Lua Backend

  • Native: Yes
  • Master: Yes
  • Slave: No
  • Superslave: No
  • Autoserial: No
  • DNSSEC: Yes
  • Disabled data: Yes
  • Comments: Yes
  • Module name: lua
  • Launch name: lua

The main author for this module is Fredrik Danerklint.

This backend is just a “glue” between PowerDNS and your own Lua application.

What this means is that you can not have a working setup that can serve you dns-questions directly from start. What you need to do is to program your own backend completely in Lua! Which database server to use etc is now up to you!

What you have here is the possibility to make your own “dns-server” without the knowledge of programming in c/c++.

There is one thing that needs to be said. Remember that each thread PowerDNS launches of this backend is completely different so they cannot share information between each other!

You will need some kind of a database that can be shared for this.

All the functionnames that PowerDNS accept for a backend should be the same in your Lua script, in lowercase. Also, the parameters should be in the same order. Where there is a structure in c/c++ there is a table in the Lua backend. This is also true for return values. A few functions expect that you return a table in a table.

New functions

There is a couple of new functions for you to use in Lua:

logger(log_facility, "your", "messages")

All these log_facilities is available:

  • log_all
  • log_ntlog
  • log_alert
  • log_critical
  • log_error
  • log_warning
  • log_notice,
  • log_info
  • log_debug
  • log_none


This will give you back three parameters with remote_ip, remote_port and local_ip in that order.

Can only be used in the functions list() and getsoa().


This one tries to get the value of the name "lua-PARAMETER" from the pdns.conf file.


This is the same as `getarg() <#getarg>`__ but return a boolean instead of a string.

You also have all the different QTypes in a table called ‘QTypes’.

What has been tested

The only functionality of the minimal functions except zone-transfer has been tested.

In the included powerdns-luabackend.lua file there is a example of how this can be done. Note that this is more or less a static example since there is no possibility for each thread to know when something has changed.

However, you can run pdns_control reload and it should reload the whole thing from scratch (does not work for the moment, PowerDNS only calls two thread with the reload command - not all of them).

What you will find under the test directory

The following script can be used to test the server:

This will yield the following result:

$dig any @ -p5300 +multiline
; <<>> DiG 9.7.3 <<>> any @ -p5300 +multiline
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 1001
;; flags: qr aa rd; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 3, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0
;; WARNING: recursion requested but not available

;          IN ANY

;; ANSWER SECTION:           120 IN CNAME          120 IN A          120 IN AAAA 1:2:3:4:5:6:7:8

;; Query time: 1 msec
;; WHEN: Thu Jun  2 22:19:56 2011
;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 93



Path to your lua script, ‘powerdns-luabackend.lua’ by default.


Log queries. default is ‘no’.


You can also override all the default functionsnames for the luafunctions if you want. For example:

lua-f_lookup = mynewfunction

will call the function mynewfunction for the lookup-routine.

If you want your own configuration parameters you can have that too. Just call the function getarg("PARAMETER") and it will return the value of lua-PARAMETER. For boolean you use the function mustdo("PARAMETER").

Your own error function in lua

You can have an error function in Lua when Lua gives back a error.

First make your error function then you put this in pdns.conf:

lua-f_exec_error = YOUR_METHOD


You can have full dnssec support in our Lua application. You should note the following regarding this:

You don’t have to implement the function ‘updateDNSSECOrderAndAuth’ since the default code will work correctly for you via the backend itself.

The functions activateDomainKey and deactivateDomainKey can be implemented via a new function called updateDomainKey, which has three parameters (the other two has only two parameters) where the third is a boolean which is true or false depending on which function that was called from the beginning.

Information for logging

If you have the parameter query-logging or lua-logging-query set to true/yes/on, then you will see what is happening in each function when PowerDNS calls them.

This can, hopefully, help you with some debugging if you run into some kind of trouble with your Lua application.