DNS policies at IU

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UITS is responsible for administering the Domain Name System (DNS) for all internet domains assigned to Indiana University. These policies apply to domain names hosted on IU DNS servers.

Local name servers

UITS restricts departments from setting up their own local name servers. IU maintains strategically located, highly available (24 hours a day, 7 days a week), fully redundant, and fault-tolerant name servers, thereby removing any technical, structural, or functional reasons for additional name servers in the IU name space. When, in the past, some departments deployed local name servers, such practices invariably resulted in naming integrity problems, user confusion and frustration, and unnecessary departmental overhead.


IU domain names should only be assigned to resources within the IU address space.

Exceptions allowing TLDs to point to third-party name servers may be granted by University Communications and Marketing on the following conditions:

Top- and second-level domains

UITS manages official IU domains by allocating, registering, arbitrating, and maintaining the name space, thereby guaranteeing best performance, fair use, and compliance with DNS conventions and IU appropriate use policies.

UITS reserves the top-level domain (TLD), iu.edu, for IU services that meet either of these requirements:

  • They have a system-wide scope; that is, internally focused services or information provided from the web page(s) must be applicable and accessible to constituents on all (or a major portion) of IU's campuses.
  • They broadly represent IU in that externally focused services or information provided from the web page(s) must represent a nonprofit, non-commercial agency, institute, or program supported by all (or a major portion) of IU's campuses.

Campus second-level domains (SLDs):

SLD Campus
indiana.edu Bloomington
iupui.edu Indianapolis
iun.edu IU Northwest
iue.edu IU East
ius.edu IU Southeast
iusb.edu IU South Bend
iuk.edu IU Kokomo
iupuc.edu IUPU Columbus
EDUCAUSE, which administers the .edu domain, will not permit a single accredited institution to have more than one domain in the .edu domain. However, IU's domains have existed since before these policies were enabled, and in some instances, IU has been grandfathered in.

Because it is important for programs and other activities to be associated with the campus from which they are supported, UITS does not allow services supported from and serving the interests of one campus to carry the domain of another campus, nor will it allow these services to use the iu.edu domain.

Department domains and subdomains

Department domains (for example, economics.indiana.edu and chancellor.iun.edu) are containers representing organization entities within SLDs. They allow subsequent attribution of computers and services within that department domain.

Subdomains are containers for logically related names within department domains, and reflect specific computers, units, and services within departments. They usually take the form service.department.campus.edu.

Designer domains

Designer domains (in this context) are other TLDs that do not have an IU association included in the name (for example, centeroncongress.org, or others in the .net or .info domains). UITS allows such names only in the following cases, subject to approval:

  • For a .org site, the entity represented by the web page or server being named must be a nonprofit, non-commercial academic agency, institute, or program supported by a consortium comprising an IU department or office and nonprofit organizations external to IU.
  • For a .net site, the service represented by the web page or server being named must be part of a set (that is, a network) of similar external web pages or servers.
  • For a .info site, the service represented must provide an outlet for information that has an outside market and is uniquely possessed by a particular IU department or agency.

Your unit is responsible for acquiring and maintaining the domain through a domain registrar. You should list dnsadmin@indiana.edu as a technical contact for your domain, in addition to your departmental email addresses. You should use a IU P-Cards for the transaction. For more about P-Cards, see General Card Information. If you have questions, speak with your departmental business office.

If your unit fails to renew its domain in time, an external (non-IU) organization could buy the domain and take control of the content, which could require the university to initiate legal action to reclaim the domain. Units needing to reclaim domains are responsible for all associated costs. To initiate the process, contact IU Licensing and Trademarks.

Commercial domains

Commercial (.com) domains are generally not permitted in the IU technology environment. Sites maintained by an IU office may not use a .com domain. Sites that are not conducting commerce should not use a .com domain.

IU entities that have a reason to use .com naming for approved revenue generating activities (either on university-owned computers or using services of an external provider) must contact Treasury Operations for approval. UITS will not permit .com naming for activities not governed by the processes and procedures of Treasury Operations and Office of the University Controller.

General naming conventions

All static IP assignments require an assigned FQDN by dns-admin@iu.edu, along with a username and Active Directory (AD) security group for accountability. Services and hosts that are public facing reflect on the university, the campus, and the department or agency. Names for non-public facing hosts are left to the discretion of the service/host owner. Selected names must be specific enough to accurately characterize the entity or service being represented without confusion with other services, and must be professional and non-controversial. Furthermore, these conditions must hold:

  • An SLD must be unique within a TLD.
  • A subdomain (server/hostname) must be unique within its parent SLD.

Because all IU campuses, departments, and services are subsets of the entire IU environment, central DNS support for naming will be consistent with information cited in this document.

Request iu.edu or designer domain naming

Before submitting your request, you will need to register your domain with an outside registrar (for example, GoDaddy or Network Solutions). Make sure the name servers are listed as dns1.iu.edu and dns2.iu.edu.

Staff will coordinate the review of requests for iu.edu naming, and also for .org, .net, and .info. Submit your request using the Domain and virtual host request form.

Staff will not review naming that is otherwise consistent with campus/department/subdomain naming as outlined above.

If you are planning to host your designer domain on Sitehost, then submit your request following the instructions in Request a virtual host for Sitehost.

Request a campus second-level domain (SLD)

Campus-specific domain requests must be sent to dns-admin@iu.edu and include the following information:

  • A justification for your request (that is, why you need a static IP address)
  • Fully qualified domain name
  • Device type (for example, printer, server, etc.)
  • Type of address (public or private)
  • Primary contact (IU username)
  • Local UITS support person or secondary contact (IU username)
  • Subnet and/or physical location of the device

This is document aqeo in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2024-05-14 11:35:48.