The purpose of this policy is to assign responsibility for the management and oversight of Domain Name Service (DNS) at the University of Northern Iowa. This ensures consistent naming schemes are used, protects the University’s reputation, and provides clarity and consistency to users of the campus network.
The University of Northern Iowa develops, publishes, and enforces policies, procedures, and standards in order to achieve and maintain appropriate protection and management of IT Resources.
This policy applies to all faculty, staff, and students as well as any other individuals or entities who use information and IT resources at the University of Northern Iowa. Further, this policy applies to all IT resources owned or leased by UNI; to any privately-owned equipment connected to the campus network and includes, but is not limited to, computer equipment, software, operating systems, tablets, phones, multimedia devices, storage media; and the campus network itself.
IT Network and Infrastructure Services in Information Technology (IT) shall be responsible for Domain Name Services (DNS) of the uni.edu domain. All uses of both uni.edu domain space and UNI IP address space shall be in support of UNI and its mission. All users desiring to use the University network must register within the uni.edu domain. No domain names other than "uni.edu" may be for University-related business unless approved by the CIO, the vice president for the requesting unit, and the Provost.
Domain Name Background
The first two designations of a domain name are assigned on a national basis. The University of Northern Iowa manages its presence on the Internet under the domain name of "uni.edu". UNI is responsible for assigning subordinate domain names (such as "ebiz" in "ebiz.uni.edu") to specific Internet protocol (IP) address ranges. While there are no published rules for domain name system implementation, agreement has evolved within the Internet community on how names should be assigned. This agreement assists users and network administrators in navigating an extremely (and increasingly) complicated volume of Internet nodes.
Updated Procedures as Technology Advances
Information Technology shall publish procedures regarding the use of DNS by IT Resources and update those procedures as changes in technology occur. Such procedures shall have the full force and effect of this policy.
Domain Name Format
Domain names within uni.edu will follow a standard format and will be created upon request or automatically assigned when new machines are connected to the UNI network. The format for Standard DNS services entries is "L4.L3.uni.edu" where:
- The name structure follows the University’s organizational structure and/or physical location.
- L3 (level 3) sub-domains will be University colleges, divisions, schools, institutes, departments, or buildings that are officially recognized by the University or campus-wide technology that serves the entire campus. For example: "department.uni.edu" for a department specific resource or "www.uni.edu" for a campus-wide technology. Assignment of Level3 sub-domains will be made by IT with approval from University leadership if deemed necessary.
- L4 (level 4) sub-domains should reflect the specific service being offered, reflect a name assigned to an IT Resource, or follow an automatic naming scheme. For example: museum.library.uni.edu, fs1.it.uni.edu, or 117-29.ittc.uni.edu.
- L3 and L4 sub-domain names must not be trademarked, copyrighted, distasteful, or misrepresent their function. Length limit for levels 3 and 4 is 63 valid characters each, but shorter names are preferred.
- Existing hosts or sub-domains registered under uni.edu that do not conform to this policy will be reviewed to bring them into conformity.
Requesting a Domain Name Alias
A UNI faculty or staff member may request a domain name alias for a specific host that provides a service to campus. Providing a DNS alias is at the discretion of Information Technology. DNS aliases provide a second, perhaps functional, name for a specific computer. These names must be registered within the uni.edu domain and adhere to standard layout for domain names (e.g. portal.uni.edu is an alias pointing to the IT resource that provides load balancing for servers supporting the MyUNIverse Portal).
University affiliates who have been approved to have a University website (see Policy 14.08 World Wide Web) may be registered within the UNI domain. University affiliates may also choose to register outside the uni.edu domain. DNS services will be provided to affiliate domain names only if they are consonant with the mission of University.
Affiliate domain name aliases may be maintained by the University and allowed to resolve to machines on the University’s network if both of the following conditions are present:
- A significant number of people from different organizations inside or outside the University will use the proposed name.
- The proposed name is not likely to be confused with the name of a University of Northern Iowa department, function, service, or other unit.
Violations of this policy may be referred for disciplinary action as indicated in Policy 14.04 Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources.
Usage of Terms
DOMAIN NAME SERVICE (DNS) – Domain Name Service (DNS) is a mechanism used by the Internet community to associate organizations with their electronic sites by assigning names and associated IP addresses to specific computers on the Internet. DNS is also used to provide the organizational affiliation and location of service associated with a specific address.
INTERNET PROTOCOL (IP) – The basic communications protocol used to route traffic and establish boundaries around the internet.
IP ADDRESS – An IP address is a number assigned to devices connected to a network that uses the Internet Protocol.
IT RESOURCE – IT resource may include computers, software, servers, network utilization, storage utilization, virtual machine capacity, tablets, phones, multimedia devices, storage devices, wireless spectrum, and any other in-demand resource managed by IT staff.
USER – User includes any faculty, staff, student, developer, contractor, vendor, or visitor as well as any other individual or entity using information, university data, and/or IT resources of the University of Northern Iowa.
Information Technology, approved September 15, 2020
University Council, approved November 9, 2020
President and President’s Cabinet, approved November 30, 2020
[Last reviewed and/or updated 11/2020, 5/2000]