Get faster Internet by using 3rd party DNS

Ever wondered why you think you have subscribed to a sufficiently fast 30Mbps broadband but your web-browsing experience or Internet connection feel super slow? That might be due to your DNS or Domain Name System setting. You see, when you type let say afifplc.blogspot.my into your browser’s address bar, you are actually telling the browser to go to the IP address 74.125.68.132 on the world wide web. You see, computers and servers only understand numbers, specifically IP addresses like 74.125.68.132 etc and they need a Domain Name Server (also confusingly called DNS) to translate those text into numbers.



So where are these Domain Name Servers located? Here, there and everywhere. Usually your home or office router setting is set to point to your Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) (like Unifi, Time, Maxis, etc) DNS as default. While most of the time these local DNS will do the translating job just fine, sometimes they are overwhelmed or perhaps they’re just not doing a good job translating web addresses. That is why a lot of people uses 3rd party DNS servers as their default DNS IP addresses to get faster Internet connection. There are perhaps hundreds of alternative DNS providers to choose from out there but the two most popular 3rd party DNS providers out right now are Open DNS and Google DNS. (Open DNS is also good for preventing hacks and website filtering)



But don’t just take my word for it, you can actually run a test yourself to determine which DNS provider is best for you. Namebench is an open source program that run tests find out which DNS could provide a faster Internet connection than your current one based on your location. To download Namebench go on to their github page and choose the right version for your operating system. Open Namebench and then click Start Benchmark. Namebench will then ping various DNS servers and then record their connection speed at the end. This process will take at least half an hour so don’t be alarmed when it goes on for some time.



Take my home broadband connection for example which uses TM’s DNS servers. The Namebench test that I ran found out I could get up to 809.7% faster connection by using 3rd party DNS servers. The servers that it recommended based on my location are Google’s public DNS and P1’s DNS. Google DNS because they’re generally the fastest DNS server out there and P1 since it is nearer. So I just set my primary DNS to Google (8.8.4.4) and secondary DNS to P1 (122.255.96.132) and watch how my Internet connection goes up at least 5–6 times faster. Usually the video would occasionally buffer when I watch them in HD on YouTube but after changing my DNS they played smoothly.



So what are you waiting for? Go change your DNS addresses now and see the difference in speed. How-to Geek has an excellent tutorial on how to change the DNS addresses on your computer and router. Just remember if you change the DNS on one of your computers, it might have difficulty accessing network shares or shared printers if they’re using different DNSs. Therefore it is safer to set your DNS in your router so that all your computers and devices use the same DNS.

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