How to Use the Nslookup Command-Line Tool

Test and troubleshoot your DNS servers effectively and easily using this command-line administrative tool.


  • Step 1: Open the command prompt window Type "cmd" in the "Search programs and files" field in the Start menu to open the command prompt window.
  • Step 2: Type command to run Type in appropriate syntax at the command prompt to run Nslookup.exe. This will initially return IP addresses for the DNS server from which you are working.
  • TIP: To run in interactive mode, type "nslookup." To run in non-interactive mode, type in "nslookup [-option] [hostname] [server]."
  • Step 3: Generate list of commands Generate a list of commands by typing "help" or a question mark at the command prompt.
  • TIP: Typing in anything that is not recognized as a valid command will automatically be assumed to be a host name.
  • Step 4: Lookup different data types Look up different data types by typing "set type" or "set q[uerytype]" at the command prompt.
  • Step 5: Switch servers Type the command "server" or "lserver" to switch to another name server.
  • Step 6: Transfer zones Transfer an entire zone by typing the command "ls."
  • Step 7: Continue until complete Continue any additional queries using the appropriate commands found in the command list to complete your task. Once the commands become familiar, you'll be troubleshooting without any trouble!
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You Will Need

  • Installed TCP/ICP protocol
  • Specified DNS server

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