DNSSEC Profile and Support

PowerDNS aims to serve unexciting, standards compliant, DNSSEC information. One goal is to have relevant parts of our output be identical or equivalent to important fellow-traveller software like NLNetLabs’ NSD.

Particularly, if a PowerDNS secured zone is transferred via AXFR, it should be able to contain the same records as when that zone was signed using ldns-signzone using the same keys and settings.

PowerDNS supports serving pre-signed zones, as well as online (‘live’) signed operations. In the last case, Signature Rollover and Key Maintenance are fully managed by PowerDNS.

Supported Algorithms

Supported Algorithms (See the IANA website for more information):

  • RSASHA1 (algorithm 5, algorithm 7)
  • RSASHA256 (algorithm 8)
  • RSASHA512 (algorithm 10)
  • ECDSA (algorithm 13 and 14)
  • ed25519 (algorithm 15)
  • ed448 (algorithm 16)

For the DS records, these digest types are supported:

  • SHA-1 (algorithm 1)
  • SHA-256 (algorithm 2)
  • SHA-384 (algorithm 4)

This corresponds to:

  • RFC 4033: DNS Security Introduction and Requirements
  • RFC 4034: Resource Records for the DNS Security Extensions, Protocol Modifications for the DNS Security Extensions
  • RFC 4035: Protocol Modifications for the DNS Security Extensions
  • RFC 4509: Use of SHA-256 in DNSSEC Delegation Signer (DS) Resource Records (RRs)
  • RFC 5155: DNS Security (DNSSEC) Hashed Authenticated Denial of Existence
  • RFC 5702: Use of SHA-2 Algorithms with RSA in DNSKEY and RRSIG Resource Records for DNSSEC
  • RFC 6605: Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (DSA) for DNSSEC
  • RFC 8080: Edwards-Curve Digital Security Algorithm (EdDSA) for DNSSEC

In order to facilitate interoperability with existing technologies, PowerDNS keys can be imported and exported in industry standard formats.

When using OpenSSL for ECDSA signatures (this is default), starting from OpenSSL 1.1.0, the algorithm used is resilient against PRNG failure, while not strictly conforming to RFC 6979.


Actual supported algorithms depend on the crypto-libraries PowerDNS was compiled against. To check the supported DNSSEC algorithms in your build of PowerDNS, run pdnsutil list-algorithms.