Many users may not know this, but each website on the web is accessed by a particular IP address. For instance, one of the the IP address for www.google.com is 22.214.171.124 which can be entered into the address bar. The reason why a user can access the website simply with its domain name is due to a networking tool called DNS, or Domain Name System. This system has a table that matches the domain name typed by the user to an IP address that corresponds to the website you are trying to visit. DNS is famously considered as the phone book of the Internet as it makes accessing a website from the billions currently on the Internet quick and easy. Depending on the provider of the DNS service, the time it takes to look up a DNS query may range from virtually unnoticeable to several seconds. Traditionally, an Internet service provider handles the DNS queries made by a user of their service. While most ISPs do an excellent job of handling DNS queries, some users experience slow connections regardless of their Internet speeds. This especially occurs when visiting complex websites that require multiple DNS look-ups.
A good solution to speeding up web browsing is to try Google Public DNS, a free, alternative, global DNS resolution service. Being made by Google, which is now the largest public DNS service in the world, handling an average of more than 70 billion requests a day, users of the service will experience faster browsing speeds as well as improved security compared to a private DNS service. The public service accomplishes fast speeds and better performance through the implementation of large-scale, global caching infrastructure to handle a large portion of DNS queries from cache. As for security, Google has many solutions in place to prevent malicious attacks on users of the service such as denial-of-service (DoS) attacks and cache poisoning attacks with the use of security measures such as basic validity checking and randomization.
In order to configure Google Public DNS for your network, Google has detailed instructions on their website to get their DNS service up and running. For instance, to configure Google Public DNS for Windows 7, here are the following steps:
1. Go the Control Panel > Network and Sharing Center > Change adapter settings
2. Select the connection for which you want to configure Google Public DNS. For example:
a. To change the settings for an Ethernet connection, right-click Local Area Connection, and click Properties.
b. To change the settings for a wireless connection, right-click Wireless Network Connection, and click Properties.
3. If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
4. Select the Networking tab. Under This connection uses the following items, select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) or Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) and then click Properties.
5. Click Advanced and select the DNS tab. If there are any DNS server IP addresses listed there, write them down in case anything goes wrong, and remove them from this window.
6. Click OK.
7. Select Use the following DNS server addresses. If there are any IP addresses listed in the Preferred DNS server or Alternate DNS server, write them down in case anything goes wrong.
8. Replace those addresses with the IP addresses of the Google DNS servers:
a. For IPv4: 126.96.36.199 and/or 188.8.131.52
b. For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844
9. Restart the connection you selected in step 3.
10. Test that your setup is working correctly.
Repeat the procedure for additional network connections you want to change. You can use the same settings for any other operating systems as well as modems and routers.
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