Cloudflare’s Virtual DNS is an advanced firewall for DNS infrastructure— keeping your DNS infrastructure online no matter what attacks are fired at your servers. Virtual DNS also improves your global DNS performance by giving you access to Cloudflare’s robust DNS cache in over 102 cities on 6 continents around the world.
Virtual DNS makes running reliable DNS easy by protecting and accelerating any organization’s DNS infrastructure. With Virtual DNS enabled, DNS queries for your nameservers get sent to the nearest Cloudflare data center where the legitimacy of the requests are checked and malicious traffic is blocked. If the proper DNS response is available in Cloudflare's cache, Cloudflare will return the response to the visitor. If the DNS response is not available in cache, Cloudflare will query the provider's nameservers in the background to fetch the DNS response and send it back to the visitor.
Onboarding Virtual DNS is easy, with a simple change of your nameservers’ IP addresses, your DNS infrastructure can be protected in as little as 5 minutes.
Because Virtual DNS sits in front of your DNS nameservers, it shields your infrastructure, and only sends you the traffic that you want to get. With the ability to rate limit traffic to your servers, you can specify specify how much traffic Cloudflare should send to your nameservers. Rate limits are configurable over API, so you can configure them dynamically based on your origin health.
DDoS attacks on DNS infrastructure are becoming increasingly more common. Cloudflare’s Virtual DNS has DDoS mitigation at its core, leveraging the the same DDoS protection that has mitigated some of the largest DDoS attacks to date. When malicious traffic is aimed at your origin nameservers, Cloudflare’s DDoS protection reroutes that traffic and absorbs it across its global network.
Virtual DNS also masks the true origin IP addresses of providers’ nameservers behind Cloudflare’s IP addresses, keeping them safe from being targeted by attackers.
With Virtual DNS, Cloudflare caches DNS records at the edge of our globally distributed network, ensuring that queries are resolved lightning-fast on every continent and in every major city regardless of origin server location.
Even if your DNS servers are down, Virtual DNS can answer on your behalf by serving a stale answer from cache. That means your website will be available and traffic continues to flow, even when your origin nameservers are compromised.
In addition to stopping attack traffic at the Cloudflare edge, Virtual DNS saves bandwidth to the origin nameservers.
Both services offer advanced security and performance improvements for DNS infrastructure. Cloudflare Authoritative DNS is a fully managed and hosted DNS service. On the other hand, Virtual DNS allows you to continue to run your own infrastructure and your DNS records stay on your own nameservers. Virtual DNS is great for hosting and cloud providers, DNS providers, SaaS providers, registrars, registries, ISP’s and others running large authoritative DNS infrastructure.
Virtual DNS is sold as a separate product, regardless of plan type. For more information, contact our sales team.