your website visitors are not served outdated DNS information, which can result in slow website performance or even errors.

Reduced latency: With DNS caching, DNS queries are resolved faster, resulting in reduced latency and improved website performance. This is particularly important for websites that serve a large number of visitors.

Improved SEO: A fast-loading website improves user experience, which can lead to better search engine rankings. By ensuring that your website’s DNS information is up-to-date, you can improve website performance and ultimately your SEO.

When Should You Force DNS to Update?

Changes to DNS Records: If you have made changes to your DNS records, you may need to force the DNS to update. This is especially important if you are changing the IP address of your website.

Website is Not Accessible: If your website is not accessible, it could be due to DNS issues. In such cases, forcing the DNS to update can help resolve the issue quickly.

Website is Slow: If your website is slow to load, it could be due to DNS issues. Forcing the DNS to update can improve website performance and reduce load times.

Server Migration: If you have recently migrated your website to a new server, you may need to force the DNS to update to ensure that your website is accessible on the new server.

If you are facing any of the above issues, you should consider forcing the DNS to update. Doing so can help ensure that your website is accessible, performant, and available to your visitors. In the next section, we will discuss how you can force DNS to update on Server 2012 R2.

After Changing DNS Records

DNS changes may take time: After making changes to DNS records, it may take some time for the changes to propagate throughout the internet. This delay is called DNS propagation and can take several hours or even up to 48 hours to complete.

Force DNS update: If you need to update your DNS records urgently, you can force the update by clearing your DNS cache. This will force your computer to look up the DNS records again and update them if necessary.

Verify DNS changes: After updating your DNS records, it’s important to verify that the changes have been made correctly. You can use online tools like DNS Checker to verify that the changes have propagated and are working as intended.

Monitor DNS performance: Monitoring DNS performance can help you detect issues before they impact your website or online services. You can use tools like DNS Perf to measure the response time of your DNS servers and identify any potential issues.

Step-by-Step Guide to Force DNS to Update on Server 2012 R2

If you have recently changed your DNS settings, it is important to force DNS to update to ensure that the changes take effect. Here is a step-by-step guide to force DNS to update on Server 2012 R2:

Step 1: Open DNS Manager
Open the DNS Manager by going to Start, Administrative Tools, and then DNS.

Step 2: Clear the Cache
Right-click on your server name and select Clear Cache. This will remove any cached DNS entries that may be interfering with the update.

Step 3: Refresh the Zone
Right-click on the zone that you want to update and select Refresh. This will force the server to reload the zone information from the primary server.

Step 4: Update the Server
Right-click on your server name and select Update Server Data Files. This will update the server with the latest DNS information.

By following these steps, you can force DNS to update on Server 2012 R2 and ensure that any changes to your DNS settings take effect immediately.

Open Command Prompt as Administrator

To force DNS to update on Server 2012 R2, the first step is to open the Command Prompt as an Administrator. This can be done by clicking on the Windows Start button and searching for “Command Prompt” in the search bar. Right-click on “Command Prompt” and select “Run as Administrator.”

Alternatively, you can press the Windows key + X on your keyboard and select “Command Prompt (Admin)” from the menu that appears. If prompted to allow changes to your device, select “Yes.”

Opening the Command Prompt as an Administrator gives you the necessary permissions to execute the commands required to force DNS to update.

Flush DNS Cache

DNS cache is a temporary storage location for recently accessed DNS information. Flushing the DNS cache can resolve issues with incorrect or outdated information. Here are three methods to flush the DNS cache on a Windows server 2012 R2:

  1. Command Prompt: Open Command Prompt as an administrator and type the command “ipconfig /flushdns” and press Enter.
  2. PowerShell: Open PowerShell as an administrator and type the command “Clear-DnsClientCache” and press Enter.
  3. Services: Open the Services console, locate the DNS Client service, right-click it, and select Restart.

After flushing the DNS cache, wait a few minutes for the cache to rebuild. This process may take longer if the server has a high DNS traffic volume or if there are numerous DNS queries from clients.

Flushing the DNS cache is a useful troubleshooting step for resolving DNS-related issues, including website accessibility problems and slow DNS resolution. Regularly flushing the DNS cache can also help to ensure optimal performance and avoid potential conflicts.

Common Problems When Forcing DNS to Update

Propagation Delays: Even after updating DNS records, it may take some time for the changes to propagate through the DNS system. This can result in users experiencing the old website until the changes fully propagate.

Caching Issues: Browsers and internet service providers may cache DNS records, resulting in users still seeing the old website even after updating DNS records. Clearing browser caches and flushing DNS caches can help resolve this issue.

Incorrect Record Changes: If incorrect changes are made to DNS records, it can cause website downtime or other issues. Always double-check the changes before applying them to avoid potential problems.

Propagation Delay

Propagation delay is one of the most common problems when forcing DNS to update. It refers to the time it takes for DNS changes to propagate across all DNS servers and networks, which can sometimes take up to 48 hours.

The best way to minimize propagation delay is to set a low TTL (time-to-live) value for your DNS records before making any changes. This will force DNS servers to check for updates more frequently, reducing the propagation delay.

If you’ve already made changes to your DNS records and are experiencing propagation delay, there’s unfortunately not much you can do except wait. You can try clearing your local DNS cache, but this will only speed up the process for your computer and not for others accessing your website.

Incomplete DNS Record Transfer

DNS zone transfer failure can occur when there is a problem with the transfer of DNS records between primary and secondary DNS servers. The transfer of DNS records could fail due to many reasons, such as network issues or server misconfigurations.

If DNS zone transfer fails, it can cause incomplete DNS record transfer. The incomplete DNS record transfer could lead to DNS resolution problems and cause issues with accessing websites or other network resources.

To avoid incomplete DNS record transfer, it is crucial to ensure that the DNS zone transfer process is properly configured and tested. It is also recommended to use DNSSEC to secure the DNS zone transfer process and ensure that the transferred DNS records are authentic and unaltered.

In case of incomplete DNS record transfer, troubleshooting the problem involves checking the DNS server logs and verifying the DNS zone transfer configuration. If the problem persists, it is recommended to contact the DNS hosting provider or IT support team for further assistance.

Tips for Successful DNS Update

Plan ahead: Before making any changes to your DNS records, make sure to plan ahead and have a clear understanding of the changes you want to make. This can help you avoid errors and ensure a smooth update process.

Check TTL values: Before making any changes, check the Time to Live (TTL) values for your DNS records. Lowering the TTL value can help speed up the update process and reduce propagation delays.

Clear cache: Clear your local DNS cache and the cache of any third-party DNS resolvers to ensure that you are seeing the most up-to-date information.

Verify changes: Once the update is complete, verify that the changes have propagated and are visible to all users. Use online DNS checking tools to verify the changes.

Monitor: After the update, monitor your DNS records for any unexpected changes or errors. Regular monitoring can help you detect and fix any issues quickly.

Double Check DNS Records Before Updating

Updating DNS records is a sensitive process and incorrect changes can cause website or email downtime. Therefore, before updating DNS records, double-check that all the changes are correct.

Check the spelling of the domain name and the IP addresses provided. Make sure that there are no typos and the values are accurate.

Also, verify that the TTL (Time To Live) values are set appropriately. TTL specifies how long the DNS servers should cache the DNS records. If the TTL is set too high, it may take longer for the updated records to propagate across the internet.

Once you are confident that the DNS records are correct, save the changes and wait for the changes to propagate. It is best to check the website and email functionality after DNS propagation is complete.

When forcing a DNS update, it’s important to check the status of propagation to ensure that the changes have taken effect. To do this, use DNS tools such as DNS Checker or What’s My DNS to check the DNS record’s status.

These tools will check the status of the DNS record across multiple DNS servers and show you whether the changes have propagated or not. It’s important to remember that propagation can take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours, so it’s important to check the status periodically until the changes have fully propagated.

If the changes are not propagating as expected, it’s possible that there is an issue with the DNS record. In this case, it’s best to double-check the record and ensure that it’s correct.

Additionally, it’s important to check that the DNS zone is configured correctly and that there are no errors in the configuration. If everything looks correct but the changes still aren’t propagating, it may be necessary to contact your DNS provider for assistance.

Clear Local DNS Cache After Updating

After updating your DNS records, it is important to clear your local DNS cache to ensure that your computer is not referencing old information. This can be done by opening a command prompt and typing in the command ipconfig /flushdns.

If you are using a Mac, you can clear your DNS cache by opening the terminal and typing in the command sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder.

It is important to note that clearing your local DNS cache does not affect the DNS cache of your ISP or other servers that your computer may be connected to. It only affects your local machine.

If you are still experiencing issues after updating your DNS records and clearing your local DNS cache, it may be worth waiting a little longer for the changes to fully propagate before troubleshooting further.


In conclusion, updating DNS records can be a challenging task, but it is essential to ensure your website is up and running.

Remember to always double check your DNS records before updating, use DNS tools to check the propagation status, and clear your local DNS cache after updating.

If you encounter issues, make sure to troubleshoot using the common problems mentioned earlier, such as propagation delay and incomplete DNS record transfer.

By following the tips we have outlined, you can ensure a successful DNS update and minimize any potential downtime or issues with your website.

Lastly, don’t hesitate to seek help from your domain registrar or web hosting provider if you are unsure about how to update your DNS records. They can provide you with valuable assistance and support.

Force DNS Update to Keep Your Website Running Smoothly

DNS is a critical component of your website’s infrastructure, and ensuring that your DNS records are up-to-date is essential to keep your website running smoothly.

If you encounter problems after making DNS changes, it may be because of Propagation Delay or Incomplete DNS Record Transfer. However, there are Tips for Successful DNS Update that can help mitigate these issues.

Before updating your DNS records, always Double Check DNS Records to ensure that you have entered the correct information. Additionally, using DNS Tools to check propagation status can help you track your updates.

After updating your DNS records, be sure to Clear Local DNS Cache to ensure that your changes are propagated throughout the network. This will help ensure that your website continues to function correctly for all users.

By following these tips and monitoring your DNS records, you can help keep your website running smoothly and avoid potential downtime and user frustration.

Resolve DNS Issues Quickly and Improve Performance

  • Identify the issue: The first step in resolving any DNS issue is to identify the problem. Common DNS issues include incorrect configurations, slow DNS resolution, and misconfigured DNS records.

  • Use DNS troubleshooting tools: DNS troubleshooting tools like dig, nslookup, and ping can help you diagnose and resolve DNS issues quickly. These tools can help you check DNS resolution times, identify DNS configuration errors, and troubleshoot DNS zone transfers.

  • Check DNS configuration: Check your DNS configurations to ensure that they are correct. Ensure that you have configured the correct DNS servers, IP addresses, and domains. Incorrect DNS configurations can cause slow DNS resolution times and other DNS issues.

In addition to the above, there are other steps you can take to resolve DNS issues quickly:

  1. Clear DNS cache: Clearing the DNS cache can help resolve DNS issues quickly. The DNS cache stores DNS resolution information, and clearing it can help resolve issues caused by outdated information.

  2. Update DNS records: Ensure that your DNS records are up-to-date. Updating DNS records can help resolve issues caused by incorrect DNS information.

By following these steps, you can resolve DNS issues quickly and improve the performance of your website or network.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is DNS and why is it important to update it?

DNS stands for Domain Name System, which is responsible for translating domain names into IP addresses. It is important to update DNS to ensure that your website is accessible to users and to prevent any downtime or performance issues.

What is Server 2012 R2 and how does it relate to DNS update?

Server 2012 R2 is an operating system developed by Microsoft. It is commonly used for hosting and managing servers. DNS updates on Server 2012 R2 can be done through the DNS Manager or PowerShell command line.

Are there any risks involved in forcing DNS update?

Forcing DNS update may cause temporary downtime or issues with website accessibility if not done correctly. It is recommended to take backups and test the update on a non-production environment before implementing it on the live server.

How often should DNS update be forced on Server 2012 R2?

The frequency of DNS updates depends on the frequency of changes made to your website or domain. Generally, it is recommended to force DNS update whenever there are significant changes made to your website, such as changing web hosts or moving to a new server.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!