CLI variables

With dnscontrol you can pass variables from CLI into your dnsconfig.js. This gives you the opportunity to run different code when a value is passed.

1. Passing variables

To pass a variable from CLI, just use the parameter -v key=value of the commands preview or push.

Example: dnscontrol push -v testKey=testValue

This would pass the variable with the name testKey and the value of testValue to dnsconfig.js

2. Define defaults

If you want to define some default values, that are used when no variable is passed from CLI, you can do this with the following function:

  'testValue': 'defaultValue'

You need to define this defaults just once in your dnsconfig.js. Define the defaults before using it.

Please keep in mind, if there is no default value and you do not pass a variable, but you are using it in your dnsconfig.js it will fail!

3. Use cases

See some use cases for CLI variables.

Different IPs for internal/external DNS

  'cliServer': 'external'
if (this.view == "internal") {
    var host01 = "";
    var host02 = "";
} else {
    var host01 = "";
    var host02 = "";

D("", registrar, DnsProvider(public), DnsProvider(bind),
  A('sitea', host01, TTL(1800)),
  A('siteb', host01, TTL(1800)),
  A('sitec', host02, TTL(1800)),
  A('sited', host02, TTL(1800))

Running dnscontrol push -v view=internal would generate the zone for your internal dns.

Just running dnscontrol push would generate the zone for your external dns.

So you can use the same zone for external and internal resolution and there is no need to duplicate it.


The cli variables functionality permits you to create very complex and sophisticated configurations, but you shouldn’t. Be nice to the next person that edits the file, who may not be as expert as yourself.