How to check and change the DNS

Checking and changing DNS settings necessitates technical expertise and shouldn't be undertaken lightly. This article explores the concept of DNS, its purpose, functioning, and impact. We'll also delve into the reasons for checking and updating DNS on your personal or work computer.

What is DNS

The Domain Name System (DNS) is crucial in translating user-friendly site names into IP addresses, which are vital for organizing computers and servers on a network. Key aspects of DNS technology include:

  • A hierarchical structure that organizes domains in a tree-like system, from root to subdomains.
  • A structured database, distributed across numerous DNS servers globally, storing domain information.
  • Operational reliance on protocols like UDP and TCP.
  • Domain authentication, where DNS translates domain names into IP addresses during website access.
  • The ability to filter and block access to harmful web resources, thereby reducing network infection risks.
  • A role in detecting and mitigating DDoS attacks, with cloud-based DNS services filtering traffic and ensuring request availability.
  • Enhanced privacy and security through DNS-over-HTTPS (DoH) and DNS-over-TLS (DoT), encrypting internet traffic to prevent data interception.

The DNS helps conceal your network's internal structure, masking IP addresses and locations to enhance online anonymity. While DNS is effective for anonymous browsing, beware of “DNS leaks” that could compromise your data. These leaks often occur with improperly configured proxy servers or VPNs, such as when an IPv6 server sends requests to an IPv4 DNS. Therefore, comprehending the purpose behind changing your DNS is crucial before making any changes.

How to check and change DNS on Windows

Modifying your DNS settings can boost internet speed and enhance connection performance. However, understanding the DNS system is essential before tweaking these settings. Notably, DNS is divided into primary and secondary types: the primary DNS is responsible for database record changes, which is where most configuration work occurs. This article focuses on Windows 10, given its widespread use, though the process may vary slightly for other operating systems.

  1. Open the Control Panel using Win+R, type “control panel”, and click “OK”.
  2. Navigate to “Network and Internet” settings.
  3. Click on “Network and Sharing Center”.
  4. Select “Change adapter settings” from the left panel.
  5. In “Network Connections”, identify your connection type - typically Ethernet or Wi-Fi. For Wi-Fi changes, proceed with the wireless option.
  6. Right-click your connection type and select “Properties”.
  7. Find “IP version 4 (TCP/IPv4)”, select it, and click “Properties”.
  8. To modify settings, select “Use the following IP address” or “Use the following DNS server addresses”.
  9. Enter the desired DNS parameters in “Preferred DNS server” and “Alternate DNS server”. For example, Google's OpenDNS settings are and

To activate new settings, restart your computer or network connection. For a wireless network reboot, disconnect your router for a minute and then power it up again.
While Google Public DNS is generally reliable and secure, its public nature often leads to overloading. For enhanced privacy protection of your browsing history, IP, and other data, consider using commercial DNS options.

Checking and changing DNS on Linux

Configuing the DNS on a Linux or server can be done via the built-in terminal or third-party software. For secure DNS, avoid utilities from unknown sources. Follow these steps to adjust your DNS settings.

  1. Open the terminal as an administrator by pressing “Ctrl + Alt + T”. This works across all Linux distributions. The file “/etc/resolv.conf” in the Linux system database holds DNS settings. View it with “cat /etc/resolv.conf” in the terminal and press "Enter".
  2. The terminal will display your current DNS settings and server list.
  3. If your settings show Google's public server (e.g.,, but you prefer different servers, proceed to edit “/etc/resolv.conf”. Use a text editor like “nano” by entering “sudo nano /etc/resolv.conf” in the terminal.
  4. In the editor, replace the existing DNS server addresses with your chosen ones.
  5. After editing, save your changes in both the editor and the operating system. To prevent automatic overwriting of “/etc/resolv.conf”, disable its auto-generation using specific commands.

Executing a “restart” command will temporarily disrupt your internet connection as the DNS service restarts".

How to check and change DNS on Mac OS

Configuring DNS settings on Mac OS requires administrator privileges. The simplest method to check and edit DNS parameters is through the built-in terminal.

  1. Open Utilities by pressing “Command + Shift + U”, find “Terminal”, and launch it. To view current DNS servers, type “scutil –dns” at the prompt.
  2. To modify DNS server settings, use the “networksetup” command with specific attributes:
    - “sudo” initiates the command as an administrator;
    - “networksetup” is the command to edit network settings;
    - “-setdnsservers” is for DNS parameter adjustments;
    - “Wi-Fi” - the type of connection for which configuration is required;
    - "" - changeable DNS address.
  3. For secondary server settings, a similar command is used, like “sudo networksetup -setdnsservers Wi-Fi”. Replace “Wi-Fi” with your network interface and the addresses with your chosen DNS.
  4. Note that the secondary server address is entered first. Finalize changes with the "dscacheutil -flushcache" command.

Alternatively, DNS settings can be adjusted through “System Settings” and “Network”, but the path may vary depending on the macOS version. Other than Google servers, options like Cloudflare DNS (primary, secondary or OpenDNS (, are available. Cloudflare offers high-quality, stable connections with additional malware protection and parental control features.

Checking and changing the DNS settings on IOS

Changing the DNS server on an IOS device can help bypass your Internet provider's web resource blocks and remove geographical restrictions.

  1. On IOS version 11 or higher, open your device’s main settings and select the “Wi-Fi” tab.
  2. Beside your active connection, tap the small “i” icon on the right.
  3. Scroll down in the subsequent window to find the “Configure DNS” option near the bottom.
  4. The default setting is “Automatic”. Switch it to “Manual” and replace the default addresses with public ones or those provided by your DNS service. Tap on “Add Server” to input the technical details, then save your changes.

Typically, mobile devices do not require a reboot for these changes to take effect.

Checking and changing DNS on Android

Configuring DNS settings on Android devices is similar to the process described for IOS.

  1. Open your device's main settings and go to the “Wireless Networks” section. Choose the “Wi-Fi” tab. Depending on your OS version and device, you may need to:
    Tap the “i” button or “gear” icon next to the network name; Touch the network name and select “Advanced settings” Use the pencil icon to edit settings.
  2. In your network's settings, look for and press the “Modify network” option.
  3. At the bottom of this menu, find and select "IP Settings", then choose a static IP address. You'll be prompted to manually enter the DNS and IP parameters for the new connection.

After entering the required information, save your changes. Your device should now connect to the Internet with the updated DNS settings.

TOP 3 secure DNS services

When choosing a DNS service, it's crucial to pick a trustworthy provider. If you're not satisfied with your current paid service or automatic network configuration, consider these alternatives to potentially enhance your internet speed and bypass restrictions from your ISP:


  • Public connection addresses:,
  • Offers malicious site filtering and phishing protection.
  • Handles heavy traffic well, suitable for both private and corporate use.


  • Connection addresses:,
  • Known for high-speed connections and robust DDoS attack protection.
  • Prioritizes user privacy with built-in parental controls.

Google Public DNS

  • Server addresses:,
  • Renowned for speed and reliability, leveraging Google's infrastructure.
  • Facilitates bypassing internet censorship in certain regions.
  • Enhances overall network performance and reduces webpage loading times.

Your choice should align with your specific needs: OpenDNS for enhanced security, Cloudflare or Google Public DNS for faster speeds.

Leave comment

No comments