I've now pulled my hair for hours trying to set a permanent DNS server setting to no avail. Google is very much not my friend right now. No matter what I change, 'system-resolve --status' keeps giving the dns addresses given by dhcp.

I've done all of the steps outlined in this blog (which I found using bad words): https://agaric.gitlab.io/raw-notes/notes/2019-10-22-change-what-dns-server-is-used-for-nameserver-lookups-in-ubuntu-18/

In short, I've installed resolvconf, set static ip and dns through netplan, edited dhclient.conf with 'supersede' etc, but still system is using dhcp dns. I don't want to change the dhcp shared dns because I'm doing a test joining an Ubuntu to a Windows domain so I don't want the entire network using that dns. But I just can't understand (or find an explaination) of how the dns resolver works and how to change it.

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    You haven't said what OS & release you are using, and somewhat importantly if it's a desktop or server (there are differences). (details in the heading need to also be in the question itself, as some devices/browsers display only question text when question is opened)
    – guiverc
    Oct 27 '20 at 21:49
  • Telling us which remote procedure (RP) you "followed" doesn't help us help you for N reasons: 1) It's remote. Will the link exist tomorrow? 2) Reading the RP doesn't tell us how accurately you "followed" it. Did you suffer typos or missed lines? We have. 3) Reading the RP omits the error messages you got on your system. These error messages (and the commands that caused them) are key elements in any diagnosis.
    – waltinator
    Oct 27 '20 at 23:58
  • How are you testing your DNS server? Increasingly, things like DoH are being used, which ignores local DNS settings. Firefox recently switched to DoH so if you are testing your DNS server using Firefox and DoH is enabled, you're going to get a false result.
    – Nmath
    Nov 4 '20 at 16:25
  • > You haven't said what OS & release you are using Yes I did, in the headline. Ubuntu 20.04. Nov 5 '20 at 17:53
  • > Telling us which remote procedure (RP) you "followed" doesn't help us help you I also described in short words what I did, after the link. If you would be able to help, you'd know what these mean. If you're not able, then thanks anyway. Nov 5 '20 at 17:56

I fail to see the productivity of certain replies, but thanks for trying. As I've asked around, it seems the DNS client system of Ubuntu 20.04 is a bit messed up as you cannot set a static DNS server address. It needs to be given by DHCP. Unless, maybe, if you set a static ip all together, I haven't tried that I believe.

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