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Advantages of mDNS protocol | disadvantages of mDNS protocol

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of mDNS protocol and its basics. It mentions benefits or advantages of mDNS protocol and drawbacks or disadvantages of mDNS protocol.

What is mDNS protocol?

Multicast DNS protocol realizes name resolution between IP addresses and host names. It is used to replace conventional DNS server in small local area network. It is backward compatible to conventional DNS.

Zeroconf is set of technologies which creates network automatically based on TCP/IP when peripherals are connected. It does not require special servers and manual operator intervention. Without Zeroconf, one may require DHCP server and DNS server or need to do network settings manually.

mDNS Name Structure

The mDNS protocol works in companion with DNS based service discovery (DNS-SD) protocol. The mDNS is specified in RFC6762 document whereas DNS-SD is specified in RFC6763. The mDNS protocol is used for zeroconf (i.e. zero configuration) networking devices. DNS-SD allows clients to discover named list of service instances and its service type. Moreover DNS-SD resolves these different services to hostnames using standard DNS query message.

Multicast DNS (i.e. mDNS) is used by Bonjour of Apple Inc and Linux Avahi service discovery systems. Windows-10 implementation of mDNS has also been developed recently. Refer DNS vs mDNS >> for comparison between conventional DNS and mDNS protocols.

Benefits or advantages of mDNS protocol

Following are the benefits or advantages of mDNS protocol:
➨The mDNS protocol executes DNS like operation on local link without conventional DNS server.
➨Administration or configuration of mDNS system is not required.
➨No additional infrastructure is needed for mDNS service implementation. The mDNS system works even if the infrastructure of the system fails.
➨It saves the cost of reserving global domain name as local DNS domain names are free to use.
➨No separate error detection mechanism is required, as multicase DNS allows detection of name collisions during the probing process.

Drawbacks or disadvantages of mDNS protocol

Following are the drawbacks or disadvantages of mDNS protocol:
➨It can not be used for network having large number of nodes. This is due to the fact that most queries and responses are transmitted in multicast mode and consecutively it will generate large volume of traffic.
➨The performance of mDNS is poor compare to conventional DNS in network with larger nodes. This is because mDNS transmissions are more due to multicast mode unlike DNS which uses unicast mode of transmission. Multicast DNS generate more number of queries and their responses due to large number of different nodes which causes immense burden on the local network.
➨Multicast DNS (i.e. mDNS) cannot be used in multiple IP subnets and it is recommended to be employed in link local scope level. In contrast, conventional DNS can be used world wide.

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