How to Select and Use the Best DNS on the Internet


If your PC loads web pages slowly or even unresponsive, try trying the best DNS available in your geographic location.

Translated into Spanish as domain name system, DNS is an important protocol used by computers, services or any resource connected to the Internet. It has several uses, but the most important is to resolve the IP address of the web page or service we are using. Clearer: This protocol converts human-readable website names (such as google.com) to computer-readable numeric addresses (216.58.210.163).

To do this, we use DNS servers, dedicated equipment that acts as a means of intercommunication between the user and the web pages he visits. They have huge databases in which the relationships between domains and their respective IP addresses are recorded. When we try to connect to a webpage like the one in the example, google.com, the request is passed to the DNS servers to “translate” or “resolve” that URL. Its usefulness is clearly visible if we imagine what it would be like to have to use and remember the numerical addresses of all the web pages we visit.

It must be said that each Internet access provider automatically serves its own DNS to its customers. But there are other alternatives that can be used that often work better.. And not only do they offer advantages in terms of Internet performance and reliability, but they also offer additional functions of geolocation, security, against censorship or parental controls, in addition to updating their database of addresses faster than most ISPs. services.

What are the best DNS?

There is no concrete answer to this question. It depends a lot on the operator, the geographical location, the type of Internet service, the equipment and even the precise moment because it usually varies. There are many alternatives, but among the most used, reliable, free and updated with the latest technologies, we can highlight:

  • Google public DNS: 8.8.8.8 (primary) – 8.8.4.4 (secondary)
  • OpenDNS: 208.67.222.222 (primary) – 208.67.220.220 (secondary)
  • Cloudflare: 1.1.1.1 (primary) – 1.0.0.1 (secondary)
  • Other more specialized ones can also be used to access geo-blocked content such as UnoDNS, CleanBrowsing, Quad9 or Unblock-US.

test your connection

Before making any changes, it’s a good idea to test your internet connection. There are apps that do the work for us. Perhaps the best known is Namebench, but we also like the DNS Benchmark. It is available for Windows and can also be used on macOS or Linux using Wine. The software is available for free on the GRC website and requires no installation. Simply:

  • Download the small application ‘DNSBench.exe’ (only 166 KB) and launch it.
  • Click on the “Nameservers” tab to select the main reference screen and data pages.
  • Click the “Run Benchmark” button to run the benchmark tests and test the DNS on your computer.
  • If you are interested, click on the “Conclusions” tab to know all the details of the test
  • The most interesting and graphic you will find in “Nameservers > Response Time. If you keep the “Sort fastest first” option checked, you’ll see the best DNS in the test for their response time, status, provider, and location.

It should be noted that this test and others only offer performance information on response time in domain resolution. It may be that others, although slightly slower, could offer other advantages among those mentioned above. You appreciate.

How to use the best DNS on a PC

All operating systems allow you to change domain name servers in the network configuration section. Taking Windows as an example, changes can be made from the Control Panel, simply by changing the IP associated with each one. On Windows 11, it’s even easier and more visual as it can be done in the General Settings > Network & Internet tool:

better dns

DNS Jumper

There are also third-party software that make it easier for us. This application for Windows is the one we like the most. It’s free and portablebecause it does not require installation.

  • Download the “DnsJumper.zip” file from its official page and unzip it anywhere on your PC.
  • Navigate to the unzipped folder and run the “DnsJumper.exe” file.

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  • You will see a simple but very powerful interface, with different sections to manage, starting with choosing the network adapter you have to make the changes or all together.
  • Also interesting is the ability to select the server from a list where you can find the best alternative DNS.

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  • Finally, you can directly write the IP of the server you want or activate IPv6 DNS. It has a Fastest Servers Checker, although for that we like the Namebench or DNS Benchmark that we saw above.

As simple as it is powerful. Make the changes you are considering, apply, and restart the computer for the changes to take effect.

What if I want to use alternate DNS on my entire network?

The above method only affects the particular PC you are running it on. If you want to use alternative DNS to those offered by the operator so that they affect your entire local network and all computers that connect to it changes must be made at the router level.

Easiest access is via the web interface using your access IP address, entering addresses such as 192.168.0.1, 192.168.1.1, 192.168.2.1 (or similar) in any web browser , depending on your router. Almost all routers of the same brand or model have a certain username/password programmed in for easy access.

This type of access is common knowledge and is usually as simple as the famous “admin/admin”. A search on the web is enough to know them and there are even specialized tools such as RouterPasswords which facilitate the data of any known make and model.

Once the IP address and password are known, we enter its web interface and we modify the section corresponding to the DNS that depending on the model we will find in the “Internet Configuration” section or directly “DNS”.

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It will depend on your router, but changing is simple and just involves changing the servers IP. Restart the router for the changes to take effect on any device that we connect to the local network.

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DNS change is not a panacea and its effects will always be limited by the speed and quality of the broadband service you have contracted. Also feature management that you need to do every time you install a new router or new devices that we have recommended to you many times. But you don’t lose anything because these changes are fully reversible and take a few minutes. And sometimes they make a difference in loading web pages.

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