Speed up web browsing with OpenDNS

Posted in Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP by Steve Sinchak

When you type in a domain name such as wingeek.com in your browser the computer must resolve the friendly name into an IP address of the server to download the web page and supporting files. Windows uses a DNS (domain name system) server to lookup this information.  By default, Windows uses your ISP’s DNS server.  Depending on your provider, the performance of their DNS resolving server varies.  Some large national providers are known to provide unreliable and slow DNS servers.  

The performance of the DNS server you are using is one component that affects the speed of your internet browsing.  Since each domain name you type in must be resolved into an IP address, the amount of time that takes will delay the loading of any web page.  Some users with overloaded ISP DNS servers can see delays in multiple seconds before web pages start to load.

OpenDNS provides free alternative DNS servers that anyone can use with any internet provider.  Unlike many national internet providers, OpenDNS’s DNS servers are very fast and reliable.   Using OpenDNS servers instead of your ISP servers will help you speed up your internet browsing by cutting down on the delay between resolving a domain name and getting the IP address so your browser can start loading the web page.

Configuring your computer to use OpenDNS servers instead of your ISP’s is a simple change that works in all versions of Windows:

  1. Click on the Start Button and type in ncpa.cpl and hit Enter.  In Windows XP Click on the Start Button, click Run and then type in ncpa.cpl. Make sure you run ncpa.cpl as administrator on Windows 8. 
  2. Right click on your active network connection that you use to connect to the Internet and select Properties.
  3. On the Networking / General tab, select Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) (version 4 on Windows Vista, 7 and 8) and hit Properties.
  4. On the properties screen, select Use the following DNS server addresses and then type in 208.67.222.222 in the preferred and 208.67.220.220 in the alternate boxes.

     
  5. Hit OK twice and you are finished.

Visit OpenDNS.com to learn more about some of the advanced features of OpenDNS on top of the speed benefits.

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