1. Executive Summary
In principle, there is no technical reason why a hostname of ox.ac.uk may not exist; indeed, similar DNS records exist for many other domains. However, the introduction of such a hostname may present us with problems in the future, and cause difficulties with the operation of certain non-web services. We have therefore been reluctant to add such records because of the potential implications, which may only become apparent many years hence.
If this sounds far-fetched, remember that for much of the 1990's Email was the dominant protocol, and unit.ox.ac.uk was often used for UNIX log-in systems. Is the University able to predict what will happen in the next ten years? There are sufficient warning signs to make Hostmaster recommend that ox.ac.uk and unit.ox.ac.uk be left alone.