Browse Prior Art Database

Hostnames Server (RFC0811) Disclosure Number: IPCOM000003860D
Original Publication Date: 1982-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-13
Document File: 4 page(s) / 8K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

K. Harrenstien: AUTHOR [+3]


More keywords will be added as new needs are recognized. A more detailed description of the allowed requests/responses will follow.

This text was extracted from a ASCII Text document.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 42% of the total text.

Ken Harrenstien RFC-811

Vic White 1 March 1982

Elizabeth Feinler

Network Information Center

SRI International



The NIC Internet Hostnames Server is an NCP/TCP-based host

information program and protocol running on the SRI-NIC

machine. It is one of a series of ARPANET/Internet name

services maintained by the Network Information Center (NIC) at

SRI International on behalf of the Defense Communications

Agency (DCA). The function of this particular server is to

deliver machine-readable name/address information describing

networks, gateways, hosts, and eventually domains, within the

internet environment. As currently implemented, the server

provides the information outlined in the DoD Internet Host

Table Specification (RFC 810).


The name server accepts simple text query requests of the form


where square brackets ("[]") indicate an optional field. The

command key is a keyword indicating the nature of the request.

The defined keys are explained below.

The response, on the other hand, is of the form


where is a keyword indicating the nature of the

response, and the rest of the response is interpreted in the

context of the key.


The currently defined keywords are:

Command Keys:

HNAME (find entry with given name)

HADDR (find entry with given address)

ALL (return entire host table)

1 March 1982

RFC 811 Hostnames Server

Response Keys:

ERR (entry not found, nature of error follows)

NET (entry found, rest of entry follows)

GATEWAY (entry found, rest of entry follows)

HOST (entry found, rest of entry follows)

BEGIN (followed by multiple entries)

END (done with BEGIN block of entries)

More keywords will be added as new needs are recognized. A

more detailed description of the allowed requests/responses

will follow.


To access this server from a program, connect to service host


TCP: port 101 decimal

NCP: socket 101 decimal for ICP

send the information query, and await the response.

Note: Care should be taken to interpret the nature of the

reply (e.g, single record or multiple record), so that no

confusion about the state of the reply results. An "ALL"

request will likely return several hundred or more records of

all types (see RFC 810), whereas "HNAME" or "HADDR" will

usually return one HOST record, or "BEGIN:", list of host

records, "END:", if there is more than one match.


1. HNAME Query - Given a name, find the entry or entries that


the name. For ex...