|WHOIS(1)||General Commands Manual||WHOIS(1)|
whois — Internet
domain name and network number directory service
whois utility looks up records in the
databases maintained by several Network Information Centers (NICs).
The options are as follows:
(Hint: All point of contact handles in the ARIN whois database
end with "
-hoption with an argument of "country-code
whois constructs the name
of a whois server to use from the top-level domain (TLD) of the supplied
(single) argument. For newer generic domains (gTLDs), a lookup for
whois.nic.tld is attempted. For other TLDs, or if this lookup fails,
.whois-servers.net" is appended to
the TLD. This effectively allows a suitable whois server to be selected
automatically for a large number of TLDs.
In the event that an IP address is specified, the whois server
will default to the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN). If a
query to ARIN references APNIC, LACNIC, or RIPE, that server will be
queried also, provided that the
-Q option is not
If the query is not a domain name or IP address,
whois will fall back to
(Hint: Contact information, identified by the term
handle, can be looked up by prefixing
handle " to the NIC handle in
whoisdefaults to the “whois” port listed in /etc/services (port 43).
whoiswill not attempt to lookup the name in the authoritative whois server (if one is listed) nor will it contact InterNic if a lookup fails. This flag has no effect when combined with any other flag.
-coption with an argument of "
The default action, unless directed otherwise with a special name, is to do a very broad search, looking for matches to name in all types of records and most fields (name, nicknames, hostname, net address, etc.) in the database. For more information as to what name operands have special meaning, and how to guide the search, use the special name “help”.
Queries beginning with an exclamation point
!’ are assumed to be NSI contact
handles. Unless a host or domain is specified on the command line,
(whois.networksolutions.com) will be used as the
Similarly, queries beginning with “COCO-” are
assumed to be CORE contact handles. Unless a host or domain is specified on
the command line, (whois.corenic.net) will be used as the
Most types of data, such as domain names and IP addresses, can be
used as arguments to
whois without any options, and
whois will choose the correct whois server to query.
Some exceptions, where
whois will not be able to
handle data correctly, are detailed below.
To obtain contact information about an administrator located in
the Russian TLD domain "
RU", use the
-c option as shown in the following example, where
CONTACT-ID is substituted with the actual contact
whois -c RU CONTACT-ID
(Note: This example is specific to the TLD
RU", but other TLDs can be queried by
using a similar syntax.)
The following example demonstrates how to query a whois server
using a non-standard port, where
query-data” is the query to be sent
whois.example.com” on port
rwhois” (written numerically as
whois -h whois.example.com -p rwhois query-data
K. Harrenstien, M. Stahl, and E. Feinler, NICNAME/WHOIS, RFC 954, October 1985.
L. Daigle, WHOIS Protocol Specification, RFC 3912, September 2004.
whois command appeared in
|February 20, 2016||OpenBSD-current|