Domain Name Server (DNS)

September 9, 2011

DNS stands for Domain Name Server. When you type in the name of a website like www.google.com, that name has to be translated into a numerical address known as an IP address so that your computer can find google.com. DNS is the process that does that translation.

Each Internet service provider provides a DNS server and your computer uses that by default. But you don’t have to use it if you don’t want to. And there are other DNS servers around that you can use, but why would you want to?

There are many reasons. The best reason, in our opinion, is security. There are DNS servers you can use that do not have known infected websites in them. So it is impossible for your computer to access these known infected websites because your computer can’t get to them if DNS doesn’t have the address.

Some DNS providers give you the ability to filter based on categories. For example, you could tell it to filter out websites with nudity on them. You could filter out instant messaging, parked domains, gambling sites, and so forth. The list is quite extensive. If you filter out a category, your computer can no longer access a website in that category.

Another thing some alternative DNS services can give you is reporting and statistics. You can see which websites you access the most and how often. This can also help you track down an infection.

Another reason to use an alternative DNS is that your Internet service provider may not do a very good job at maintaining their DNS server. If there are problems with their DNS server, you won’t be able to access things on the internet. Alternative DNS servers are usually more stable and often faster.

We think everyone should switch their DNS to Comodo Secure DNS to help improve the security on your system and help prevent infection. In fact, if we have worked on your system in our office, we may have already switched you over to Comodo DNS. For more information about Comodo Secure DNS or for instructions on how to begin using it, go to http://www.comodo.com/secure-dns/.

If you want to be able to filter out categories of websites and see statistics, then you should use Open DNS. For more information or to begin using OpenDNS, go to http://www.opendns.com/.

There are many other DNS servers that are available, but these are the ones we recommend.

You can change the DNS server on each computer, or you can change it on your router so that every computer that connects to your router will use the DNS server you specify.

2 Responses to “Domain Name Server (DNS)”

  1. Drew

    Do I already have this?

    Jim Wielenga

  2. Hi Jim. Yes. You already have it.

    Drew

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