Name resolution (DNS) in App Service

Your app uses DNS when making calls to dependent resources. Resources could be Azure services such as Key Vault, Storage or Azure SQL, but it could also be web apis that your app depends on. When you want to make a call to for example, you're using DNS to resolve the name to an IP. This article describes how App Service is handling name resolution and how it determines what DNS servers to use. The article also describes settings you can use to configure DNS resolution.

How name resolution works in App Service

If you aren't integrating your app with a virtual network and you haven't configured custom DNS, your app uses Azure DNS. If you integrate your app with a virtual network, your app uses the DNS configuration of the virtual network. The default for virtual network is also to use Azure DNS. Through the virtual network, it's also possible to link to Azure DNS private zones and use that for private endpoint resolution or private domain name resolution.

If you configured your virtual network with a list of custom DNS servers, name resolution uses these servers. If your virtual network is using custom DNS servers and you're using private endpoints, you should read this article carefully. You also need to consider that your custom DNS servers are able to resolve any public DNS records used by your app. Your DNS configuration needs to either forward requests to a public DNS server, include a public DNS server like Azure DNS in the list of custom DNS servers or specify an alternative server at the app level.

When your app needs to resolve a domain name using DNS, the app sends a name resolution request to all configured DNS servers. If the first server in the list returns a response within the timeout limit, you get the result returned immediately. If not, the app waits for the other servers to respond within the timeout period and evaluates the DNS server responses in the order you've configured the servers. If none of the servers respond within the timeout and you have configured retry, you repeat the process.

Configuring DNS servers

The individual app allows you to override the DNS configuration by specifying the dnsServers property in the dnsConfiguration site property object. You can specify up to five custom DNS servers. You can configure custom DNS servers using the Azure CLI:

az resource update --resource-group <group-name> --name <app-name> --resource-type "Microsoft.Web/sites" --set properties.dnsConfiguration.dnsServers="['','']"

You can still use the existing WEBSITE_DNS_SERVER app setting, and you can add custom DNS servers with either setting. If you want to add multiple DNS servers using the app setting, you must separate the servers by commas with no blank spaces added.

Using the app setting WEBSITE_DNS_ALT_SERVER, you append a DNS server to end of the configured DNS servers. You use the setting to configure a fallback server to custom DNS servers from the virtual network.

Configure name resolution behavior

If you require fine-grained control over name resolution, App Service allows you to modify the default behavior. You can modify retry attempts, retry timeout and cache timeout. Changing behavior like disabling or lowering cache duration may influence performance.

Property name Windows default value Linux default value Allowed values Description
dnsRetryAttemptCount 1 5 1-5 Defines the number of attempts to resolve where one means no retries.
dnsMaxCacheTimeout 30 0 0-60 Cache timeout defined in seconds. Setting cache to zero means you've disabled caching.
dnsRetryAttemptTimeout 3 1 1-30 Timeout before retrying or failing. Timeout also defines the time to wait for secondary server results if the primary doesn't respond.


  • Changing name resolution behavior is not supported on Windows Container apps.
  • To enable DNS caching on Web App for Containers and Linux-based apps, you must add the app setting WEBSITE_ENABLE_DNS_CACHE. This setting defaults to 30 seconds.

Configure the name resolution behavior by using these CLI commands:

az resource update --resource-group <group-name> --name <app-name> --set properties.dnsConfiguration.dnsMaxCacheTimeout=[0-60] --resource-type "Microsoft.Web/sites"
az resource update --resource-group <group-name> --name <app-name> --set properties.dnsConfiguration.dnsRetryAttemptCount=[1-5] --resource-type "Microsoft.Web/sites"
az resource update --resource-group <group-name> --name <app-name> --set properties.dnsConfiguration.dnsRetryAttemptTimeout=[1-30] --resource-type "Microsoft.Web/sites"

Validate the settings by using this CLI command:

az resource show --resource-group <group-name> --name <app-name> --query properties.dnsConfiguration --resource-type "Microsoft.Web/sites"

Next steps