There are several reasons, why you may want to change your DNS server.
- Some websites do not open from your network but work fine on mobile data
- Web sites are loading slower than usual
- You want to enable parental control or block certain websites
And well, all this can be easily solved by switching your default DNS (the one you get from your ISP) to a third-party DNS server like Google. But before we begin–
What is DNS?
DNS stands for domain name server. In simple words, it’s a system, that translates the domain name (like google.com) to its IP address (like 126.96.36.199).
The logic behind it is simple. For us humans, it’s easy to remember words like google or Facebook than a bunch of IP address. Right? So we use domain name everywhere. But machines don’t understand domain names, they only understand IP addresses.
So we use DNS to link a domain name to its IP address. Basically, it’s a big digital address book, that contains the list of all websites and their IP address.
For a better understanding of DNS and how to change it on all popular OS, I suggest the following video.
How many DNS services are there?
Many. But only some of them are worth knowing. By default, we use our ISP’s DNS service, but there are other players as well that offer extra features. Like
Google DNS for faster speed (188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206)
OpenDNS for parental control (220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168 )
Norton ConnectSafe DNS good for malware protection and safety
So which is the best DNS for me?
Depends on what you want to use it for. There is no best DNS server. Sometimes third-party DNS are good for speed and security. And sometimes your ISP’s DNS is suitable for downloading files from the server near you.
So depending on your requirement you can change DNS of your computer, smartphone or your router. Let’s see how.
How to change DNS?
You can either change DNS by going to the system setting of that devices, or you can also use an application to do it if you do it frequently.
So here we will see both methods.
#1 Change DNS Server on Windows 10/8/7
Go to the Start menu and type in Network and Sharing Center and hit enter. A new window will open. Here click on your connection name > properties > internet version protocol (TCP/IPv4) > properties.
Once there, select use the following DNS server, then enter the primary and secondary IP address and save changes. That’s it.
Click on the following screenshot to zoom it or see this GIF.
If you switch DNS frequently then use software like DNS jumper.
To see the effect, you may need to flush previous settings. To do that, open cmd and type ipconfig/flushdns and hit enter.
#2 Change DNS Server on MAC
Changing DNS is MAC is quicker than windows.
Launch spotlight (shortcut cmd+spacebar) and type in Network.
The connection you are using will have a green dot next to it, (like if you are using the internet from WiFi then select WiFi) and click on Advanced. On connection’s properties select DNS. Click on the plus sign and add DNS1 and DNS2.
See this GIF for step by step instruction.
#3 Change DNS Server on Android
1. Go to your WiFi setting (Video tutorial)
2. Long press the WiFi network whose DNS you would like to change, and then select ‘Modify network’.
3. Mark show hidden options and select static IP address
4. Under DNS1 and DNS2 enter the name server you want to add
5. Save changes and that’s it
However, if you are running lollipop, then your ‘save changes’ button may not work. Or if you change DNS frequently then use WiFi Settings app. It’s free, works well and doesn’t require root permission.
#4 Change DNS Server on iPad/iPhone
Head over to Settings and tap the Wi-Fi. Next, under the Wifi options, tap on your current network name whose DNS you want to change. You’ll now see details like IP address of your device and router etc.
Next, tap on the DNS option and use your keyboard to delete all the previous IP address. Once cleared add new DNS server IPs and then go back to save changes.
#5 Change DNS Server on Router Level
By changing DNS of your router, you are basically changing the DNS of all the device connected to your network. This is useful if you want to apply the same setting to every device on your network, without wasting your time on one of them
Every router is different, so there is no fixed guide that works for all. But in a nutshell, all I can say is, go to routers login page and look the place where you can enter DNS1 and DNS2. Usually, it’s under Wireless or DHCP.