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5. Microsoft DNS servers basic forwarding configuration

This chapter forms part of the Transition Network guidance for DNS local forwarding and server configuration.

As stated previously, DNS forwarding always uses recursive queries. It is important to know this, since the way that Microsoft sometimes presents its configuration may confuse administrators, due to unclear wording of some of the options.

This section describes the configuration of DNS Forwarding for Microsoft Windows Server version 2016 only. This method uses the Server Manager component, whereas in previous versions of Windows Server (2008, 2012) this would be configured through the DNS Microsoft Management Console (MMC).

5.1 5.1 Windows Server 2016

The following steps describe the process of configuring DNS forwarding for Windows Server 2016.

Click the Windows logo or press the Windows logo key on your keyboard, type “Server Manager” and then choose “DNS” from the Tools drop down menu in the upper-right corner of the screen.

Windows server manager 2016, with the DNS menu option highlighted

This will open the DNS Manager. In DNS Manager, right click the host name and select Properties.

The DNS menu of Windows server manager 2016, with DNS Properties highlighted

In the Properties menu, click the Forwarders tab, then click the Edit button to add a DNS Forwarder.

The forwarders tab of the properties menu of Windows server manager 2016 with the Edit option highlighted,

This will show the Edit Forwarders dialog box.

The Edit Forwarders menu of Windows Server Manager 2016

Where you see the highlighted text “<Click here to add an IP Address or DNS Name>”, enter the NHS Digital DNS RIPE IP addresses: and

The resulting list should look like this:

The Edit Forwarders menu of Windows Server Manager 2016 showing newly configured forwarding IP addresses


The "Number of seconds before forward queries time out:" checkbox is the same function as in previous versions of Windows Server. As with Windows Server 2008, the default is 3 seconds. It is advised that this value be increased to at least 15 seconds to compensate for transient conditions on the network that may cause a slight delay.

Last edited: 13 November 2019 10:42 am