This page is intended for experienced users only. If you follow these instructions, you are not protected from footguns elimited with the introduction of the kres-manager. However, if you want to continue using Knot Resolver the same as before the version 6.0.0 this is a chapter for you.

For new and less experienced users, we recommend using the newer approach starting in the Getting Started chapter.

Usage without the manager

There are a few downsides to using the Knot Resolver without the manager:.

  • Configuration is a imperative Lua script and can’t be properly validated without actually running it.

  • kresd is single-threaded so you need to manage multiple processes manually.

  • Restarts without downtime after configuration change are only your responsibility.


The older way to start Knot Resolver is to run single instance of its resolving daemon manualy using kresd@ systemd integration. The daemon is single thread process.

$ sudo systemctl start kresd@1.service


For more information about systemd integration see man kresd.systemd.


You can configure kresd by pasting your Lua code into /etc/knot-resolver/kresd.conf configuration script. The resolver’s daemon is preconfigure to load this script when using kresd@ systemd integration.


The configuration language is in fact Lua script, so you can use full power of this programming language. See article Learn Lua in 15 minutes for a syntax overview.

The first thing you need to configure are the network interfaces to listen to.

The following example instructs the resolver to receive standard unencrypted DNS queries on IP addresses and 2001:db8::1. Encrypted DNS queries are accepted using DNS-over-TLS protocol on all IP addresses configured on network interface eth0, TCP port 853.

-- unencrypted DNS on port 53 is default

net.listen(net.eth0, 853, { kind = 'tls' })

Complete configurations files examples can be found here. The example configuration files are also installed as documentation files, typically in directory /usr/share/doc/knot-resolver/examples/ (their location may be different based on your Linux distribution).


When copy&pasting examples please pay close attention to brackets and also line ordering - order of lines matters.