DNS it means Domain Name System (Domain Name System in English), and it’s an essential part of what makes the Internet “work.” Also known as the “Internet phone book,” DNS turns IP addresses into an easy-to-use domain name.
Instead of remembering to type an IP address like 74,125,131,106 for google, you can type Google com, for instance. DNS functionality is typically provided by your Internet Service Provider, but these ISP-provided servers can be slow and unusable.
Slow DNS, slow Internet browsing – changing your DNS settings to a different service can provide a faster and more secure browsing experience than what your ISP can provide. If you want to change DNS in Windows 11, this is what you have to do.
Free DNS configuration and services
Here are three popular DNS alternatives that can provide a faster browsing experience and greater security. Services like OpenDNS (now owned by Cisco) have additional benefits, such as web content filtering and phishing website blocking, that your ISP may not offer.
If you need a free DNS provider, here are some IPv4 options you can try:
Depending on your location and your ISP, using an alternate DNS can make pages load faster. However, you may want to try each of them to find the one that works best for you.
How to change DNS in Windows 11
There are a couple of different ways to change DNS settings in Windows 11. You can do this through the Settings app or by using the classic Control Panel settings menu.
Change DNS through settings
If you want to change DNS settings through the Settings app, open Beginning and select Setting.
In the menu Setting, select Network and Internet on the left. Then select your connection type on the right, either Wifi or Ethernet.
Then click on the properties option for your active network connection. For example, in the case of Wi-Fi connections, your wireless network will appear here by name.
In the next menu, scroll down and look for the option to DNS Server Assignment, which should be in “Automatic”If you haven’t changed your DNS settings before.
To make changes, click the button Edit.
Please select Handbook from the drop-down menu when the “Edit network DNS settings“.
Then activate IPv4 and enter the details of the preferred and alternate DNS provider. For example, to use Google’s public DNS, type here 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52.
Make sure to click the button Keep for the changes to take effect. In the example below, I am using Cloudflare DNS, but you can use the DNS provider that suits you best.
Once the configuration is saved, you will find it in the properties of “DNS server mapping“.
Change DNS settings in Windows 11 via Control Panel
You can continue to use the old Control Panel to change DNS settings in Windows 11 if it is more convenient for you.
To do this, open the Control Panel (via Start, type control Panel and select it through the option Best match) and select Network and Sharing Center> Change adapter settings.
tip: To get there faster, press the Windows key, type network connections and click View network connections at the top of the result of Best match.
The screen of Network connection opens with existing connections, be it Wi-Fi or Ethernet.
Right-click the adapter that you want to configure, and then click Properties. Click Yes if the UAC dialog displays a message.
In the window of network adapter properties, highlight the Internet Protocol version 4 (TCP / IPv4) and click the button Properties.
Then select the option “Use the following DNS server addresses”And enter the IP addresses of the DNS service you want to use, and click To accept.
To verify that the configuration works, check the box Validate configuration on exit. Then close the remaining windows.
Verify DNS settings
The network troubleshooter will start if you check the box “Validate configuration on exit”Using the Control Panel method. If it doesn’t detect a problem, you can continue.
If you encounter any problems, double-check that you’ve entered your DNS settings correctly.
You can also verify that the DNS settings are working through the command prompt or PowerShell.
Launch either of the two utilities via Start (type cmd or ps, and select the first option), then type ipconfig / all. Scroll down to the properties of your network adapter and you will see the DNS servers that are being used.
Of course, you can also try the old-fashioned way. Open your browser and try to visit a site that you don’t normally visit; if it loads, your custom DNS server should be working.
Configuring DNS Settings in Windows 11
If you find that pages load too slowly while browsing the web, you may want to change DNS settings in Windows 11 following the steps above. Not only can it speed up your browsing experience, but services like OpenDNS can provide additional features to help you stay safe online.
It’s also worth mentioning that you should try different DNS services to find the one that works best. The DNS provided by your Internet Service Provider may work fine, and if it does, you may not see any advantage in switching servers.