If you’ve ever been frustrated with slow internet speeds or websites that won’t load, your DNS server might be to blame. But what exactly is a DNS server? Why do you need to know what yours is? And most importantly, how can you obtain it quickly and easily? In this article, we’ll answer all those questions and more.
A DNS server is essentially the phonebook of the internet. When you type a URL into your browser, your computer sends a request to your DNS server, which then translates that URL into an IP address that your computer can understand. Without a DNS server, you wouldn’t be able to access any websites by typing in their URLs.
Knowing your DNS server can be useful for a variety of reasons. For one, it can help you troubleshoot internet connection issues. Additionally, you may want to change your DNS server for security or privacy reasons. Whatever your reason for needing to obtain your DNS server, we’ve got you covered with this step-by-step guide.
Keep reading to learn how to quickly and easily obtain your DNS server, as well as how to change it and which ones are the best to use. With this information, you’ll be able to improve your internet connection speed and security in no time.
What is a DNS server?
If you are not a tech-savvy person, you might be wondering what a DNS server is. DNS stands for Domain Name System, and it is like a phonebook of the internet. Essentially, it is a system that translates human-friendly domain names like www.google.com into computer-readable IP addresses like 220.127.116.11This process is called DNS resolution, and it is essential for browsing the web.
Without a DNS server, you would need to remember the IP addresses of all the websites you visit, which is not practical. A DNS server acts as an intermediary between your device and the internet, and it plays a critical role in making the internet easy to use.
When you type a domain name into your browser, your device sends a query to a DNS server, asking for the IP address of the website you want to visit. The DNS server then responds with the correct IP address, and your device can establish a connection to the website.
In essence, a DNS server is the backbone of the internet, and without it, we would not be able to access the wealth of information available on the web.
Definition of DNS server
A DNS server, also known as a Domain Name System server, is a type of computer server that stores a database of domain names and their associated IP addresses. It acts as a phone book for the internet, translating human-readable domain names, like google.com, into machine-readable IP addresses, like 18.104.22.168.
DNS servers work on a hierarchical system, with the top-level servers containing information about the domain name extensions (.com, .org, .edu, etc.), and lower-level servers containing information about specific domain names within those extensions. When a device needs to access a website or online service, it sends a request to its configured DNS server, which then searches its database or forwards the request to another server higher up in the hierarchy.
Without a DNS server, users would need to remember and manually enter IP addresses for every website or service they want to access. DNS servers make the process of accessing websites and services much simpler and more efficient.
Overall, a DNS server is a critical component of the internet infrastructure, enabling users to access websites and services by using human-readable domain names, and freeing them from the need to remember and enter IP addresses.
How DNS servers work?
When you type a website address in your browser, the browser sends a request to your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to find the IP address associated with the domain name. The ISP then queries its own DNS servers to get the IP address. If the ISP’s DNS server doesn’t have the IP address, it will query other DNS servers on the Internet until it finds the IP address. Once the IP address is found, it is returned to your browser, allowing it to connect to the website’s server.
The DNS server works like a phonebook. Instead of looking up someone’s phone number, it looks up the IP address associated with a domain name. Every device connected to the internet, including your computer, has a unique IP address. The DNS server ensures that when you type in a website address, you are directed to the correct IP address associated with that website.
The DNS system is hierarchical, with the root server at the top. There are 13 root servers in the world, which are managed by different organizations. The root server does not store IP addresses but rather points to the top-level domain (TLD) servers, such as .com, .org, .gov, etc. Each TLD server manages the domain names for its respective domain.
Why do you need to know your DNS server?
Improved network performance: Knowing your DNS server can help improve network performance by allowing you to optimize the configuration of your network.
Enhanced security: Understanding your DNS server can also help you keep your network secure by allowing you to identify potential security risks and take appropriate measures to address them.
Troubleshooting: Knowing your DNS server can be extremely helpful when troubleshooting network issues. If you’re experiencing problems with your network, being able to identify your DNS server can help you diagnose the problem and find a solution more quickly.
Customization: By knowing your DNS server, you can also customize your network settings to meet your specific needs. This can include improving website loading times or accessing geo-restricted content.
Improve internet speed by changing DNS server
When you access a website, your computer needs to communicate with a DNS server to find the IP address associated with the domain name. If your DNS server is slow or unresponsive, this can lead to slower internet speeds and longer page load times. By changing your DNS server to a faster and more reliable option, you can improve your internet speed and overall browsing experience.
When you change your DNS server, you are telling your computer to use a different server to look up IP addresses. This can result in faster response times and quicker page loads. In some cases, you may also be able to access websites that were previously blocked by your previous DNS server.
There are many public DNS servers available that you can use for free. Some popular options include Google DNS, Cloudflare DNS, and OpenDNS. Each of these servers has its own benefits and drawbacks, so it’s worth experimenting with different options to see which one works best for you.
Overall, changing your DNS server can be a simple and effective way to improve your internet speed and browsing experience. With just a few clicks, you can switch to a faster and more reliable server and enjoy faster page loads and smoother browsing.
Ensure internet safety with a reliable DNS server
DNS servers can prevent phishing scams: Many phishing scams involve creating fake websites that mimic legitimate ones in order to trick people into entering their personal information. A good DNS server can detect these fake websites and block them, helping to keep you safe from scams.
DNS servers can block access to malicious websites: Some websites may contain malware or other harmful content that can harm your computer or compromise your privacy. By using a DNS server with built-in security features, you can prevent access to these dangerous sites.
DNS servers can help protect your privacy: Some DNS servers may collect and sell your browsing data to advertisers or other third parties. By using a reliable DNS server that does not log your browsing activity, you can help protect your online privacy.
DNS servers can protect against DNS cache poisoning: DNS cache poisoning is a type of cyberattack that involves corrupting a DNS server’s cache with false information. This can redirect users to fake websites or even allow attackers to intercept and steal sensitive data. A reliable DNS server can help protect against this type of attack.
Bypass internet censorship with a DNS server
If you are living in a country where internet censorship is a common practice, then a DNS server can help you bypass this restriction. Some countries limit access to certain websites and services, which can be frustrating for people who rely on the internet for work or personal reasons. By using a DNS server, you can circumvent this censorship and gain access to the content you need.
Many DNS servers offer features that can help you bypass censorship, such as encrypted queries, which can prevent your internet service provider from knowing what websites you are trying to access. Some DNS servers also offer virtual private network (VPN) services, which can further help you bypass censorship and keep your internet activity private.
It’s important to note that using a DNS server to bypass censorship may not be legal in some countries. Before using a DNS server for this purpose, make sure to research the laws in your country and the potential consequences of using a DNS server to bypass internet censorship.
How to find your DNS server on Windows?
DNS settings play an essential role in determining how quickly and efficiently your computer can connect to websites and online services. On Windows, finding your DNS server is a straightforward process.
One way to find your DNS server is by accessing the Command Prompt and typing in ipconfig /all. This will display all the network adapters and their associated DNS servers.
You can also find your DNS server by going to the Control Panel, clicking on Network and Internet, and then selecting Network and Sharing Center. From there, click on your active network connection and select Properties. Finally, click on Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) and then click on Properties again to see your DNS server settings.
If you prefer a more user-friendly method, you can download third-party software that can automatically detect and display your DNS server settings for you.
Using Command Prompt
Step 1: Open the Command Prompt by pressing the Windows key + R and typing “cmd” in the Run box.
Step 2: Type “ipconfig /all” and press Enter.
Step 3: Scroll down to the “DNS Servers” line and the IP address next to it is your DNS server address.
Step 4: You can also type “nslookup” and press Enter, then type “set type=all” and press Enter again. The DNS server address will be displayed next to “Server:”.
How to find your DNS server on Mac?
Option 1: System Preferences
Open System Preferences on your Mac.
Click on the Network icon.
Select the network connection you are using from the left panel.
Click on the Advanced button in the lower right corner.
Click on the DNS tab.
Your DNS server addresses will be listed in the left panel.
Option 2: Terminal
Open Terminal on your Mac.
Type the following command and hit Enter:
networksetup -getdnsservers Wi-Fi (Replace “Wi-Fi” with the name of your network connection if different).
Your DNS server addresses will be displayed in the Terminal window.
Option 3: Third-Party Apps
There are several third-party apps available in the App Store that can help you find your DNS server on Mac, such as DNS Lookup, Network Analyzer, and IP Scanner. These apps provide more advanced features and tools to manage your network settings.
Using System Preferences
To find your DNS server on a Mac using System Preferences, follow these steps:
- Click on the Apple icon in the upper-left corner of the screen and select “System Preferences.”
- Click on the “Network” icon in the System Preferences window.
- Select the network connection you are currently using from the list on the left-hand side of the window.
- Click on the “Advanced” button in the bottom-right corner of the window.
- Click on the “DNS” tab in the Advanced Network Settings window.
- You should now see a list of DNS servers listed under the “DNS Servers” section. The IP addresses for the DNS servers will be listed on the right-hand side of the screen.
By following these steps, you can easily find the DNS server information for your Mac and make any necessary changes to improve your internet connection and security.
How to change your DNS server?
If you want to change your DNS server, you can follow the steps below:
Step 1: Open the Control Panel on your computer.
Step 2: Click on “Network and Internet” and then “Network and Sharing Center”.
Step 3: Click on “Change adapter settings” on the left side of the window.
Step 4: Right-click on the network connection you want to change the DNS server for and select “Properties”.
Step 5: Select “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)” and click on “Properties”.
Step 6: Select “Use the following DNS server addresses” and enter the new DNS server addresses in the Preferred DNS server and Alternate DNS server fields.
Step 7: Click “OK” and then “Close” to save the changes.
Note: The steps may vary slightly depending on your operating system and version.
Changing DNS server on Windows
If you want to change your DNS server on Windows, follow these simple steps:
- Open the Control Panel: Click on the Start menu, then click on the Control Panel option.
- Open Network and Sharing Center: In the Control Panel, click on the Network and Sharing Center option.
- Change adapter settings: In the Network and Sharing Center, click on the Change adapter settings option.
- Open properties: Right-click on the network connection you want to change the DNS server for, and select Properties.
- Change DNS server: In the Properties window, select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) or Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6), depending on your network configuration, and then click on the Properties button. In the next window, select the “Use the following DNS server addresses” option and enter your desired DNS server addresses.
- Save changes: Click on the OK button to save your changes.
Once you have completed these steps, your computer will start using the new DNS server addresses you entered, and you should notice an improvement in your internet speed, security, and bypassing of censorship.
Changing DNS server on Mac
If you’re using a Mac, you can change your DNS server settings in just a few simple steps.
- First, click on the Apple menu and select “System Preferences”.
- Next, click on “Network” and select the network connection you’re using (Wi-Fi or Ethernet).
- Click on “Advanced” and then select the “DNS” tab.
- Click on the “+” button to add a new DNS server address.
- Type in the new DNS server address and click “OK”.
- Finally, click “Apply” to save the changes.
Once you’ve changed your DNS server settings on your Mac, you should see an improvement in your internet speed and security.
What are the best DNS servers to use?
If you’re looking to improve your internet speed and security, using a third-party DNS server may be the way to go. Here are three of the best options:
Google DNS: Google’s public DNS server is fast, reliable, and easy to set up. Its IP addresses are 22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199, and it also offers support for DNS-over-TLS and DNS-over-HTTPS.
Cloudflare DNS: Cloudflare’s DNS server, known as 188.8.131.52, is another popular choice. It’s known for its speed and security, and it also supports DNS-over-TLS and DNS-over-HTTPS.
OpenDNS: OpenDNS is a Cisco-owned DNS service that offers customizable content filtering, security features, and parental controls. Its IP addresses are 184.108.40.206 and 220.127.116.11.
These are just a few of the many DNS servers available. When choosing a DNS server, consider factors such as speed, security, and privacy features, as well as the server’s reliability and ease of setup.
Google Public DNS
Google Public DNS is a free, global Domain Name System (DNS) resolution service that anyone can use. It is one of the most popular DNS servers, and it’s known for its fast and reliable service. Google Public DNS uses anycast routing to direct user requests to the nearest data center for faster response times. It also supports DNS-over-HTTPS and DNS-over-TLS, which encrypt DNS queries and responses for added security.
Google Public DNS has two IP addresses: 18.104.22.168 and 8.8.4.These are easy to remember and can be used as primary and secondary DNS servers. To use Google Public DNS, simply go to your network settings and replace your current DNS server addresses with these IP addresses. You can also use the Google Public DNS test page to check if it’s working correctly.
One of the benefits of using Google Public DNS is that it can help to speed up your internet browsing experience. By resolving domain names faster, web pages can load quicker. Additionally, it can also provide more accurate results for domain name queries, which can improve your overall online experience.
What is Cloudflare DNS?
Cloudflare DNS is a free, fast, and privacy-focused domain name system (DNS) service provided by Cloudflare, a popular content delivery network provider. It was launched in 2018, and it aims to improve internet performance and privacy by offering an alternative to traditional DNS services.
How to use Cloudflare DNS?
To use Cloudflare DNS, you need to update your network settings and configure your device to use Cloudflare’s DNS servers. You can find the instructions on Cloudflare’s website for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, routers, and other devices.
What are the benefits of using Cloudflare DNS?
Cloudflare DNS offers several benefits, including faster page loading times, improved security and privacy, and protection against malicious websites and phishing scams. It also supports DNS-over-HTTPS (DoH) and DNS-over-TLS (DoT) protocols, which encrypt DNS queries and make them more secure.
How does Cloudflare DNS compare to other DNS services?
Cloudflare DNS is one of the fastest DNS services available, and it consistently outperforms other popular DNS services such as Google DNS and OpenDNS. In addition, it has a strong focus on privacy and security, and it does not log or sell user data. Cloudflare DNS is a good choice for those who want a fast and secure DNS service that respects their privacy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a DNS server and why is it important?
A DNS server is a computer that contains a database of public IP addresses and their associated domain names. It is important because it translates domain names into IP addresses, making it possible for users to access websites and services on the internet.
How do I change my DNS server?
You can change your DNS server by accessing your network settings and manually entering the new DNS server addresses. On Windows and Mac computers, you can change your DNS server through the Control Panel or System Preferences, respectively. You can also change your DNS server on your router to apply the changes to all devices on your network.
What are some recommended DNS servers to use?
Some recommended DNS servers to use are Google Public DNS, Cloudflare DNS, and OpenDNS. These DNS servers offer faster speeds, increased security, and improved reliability compared to default DNS servers provided by ISPs.