In the last post I summarized the content underlying the first domain 'Configuring DNS Zones' in the 70-640 certification exam. Today I will provide a sample practice question.

Sample practice question ^

You are the administrator for a Windows Server 2008 R2-based Active Directory domain named 4sysopslab.com. The client base of the organization consists of Windows 7, Windows XP, and Windows NT 4.0 computers. You also support an internal line-of-business (LOB) application that employs legacy technologies that has the hostname genappserv01.4sysopslab.com.

Your name resolution infrastructure includes a GlobalNames zone. After creating a CNAME alias record for the LOB server named lob01, you discover that users are unable to connect to the server by using the lob01 name. Connections using the genappserv01 name function correctly.

Which of the following actions should you take in order to resolve this problem?

a. Verify the properties of the GlobalNames zone in WINS Manager.

b. Use the ping command to attempt a connection to genappserv01.

c. Verify the zone data in DNS Manager

d. Use the tracert command to attempt a connection to lob01

The correct answer, explanation, and analysis ^

The correct answer in this case is C. In order to troubleshoot this name resolution issue, we should open the DNS Manager MMC console (or the dnscmd command-line utility) and investigate the contents of the GlobalNames zone. Perhaps there was a typo in the CNAME record?

GlobalNames zone

DNS Manager - GlobalNames zone

The last sentence of the previous paragraph actually brings up an important test-taker’s tip: Never “read into” a Microsoft exam item. In other words, stick with the words in the item stem and answer choices themselves and go no further. Believe it or not, you can at times hobble yourself by thinking too much from your own practical experience instead of applying “Microsoft thinking” to the problem.

The incorrect answer choices in an IT certification exam items are known as distracters. Choice a is incorrect because this item has nothing to do with WINS, and the GlobalNames zone is a Windows Server 2008 DNS feature.

Choice b and d are both incorrect because the item stem already states that we are unable to connect to the LOB server using the single label name lob1, and are able to connect by using the DNS host name genappserv01.

Now that we have explained the correct and incorrect answer choices, let’s perform a little deeper analysis on the item itself.

The first few sentences of a Microsoft exam item set the stage for the problem and actual question. Back in the Windows Server 2003 days, item writers added a lot of extraneous information to the prologue part of the item stem in order to confuse test takers. However, things are different with the Windows Server 2008 exams inasmuch as the item stems are more terse and to-the-point.

Some clues in the item stem that we have need for single label name resolution are the references to older versions of Windows and the presence of a “legacy” line of business application. Because WINS is not mentioned in the item scenario, we have to assume that WINS is not in use in the network.

The problem section of the item is careful not to mention specific name resolution types. Instead, you are to infer that in the case of lob01 we are using a GlobalNames short name, and in the case of genappserv01 name we are using traditional DNS host names.

Finally, we need to have enough content familiarity with GlobalNames DNS zones to understand which tools are necessary in order to troubleshoot the problem.

As you can see, I created this practice question with the requirement that the test taker not only have the prerequisite content knowledge, but also have some critical thinking skills to apply in answering the question correctly.

Conclusion ^

I hope that you found this practice question helpful in your study. If you are fuzzy on what the GlobalNames DNS zone is and how it works, then you should hit up the relevant hyperinks I give below in order to clarify your understanding. Please be aware that Microsoft does in point of fact include every single item listed in their exam blueprint in the live exam.

In the next post in this series I will cover DNS server settings.

Recommended reading ^

1 Comment
  1. Aaron 10 years ago

    It's been a few years since I took this exam so this was a nice reminder of the GlobalNames feature of Server 2008 DNS.

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