Welcome to our blog post that will teach you how to find your DNS server. DNS, short for Domain Name System, is the backbone of the internet, making it possible for us to access websites by their domain names. When you enter a URL into your web browser, your computer contacts a DNS server to translate the domain name into an IP address, allowing you to connect to the website. However, have you ever wondered how to find your DNS server?
Whether you’re troubleshooting a connectivity issue or simply want to know which DNS server your computer is using, we’ve got you covered. In this post, we will show you how to find your DNS server on different platforms, including Windows 10, Mac OS, Android, and iOS. We’ll also discuss common issues with DNS servers and how to fix them.
By the end of this post, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge you need to confidently find your DNS server and troubleshoot any related issues. So, let’s get started!
What is a DNS server and how does it work?
A DNS server is a crucial component of the internet infrastructure that translates domain names into IP addresses, making it possible for devices to connect and communicate with each other. In simpler terms, a DNS server is like a phone book for the internet, translating the easy-to-remember domain names that we type into our web browsers into the IP addresses that devices use to communicate with each other.
When you type a website name into your browser, your computer sends a request to a DNS server, asking it to resolve the domain name to an IP address. The DNS server looks up the IP address associated with that domain name and sends it back to your computer, allowing your browser to connect to the website’s server and load the webpage.
The DNS system is critical to the functioning of the internet. Without it, we would have to remember and type in IP addresses for every website we wanted to visit, which is obviously impractical. However, the DNS system can also be a target for cyber-attacks, as compromising a DNS server can allow attackers to redirect traffic to malicious sites or intercept sensitive information.
Overall, the DNS server is an essential part of the internet infrastructure that enables us to browse the web and access online services with ease. By translating domain names into IP addresses, it plays a vital role in connecting devices and facilitating communication over the internet.
Understanding the DNS server
DNS server stands for Domain Name System server, and it acts as a phone book for the internet, converting domain names into IP addresses.
The DNS server is responsible for translating human-readable domain names into machine-readable IP addresses, which allow devices to communicate with each other over the internet.
When you enter a URL into your web browser, the browser sends a request to a DNS server, which then responds with the IP address of the server hosting the website you want to visit.
Without the DNS server, the internet as we know it would not function, as we would have to remember the IP addresses of every website we wanted to visit, which would be an impossible task.
It is important to understand the role of the DNS server in order to troubleshoot issues and optimize internet performance. Knowing how it works can help you diagnose problems and improve network security.
How DNS servers work
DNS resolution process: When you type a website URL into your browser, your computer sends a request to a DNS resolver, which then finds the IP address of the website through a process called DNS resolution. The resolver communicates with multiple DNS servers to find the IP address of the website and returns the result to your computer, allowing your browser to connect to the website’s server.
DNS caching: DNS servers also use a process called caching to store recent queries. This can speed up the resolution process by providing quick access to frequently requested domain names without having to query other servers. However, it also means that changes made to a domain’s IP address may not be reflected immediately, as the DNS server may continue to use the cached information until it expires.
Authoritative DNS servers: These are DNS servers that have the authoritative information about a domain. When a DNS resolver queries an authoritative DNS server, it can be certain that the information it receives is accurate and up-to-date. Authoritative DNS servers are maintained by the domain owners or their designated providers.
- Root DNS servers: These are the top-level DNS servers that contain information about the root zone, which is the top level of the DNS hierarchy. They maintain information about the top-level domains such as .com, .org, .net, and country code top-level domains such as .uk, .fr, .ca, etc.
- TLD DNS servers: These servers maintain information about specific top-level domains, such as .com or .org.
- Authoritative DNS servers: These are DNS servers that have the authoritative information about a domain. When a DNS resolver queries an authoritative DNS server, it can be certain that the information it receives is accurate and up-to-date. Authoritative DNS servers are maintained by the domain owners or their designated providers.
- Recursive DNS servers: These servers perform DNS resolution on behalf of clients and can query other DNS servers to find the IP address of a domain name. They typically store cached information to speed up the resolution process and are often used by internet service providers (ISPs).
- Forwarding DNS servers: These servers forward DNS queries to other DNS servers. They can be used to reduce the workload of a local DNS server or to filter requests, for example, to block access to certain websites.
- Local DNS servers: These servers are used to resolve domain names for devices on a local network. They can be configured to forward requests to other DNS servers or to perform recursive resolution themselves.
Conclusion: Understanding how DNS servers work is important for anyone who uses the internet, as it affects the speed and accuracy of accessing websites. By using DNS resolution and caching, DNS servers help translate domain names into IP addresses, enabling users to connect to websites and other online resources. Knowing the different types of DNS servers can help you troubleshoot issues related to DNS resolution, such as slow internet speeds or difficulty accessing certain websites.
Why is it important to know your DNS server?
Improved Internet performance: One of the reasons why it’s important to know your DNS server is that it can improve your internet performance. Your internet speed may be slow if you are using a DNS server that’s not reliable or too far away from your location.
Increased security: Another reason why it’s important to know your DNS server is that it can help increase your security online. DNS servers can be used to filter out harmful websites and protect you from malware, phishing attacks, and other cyber threats.
Troubleshooting network issues: Knowing your DNS server can help you troubleshoot network issues. If you’re having problems with your internet connection, it could be due to your DNS server not responding, being down, or misconfigured.
Bypassing geo-restrictions: Some DNS servers can help you bypass geo-restrictions and access content that may be blocked in your region. For example, you can use a DNS server to access US-based content if you live in a country where that content is not available.
Control over your internet experience: Knowing your DNS server can give you more control over your internet experience. You can choose a DNS server that’s tailored to your needs, such as one that’s focused on speed, security, or privacy.
Better Internet experience
Knowing your DNS server can improve your internet experience by providing faster internet speeds and reducing latency. The closer the DNS server is to your device, the faster the response times will be when resolving domain names to IP addresses. Additionally, using a reliable DNS server can prevent internet downtime and reduce the risk of encountering malicious websites.
When you use a DNS server that’s located far away from your device, it can cause slower internet speeds and increase latency. This can make online activities, such as streaming videos or playing games, frustrating and slow. By using a DNS server that’s closer to you, you can experience faster internet speeds and a more responsive internet browsing experience.
Besides providing faster internet speeds, a reliable DNS server can also protect you from malicious websites. DNS servers can identify and block access to websites that contain malware or phishing scams, which can protect you and your personal information from being compromised. By knowing your DNS server, you can ensure that you’re using a reliable and trustworthy service that provides an extra layer of protection against online threats.
Overall, knowing your DNS server can improve your internet experience by providing faster internet speeds, reducing latency, and protecting you from malicious websites. In the following sections, we’ll explain how to find your DNS server on different operating systems, including Windows 10, Mac OS, Android, and iOS devices.
DNS servers can protect you from phishing attacks: Phishing attacks are a common tactic used by cybercriminals to steal sensitive information such as login credentials, credit card details, and more. By using a reputable DNS server, you can help protect yourself from these attacks by preventing your device from connecting to fake or malicious websites.
Block access to malicious sites: DNS servers can help block access to known malicious sites by preventing your device from resolving the IP address associated with those sites. This can help protect your device from malware, ransomware, and other online threats.
Protect your privacy: Some DNS servers offer additional security features such as DNS over HTTPS (DoH) or DNS over TLS (DoT), which encrypt your DNS queries and responses. This can help protect your privacy and prevent eavesdropping by third parties.
Prevent DNS cache poisoning: DNS cache poisoning is a technique used by attackers to redirect your device to a fake website. By using a DNS server with DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extensions) enabled, you can help prevent these types of attacks.
By understanding how DNS servers work and choosing the right DNS server for your needs, you can help improve your online security and protect your privacy.
Troubleshooting network issues
If you are experiencing network issues, such as slow browsing speeds or difficulty connecting to websites, knowing your DNS server can help you troubleshoot the problem.
By checking your DNS server, you can determine if the issue is related to your network configuration or if it is a problem with the server you are trying to connect to.
Additionally, if you are experiencing issues with specific websites, knowing your DNS server can help you determine if the issue is related to the server or if it is a problem with your local network.
Knowing your DNS server can also help you identify and diagnose issues with network security. If your DNS server is not functioning properly, it can leave your network vulnerable to attacks such as phishing scams and malware infections.
By understanding how your DNS server works and regularly checking its status, you can ensure that your network is running smoothly and securely.
How to find your DNS server on Windows 10
If you’re using Windows 10 and want to find your DNS server, you can do so with just a few clicks.
Method 1: Using the Command Prompt
One way to find your DNS server on Windows 10 is to use the Command Prompt. This method involves typing a simple command in the Command Prompt, which will display your DNS server information.
Method 2: Using the Control Panel
Another way to find your DNS server is to use the Control Panel. This method involves navigating through a few menus to find your network adapter settings, where you can view your DNS server information.
Using the Command Prompt
If you’re comfortable with using the Command Prompt, you can quickly find your DNS server on Windows 10 using a simple command. Open the Command Prompt by pressing the Windows key + X and selecting “Command Prompt”. Then type “ipconfig /all” and hit Enter.
A list of information will appear. Look for the line that says “DNS Servers” and you will see the IP address of your DNS server listed next to it.
Once you have the IP address, you can use it to configure your network settings or troubleshoot any issues you may be experiencing with your internet connection.
How to find your DNS server on Mac OS
If you’re a Mac OS user, finding your DNS server is relatively easy. Here are some steps to follow:
Step 1: Open System Preferences from the Apple menu.
Step 2: Click on the Network icon.
Step 3: Select your network connection and click on the Advanced button.
Step 4: Click on the DNS tab to see your DNS server addresses.
If you want to add a DNS server or change your existing DNS server, you can click the “+” or “-” button to add or remove a DNS server, respectively. You can also drag and drop DNS servers to reorder them.
Note: You may need to click the lock icon in the lower-left corner and enter your password to make changes.
Using System Preferences
To find your DNS server on a Mac, you can use the System Preferences menu. First, click on the Apple icon in the top left corner of the screen and select “System Preferences” from the drop-down menu.
Next, click on “Network” and select the type of network you are using from the left-hand menu. For example, if you are connected to Wi-Fi, select “Wi-Fi” from the list.
Then, click on the “Advanced” button in the bottom right corner of the window and select the “DNS” tab. Here you will see a list of DNS servers that your Mac is currently using.
If you need to add or remove DNS servers, you can do so by clicking the “+” or “-” buttons at the bottom of the list and entering the appropriate information.
Using the Terminal
If you prefer using the command line, you can find your DNS server on your Mac using the Terminal app. Here’s how:
Step 1: Open Terminal. You can do this by searching for “Terminal” in the Spotlight search or by navigating to “Applications > Utilities > Terminal”.
Step 2: Type the command “networksetup -getdnsservers Wi-Fi” and press Enter. This command will display the DNS server IP addresses for your Wi-Fi connection. If you’re using a different network interface, replace “Wi-Fi” with the name of your interface.
Step 3: If you have more than one DNS server listed, the first one is the primary server, and the rest are secondary. You can use them to configure your DNS settings or troubleshoot any issues you may be experiencing.
Step 4: To exit Terminal, type “exit” and press Enter.
Using the Terminal can be a quick and efficient way to find your DNS server on Mac OS, especially if you’re comfortable with command line interfaces. However, if you’re not familiar with using Terminal, it’s recommended to use the System Preferences method instead.
Using Network Utility
If you prefer a graphical user interface, you can also find your DNS server using the Network Utility application. To access it:
- Open Spotlight Search by clicking the magnifying glass icon in the upper-right corner of the screen or by pressing Command + Space.
- Type “Network Utility” in the search bar and press Enter.
- Select the “Info” tab.
- In the left-hand menu, select “Wi-Fi” or “Ethernet,” depending on your connection.
- Look for the “Router” field to find your DNS server’s IP address.
- You can also use the “Lookup” function to enter a domain name and see the IP address of the DNS server associated with it.
With Network Utility, you can also perform other network diagnostics and tests, such as ping, traceroute, and port scanning, which can be useful for troubleshooting network issues.
Keep in mind that the Network Utility application may not be available on all versions of macOS. If you can’t find it, you can use the Terminal method described earlier or try using a third-party network utility tool.
How to find your DNS server on Android
If you’re having trouble connecting to the internet on your Android device, one potential issue could be with your DNS server. Here are a few steps to help you find your DNS server:
Step 1: Open the Settings app on your Android device.
Step 2: Scroll down and tap on “Wi-Fi”.
Step 3: Long-press on the Wi-Fi network you’re currently connected to, and then tap “Modify network”.
Step 4: Tap on “Advanced options”.
Step 5: Scroll down to the “IP settings” section and select “Static”.
Once you’ve selected “Static”, you should see fields for the IP address, gateway, and DNS server. Your DNS server information will be listed in the DNS server field.
Using Wi-Fi settings
If you want to find the DNS server on your Android device, you can do so through the Wi-Fi settings. Follow these steps:
- Open the “Settings” app on your Android device.
- Tap “Wi-Fi”.
- Long-press on the name of the Wi-Fi network you’re connected to.
- Select “Modify network” from the pop-up menu.
- Tap “Advanced options”.
- Scroll down to the “IP settings” section and select “Static”.
You should now see the DNS server fields. The primary and secondary DNS servers are listed here, along with any other custom DNS servers you’ve added. If you want to change the DNS server, simply edit the fields and tap “Save”.
Remember that changing the DNS server can affect your browsing speed and privacy. Make sure you choose a reliable DNS server with a good reputation and consider using a VPN for extra security.
Using a DNS app
If you’re not comfortable using the command prompt or navigating the settings, you can use a DNS app to find your DNS server on Android. There are many DNS apps available in the Google Play Store, including DNS Changer, 184.108.40.206, and dnspipe. These apps will display your current DNS server and allow you to change it if necessary.
To use a DNS app, simply download it from the Google Play Store and open it. The app will automatically detect your current DNS server and display it on the screen. If you want to change your DNS server, you can do so through the app’s settings. Some DNS apps may also offer additional features, such as ad-blocking or encryption.
Using a DNS app can be a convenient way to find and change your DNS server on Android. However, it’s important to use a reputable app from a trusted developer, as some apps may contain malware or compromise your privacy. Always read reviews and do your research before downloading a DNS app.
Using the Terminal Emulator app
If you prefer to use the command line, you can use the Terminal Emulator app to find your DNS server on Android:
- Step 1: Download and install the Terminal Emulator app from the Google Play Store.
- Step 2: Open the app and type
getprop net.dns1into the terminal.
- Step 3: Press “Enter” to execute the command.
- Step 4: The DNS server address should be displayed on the screen.
- Note: If the command above doesn’t work, try typing
- Tip: You can also use other commands like
cat /etc/resolv.confto get information about your DNS server.
Using the Terminal Emulator app to find your DNS server on Android can be a useful option for those who prefer the command line interface and want to quickly access the information they need.
Remember that changing your DNS server can have an impact on your device’s internet connectivity, so make sure to research and choose a reliable and secure DNS server before making any changes.
Now that you know how to find your DNS server on Android using the Terminal Emulator app, you can easily access and check this information whenever you need to.
How to find your DNS server on iOS
iOS Settings: Open the Settings app, tap Wi-Fi, then tap the information icon next to your connected Wi-Fi network. Scroll down to the DNS section to see the IP address of your DNS server.
Third-party apps: There are several free and paid apps available in the App Store that can help you find your DNS server, such as DNS Override and DNS Changer.
Router settings: Log in to your router’s web interface using a browser, and find the DNS settings. The IP address listed here is the DNS server your router is using.
Using the Terminal app: If your iOS device is jailbroken, you can use the Terminal app to view your DNS server information. Open the Terminal app and type “cat /etc/resolv.conf” to see your DNS server IP address.
Carrier settings: Some mobile carriers may use their own DNS servers. Contact your carrier’s customer support to find out the IP address of their DNS servers.
Using Wi-Fi settings
If you want to find your DNS server on your iOS device, you can start by checking your Wi-Fi settings. To do this:
- Open the “Settings” app on your device.
- Select “Wi-Fi.”
- Find the Wi-Fi network you are connected to and tap the “i” icon next to it.
Under the “DNS” section, you will see the IP address of your DNS server. If you want to change your DNS server, tap on “Configure DNS” and add the IP address of your preferred DNS server.
Note: Some Wi-Fi networks may use a DHCP-assigned DNS server, in which case you will not see the DNS server listed in the Wi-Fi settings.
Using the DNS Override app
The DNS Override app is a third-party app that allows you to override the default DNS server on your iOS device. Here are some steps to use the app:
- Step 1: Download and install the DNS Override app from the App Store.
- Step 2: Open the app and grant it the necessary permissions.
- Step 3: Tap on the plus (+) icon to add a new DNS server.
- Step 4: Enter the DNS server address and a name for the server (optional).
- Step 5: Save the changes and toggle the switch next to the newly added server to enable it.
- Step 6: Connect to Wi-Fi and test the new DNS server by opening a website or app.
The DNS Override app also allows you to create different profiles with different DNS servers, which you can switch between easily depending on your needs. Additionally, you can use the app to create custom DNS rules for specific domains or websites, which can be useful for blocking ads or accessing geo-restricted content.
One thing to keep in mind is that using a third-party DNS server can potentially slow down your internet connection or affect its security. Therefore, it’s important to use a reputable DNS provider and to do your research before making any changes to your DNS settings.
Common issues with DNS servers and how to fix them
Dealing with DNS servers can be frustrating at times, especially when you encounter errors or connectivity issues. One of the most common issues with DNS servers is a slow response time, which can be caused by various factors such as network congestion, server overload, or misconfigured settings. To fix this, try clearing your browser cache and resetting your DNS settings to default. Alternatively, switch to a different DNS server like Google DNS or OpenDNS to improve your connection speed.
Another issue that can arise with DNS servers is when your computer is unable to connect to the server, resulting in a DNS error. This can happen due to a number of reasons, such as incorrect IP address configuration or server unavailability. To troubleshoot this issue, try restarting your router, checking your firewall settings, or running a malware scan to ensure that your computer is not infected with any viruses that may be disrupting your connection.
One more problem that may occur with DNS servers is when your domain name is not resolving properly, resulting in a 404 error or a blank page. This may be caused by an incorrect DNS record, server misconfiguration, or an expired domain name. To resolve this, check your DNS records to ensure they are up-to-date and correct, renew your domain name if it has expired, and double-check your server settings to make sure everything is configured properly.
Common issues with DNS servers and how to fix them
Slow internet connection
A slow internet connection is one of the most frustrating issues you can encounter, especially when trying to stream videos or download large files. Here are a few potential causes and solutions to this common issue:
- Bandwidth congestion: Check to see if other devices on your network are using up too much bandwidth. If so, try disconnecting them or limiting their usage to free up more bandwidth for your own use.
- Outdated router: If your router is old, it may not be able to handle modern internet speeds. Consider upgrading to a newer model to improve your connection.
- Network interference: If you are using Wi-Fi, there may be physical obstacles like walls or other devices causing interference with your signal. Move your router closer to your device or try using an ethernet cable to see if that improves your connection.
- ISP issues: Contact your internet service provider to see if there are any issues with your account or service in your area.
- Malware: Malware can use up your internet bandwidth and slow down your connection. Run a malware scan on your device to ensure it is clean.
- Hardware issues: If all else fails, there may be an issue with your device’s hardware. Consider taking it to a professional for repair or replacement.
By identifying and addressing the root cause of your slow internet connection, you can get back to browsing and streaming with ease.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a DNS server?
Before you start looking for a DNS server, it is essential to understand what it is. A DNS server is a computer server that translates domain names into IP addresses. It acts as a directory for the internet, helping you access websites by matching their domain names with their corresponding IP addresses. Without a DNS server, you would have to remember the IP address of every website you want to visit.
Why do you need to find your DNS server?
You might need to find your DNS server for various reasons. For instance, if you are having internet connectivity issues or are unable to access certain websites, checking your DNS server can help you identify the problem. Additionally, changing your DNS server can help you improve your internet speed and security. It is also essential to know your DNS server’s location if you want to set up a virtual private network (VPN) connection to protect your internet traffic.