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Modify the SOA record for a zone

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

You can use this procedure to change settings for the start of authority (SOA) resource record for a zone. The settings that are applied for the SOA record affect how zone transfers are made between servers.

You can perform this procedure by using the DNS snap-in or by using the Dnscmd command-line tool.

Administrative credentials

To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Administrators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group might be able to perform this procedure. As a security best practice, consider using the Run as command to perform this procedure.

Modifying the SOA record for a zone

To modify the SOA record for a zone using the Windows interface
  1. Open the DNS snap-in.

  2. In the console tree, right-click the applicable zone, and then click Properties.

  3. Click the Start of Authority (SOA) tab.

  4. Modify the properties for the SOA record as needed.

To open the DNS snap-in, click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click DNS.

To modify the SOA record for a zone using the command line
  • At a command prompt, type the following command, and then press ENTER:

    dnscmd ServerName /RecordAdd ZoneName NodeName [/Aging] [Ttl] SOAPrimSvrAdmin Serial#\ Refresh Retry Expire MinTTL


    Value Description


    Required. Specifies the Domain Name System (DNS) host name of the DNS server. You can also type the Internet Protocol (IP) address of the DNS server. To specify the DNS server on the local computer, you can also type a period (.)


    Required. Adds or modifies a resource record.


    Required. Specifies the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of the zone.


    Required. Specifies the FQDN of the node in the DNS namespace for which the SOA record is added. You can also type the node name relative to the ZoneName, or you can type @, which specifies the zone's root node.


    Specifies that this resource record is able to be aged and scavenged. If this parameter is not used, the resource record remains in the DNS database unless it is manually updated or removed.


    Specifies the Time to Live (TTL) setting for the resource record. The default TTL is defined in SOA resource record.


    Required. Specifies the type of resource record that you are modifying.


    Specifies that new records are open to modification by any user. Without this parameter, only administrators may modify the new record.


    Required. Specifies the FQDN name of the server that is the primary source for information about the zone, for example,


    Required. Specifies the name of the DNS administrator for the zone, for example,


    Required. Specifies the version information for the zone.


    Required. Specifies the refresh interval for the zone. The standard setting is 3600 seconds (one hour).


    Required. Specifies the retry interval for the zone. The standard setting is 600 seconds (10 minutes).


    Required. Specifies the expire interval for the zone. The standard setting is 86400 seconds (one day).


    Required. Specifies the minimum TTL value. This is the length of time that is used by other DNS servers to determine how long to cache information for a record in the zone before expiring and discarding it. The standard setting is 3600 seconds (one hour).

To modify any specific SOA record's values using Dnscmd, you must specify all the SOA values (PrimSvr Admin Serial#\ Refresh Retry Expire MinTTL).

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