Have you ever tried digging deeper into how your computer makes a connection to a website over the internet? If yes, you might already have come across terms like IP address and DNS at some part during your research. The former is a unique address associated with each computer connected to the internet including website servers. DNS (Domain Name System), on the other hand, lets you access these IP addresses using human-friendly URLs i.e. domain names, translating the latter into the former in the blink of an eye. So in short, if you exclude DNS from the equation, you’ll need to access each website using its IP address – good luck trying to remember that for every website you visit! DNSQuerySniffer is a new network sniffing application for Windows by Nirsoft that allows you to see DNS queries sent by your system to remote servers, i.e. the websites you surf while using the internet.
The application can come handy for webmasters and network administrators who may use it to check DNS propagation – a process when a website is moved from an old location to a new server. You an also make use of it to check DNS connections that your system makes to remote servers in general. It may look simple on the surface (just like all other tools by its maker), but the application is really powerful and effective at what it does, displaying the DNS queries in real time.
The application doesn’t require any installation on your system and runs directly from its portable EXE file included in the downloaded ZIP package. When launched for the first time, a ‘Capture Options’ window pops up, letting you choose the capture method and the network adapter your want the tool to sniff. You can launch the Capture Options window any time at a later point by pressing the F9 key.
The interface of DNSQuesrySniffer displays the following information: Host Name, Port Number, Query ID, Request Type (A, AAAA, NS, MX, and so on), Request Time, Response Time, Duration, Response Code, Number of records, and the content of the returned DNS records. To the far left, you will find a bullet icon that automatically changes color to green or yellow according to the response code. DNS sniffing can be stopped and resumed at any time by pressing F6 and F5 respectively. In addition, you can clear the current list by using Ctrl + X. Moreover, you can save any or all item(s) in the list into CSV, XML or HTML file.
DNSQuerySniffer works on Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8, supporting both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of the OS.