A data source is an object within the NS1 platform that is associated with an NS1 monitor, third-party integration, or a native NS1 API data source. Each data source observes an endpoint in your network and communicates status changes back to the relevant data source object configured in the NS1 platform. Once notified of a change, the data source engages its associated data feeds to update the relevant DNS resources (records or answers). All types of data sources use similar methods to ingest, process, and distribute the data to the edge. The DNS servers use this real-time data to inform traffic routing decisions.
There are different types of data sources (native and third-party) you can configure to send data to the NS1 platform:
Follow the instructions below to create a new data source in the NS1 portal.
Navigate to the Integrations page from the main navigation.
Click the + icon in the upper right corner.
Select a data source type.
Enter a name for the data source (and complete any other requested form fields).
The information requested varies depending on the type of data source you are creating.
Click Create Data Source.
Optionally, click Create a new feed with this data source? to create the first data feed associated with this data source. A data feed represents one of the endpoints (e.g., server or facility) the data source is monitoring. If you'd prefer to do this later, edit the modal and the new data source appears in the list.
Enter a name for the data feed (for internal reference) and complete any additional form fields. For example, when creating an NS1 API data source, you must enter a label (a brief, non-breaking string representing the service this feed is for like a server or facility name).
The new data source and feed appear in the list under Incoming Feeds.
After creating a data source and one or more associated data feeds, you can connect each data feed to the relevant answer(s) specified within a DNS record. This allows you to configure automatic updates from a data source to ensure the NS1 platform considers the latest information (e.g., up/down status of an endpoint, load-related data, etc.) when making DNS traffic routing decisions.
For example, you can create a data source with multiple data feeds — one for each monitored endpoint. Then, you can create a DNS record, adding multiple "answers" to the record corresponding to the same endpoints. You can connect the data feed to the corresponding DNS answer via the answer metadata. If you connect the data feed to the "Up/down" metadata field, the data feed will automatically update the answer metadata based on the current status of the endpoint.
After connecting the data feeds to the answers, you can create a Filter Chain configuration within the DNS record to define the specific processing logic the NS1 platform should use when making traffic routing decisions. Each filter in the Filter Chain references one or more metadata fields within each answer.