To detect the presence of NO, ROS and RNS in nodules of crack entry legumes, we used Arachis hypogaea functional nodule. The response of two cognate partner rhizobia was compared towards NO and GSNO using S. meliloti and Bradyrhizobium sp NC921001. ROS, NO, nitrosothiol and bacteroids were detected by fluorescence microscopy. Redox enzymes and thiol pools were detected biochemically. Nitrosothiols were found to be present but ROS and NO were absent in A. hypogaea nodule. A number of S-nitrosylated proteins were also detected. The total thiol pool and most of the redox enzymes were low in nodule cytosolic extract but these were found to be high in the partner microorganisms indicating partner rhizobia could protect the nodule environment against the nitrosothiols. Both S. meliloti and Bradyrhizobium sp NC921001 were found to contain GSNO reductase. Interestingly, there was a marked difference in growth pattern between S. meliloti and Bradyrhizobium sp in presence of sodium nitroprusside (SNP) and S-nitrosoglutathione (GSNO). Bradyrhizobium sp was found to be much more tolerant to NO donor compounds than the S. meliloti. In contrast, S. meliloti showed resistance to GSNO but was sensitive to SNP. Together our data indicate that nodule environment of crack entry legumes is different than the nodules of infection mode entry in terms of NO, ROS and RNS. Based on our biochemical characterization, we propose that exchange of redox molecules and reactive chemical species is possible between the bacteroid and nodule compartment. © 2012 Maiti et al.