PTR record vs. A record

PTR record

The PTR record is also referred to as a pointer record and is one of the fundamental types of DNS records. It could operate both with an IPv4 address or IPv6 address. It has a very important purpose which is to link a particular IP address with the associated domain name. 

Thanks to it, it is possible to examine and determine that the specific IP address corresponds with the real domain name. In addition, the pointer record is able to prove that there is not some kind of scam behind it. With the PTR record, it is a simple task to verify different services or elements. It is important to note that the PTR record can exist in a Master Reverse Zone.

Structure of the PTR record

The structure of the PTR record is very simple. Here is what is inside it:

  • Type: PTR.
  • Host: Here is the IP address (IPV4 address or IPv6 address). 
  • Points to: Here is the domain name. 
  • TTL: Here is the TTL (time-to-live) value of the PTR record. Normally, it is not necessary to be low.

A record

The A record is one of the main DNS resource records, and it is often called address record. Its goal responsibility is to associate the specific domain name to its corresponding IP address (IPv4). Therefore, when a user wants to connect and explore a particular website, its browser requires precisely the A record to fulfill its request. That provides the browser the capability to know where exactly it hosted the website, so as a result, it is able to connect to it.

The A record holds an IPv4 address that is a 32-bit address that includes 4 combinations of numbers. For illustration, it simply looks like this:

There is an opportunity for one host to have multiple A records. In such situations, the request for that particular domain name is going to point to various locations. This approach is often used for achieving faster DNS resolution, load balancing, and redundancy. The place to add the A record is the Master DNS zone. 

Structure of the A record

The A record includes the following several pieces of information:

  • Type: A
  • Host: Here is the hostname, such as
  • To: Here is the IPv4 address ( 
  • TTL: Here is the TTL (time-to-live) value for the DNS record.

PTR record vs. A record

In the comparison of a PTR record vs. A record, you are going to notice that they are actually exactly the opposite of one another. The pointer record resolves an IP address (IPv4 or IPv6) to a domain name or a hostname. On the other hand, the A record links a particular domain name (hostname) to an IP address (IPv4). 

Another thing that is important to mention about PTR record vs. A record is the fact that they exist in different DNS zones. For illustration, the Pointer record is only capable of existing in the Master Reverse Zone. In contrast, the address record could be stored in the Forward Master DNS zone.

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