How to Use cPanel’s PowerDNS

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The PowerDNS open source DNS server software offers high performance with very low memory requirements. cPanel’s PowerDNS implementation reads DNS data from the BIND files and stores DNSSEC data in a SQLite database. This makes cPanel’s PowerDNS compatible with most of cPanel’s DNS Management tools.


System files and other online sources may refer to PowerDNS as pdns.

Install PowerDNS

To install PowerDNS via WHM’s Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection), perform the following steps:

  1. Navigate to WHM’s Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home  >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection).
  2. Select PowerDNS.
  3. Click Save.

PowerDNS version

To check your server’s PowerDNS version, run the WHM API 1 installed_versions function. The function’s output contains the powerdns return, which displays the server’s currently-installed PowerDNS version.


PowerDNS allows you to use DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC) with your domains’ DNS records. DNSSEC adds a layer of security to your domains’ DNS records. DNSSEC uses digital signatures and cryptographic keys to validate the DNS responses’ authenticity. These digital signatures protect clients from various forms of attack, such as Spoofing or a Man-in-the-Middle attack.

To enable DNSSEC, follow the directions in our  Zone Editor documentation.


This feature only appears in cPanel’s Zone Editor interface (cPanel >> Home >> Domains >> Zone Editor) if your system administrator disables DNS clustering and installs PowerDNS in WHM’s Nameserver Selection interface (WHM >> Home >> Service Configuration >> Nameserver Selection).

Troubleshoot PowerDNS

To troubleshoot PowerDNS further, check the /var/log/messages error log.

Last Updated On July 31, 2018

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