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[Legacy] Setting up Mobility Print DNS with MacOS Server DNS


macOS Server support:

It’s worth noting that Apple has announced that DNS is amongst the services being deprecated from macOS Server, in Spring 2018. Take a look at this article from Apple for more information:

Also - if you’re looking for great advice on setting up BIND in general, head over to the A better BIND Mobility record setup, a better you! article.

Can you set up the Mobility Print DNS records on a MacOS server?

Actually yes! Under the hood, a MacOS Server uses BIND for its DNS service. To illustrate this point, on your macOS server, take a look in /Library/Server/named/ - and you’ll see several files relating to the zones that you’ve set up in the DNS service, through the server app.

However, there are several things that you should know before beginning:

  • These changes cannot be made in the GUI, and instead require editing BIND DNS configuration files to set up.
  • You cannot use one server as the Mobility Print server and DNS server, these roles must be separated. The reason for this is that the Mobility Print application and DNS will both try to listen and respond to DNS queries, with mixed results. This means that you will need a separate server for DNS and for Mobility Print.
  • You’ll need to perform the following tasks as root, or at least sudo to be able to complete these tasks.

Setting up the Zone file:

In the zone file for the domain you’re interested in (for example, I’m using as my test domain - so I would then edit the file /Library/Server/named/, paste in the following PTR records at the end of the file:

b._dns-sd._udp IN PTR pc-printer-discovery.
lb._dns-sd._udp IN PTR pc-printer-discovery.

Note the extra ‘.’ after the pc-printer-discovery entry. Also note that the other pc-printer-discovery and print-server-host records are not needed here.

For example, below you can see the zone file for

Setting up the named.conf file:

Next, in the same directory, edit your named.conf file to contain an extra zone entry at the end of the file (before the final closing “}” ):

       zone "pc-printer-discovery" {
               type forward;
               forwarders {

Where x.x.x.x is the IP address of your Mobility Server (note that you cannot run Mobility Print on the same server as your DNS service).

For example below you can see the pc-printer-discovery entry, and is the address of the Mobility Server:

Make the changes live:

Make sure the changes are saved to both files and then restart your DNS service (e.g. toggle the Service ‘ON’ button in newer versions of the macOS Server app).

For example below the DNS server address is


From a test workstation, you should then be able to check the discovery of printers, through the pc-printer-discovery URLs on the Troubleshooting Mobility Print page under the ‘Check the configuration from a particular subnet or device type’ section.

Note that the testing above was done with a Mac running macOS High Sierra 10.13.3, and with Server App version 5.5.

For more information about Mobility Print, check out the Mobility Print Help Center.

Categories: How-to Articles , Mobility Print , Installing, Uninstalling and Migrating

Keywords: mobility print , macOS , server , BIND , dns


Last updated October 25, 2022