Lead Image © Sergey Nivens, 123RF.com

Lead Image © Sergey Nivens, 123RF.com

PowerDNS Authoritative server high availability with MariaDB Galera

Power Up

Article from ADMIN 70/2022
Combining the PowerDNS Authoritative server daemon with MariaDB's multiprimary Galera cluster allows a simple yet robust solution for your DNS needs.

Recently, I found myself in the need for a trio of Authoritative nameservers to disperse between my company's data centers. Having used a PowerDNS Recursive server for years, I was anxious to give their Authoritative version a heaping helping of DNS records.

Unlike PowerDNS Recursive, the Authoritative server requires a back-end system to store records. The list of supported back ends is rather lengthy, including but not limited to MySQL, PostgreSQL, Berkeley Internet Name Domain (BIND), and even Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP). I consider myself rather skilled at MariaDB, and because the Authoritative server supports MySQL, I knew that MariaDB would be a non-issue.

I've set up dozens of MySQL replication servers over the years, but I wanted to investigate something different, something a bit better suited to this project's specific needs. MySQL Replication uses a primary server to update one or more replicas, and because the transactions are committed sequentially, a slow transaction can cause replicas to trail behind the primary server. If the primary fails, it is entirely possible that the replica might not have recorded the last few transactions. With a transaction-safe engine, such as InnoDB, a transaction will either be completed on replica nodes or not at all. That just won't do.

Enter MariaDB's Galera Cluster. Galera is a virtually synchronous multiprimary cluster for MariaDB that is only available on Linux and only supports the InnoDB engine for storage (although MyISAM and Aria are in the works). With Galera, you get virtually synchronous replication, active-active multiprimary topology, read/write to any node, automatic membership control, automatic node joining, true parallel replication, and direct client connections. Those features translate to no replica lag, no lost transactions, read scalability, and smaller client latencies – perfect for keeping DNS records happy and healthy across data centers.

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