Root hints are name and address pairs that
enable a DNS server to locate root DNS servers. They help resolve
DNS queries for hosts in domains for which the server is not an
authority. During a new DNS server installation, Windows Server
uses the Cache.dns file stored in %systemroot%\System32\DNS to
implement root hints.

If you originally set up a DNS server for
internal queries only, it’s possible that the root hints in your
server are empty or that someone has modified them to point to
internal servers. If you now want the DNS server to resolve queries
for external hosts, it’s important to ensure that the server has a
valid set of root hints.

To configure root hints for the server, follow
these steps:

  1. Ensure that you’ve configured the server to
    use an upstream DNS server capable of resolving external hosts.
  2. Open the DNS console from the Administrative
    Tools folder.
  3. In the left pane, right-click the server in
    question, and choose Properties.
  4. On the Root Hints tab, select the first
    server in the Name Servers list, and click Edit.
  5. Click Resolve to resolve the host name to its
    IP address, and click OK. You can also manually enter the IP
    address for the target server.
  6. Repeat the process for the remaining root
    servers, and add others if necessary.
  7. When you’ve finished, close all dialog

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