What is Domain Name System ( DNS ) and how does DNS works ?


We browse a lot of websites everyday on the internet , but do you know how does our computers connect to these websites ? In order to know how our computers connect to these websites we have to know what is DNS first .

What is DNS ?

DNS or Domain Name System is similar to a Phone directory . DNS is basically a large database of websites addresses and their corresponding IP Addresses . For us, we know a website by its URL address . But in case of computers they recognize a website by its IP address . So whenever you try to open a website on your computer , our computers take the help of DNS servers to find out the websites unique IP addresses and connect to the websites . Yes in some case a website may have multiple IP addresses .

How does DNS work ?

how does dns work

To understand how a DNS server works , Let us take Google.com as an example . For our computers www.google.com is just like a person’s name but on the internet Google is represented by a IP address , Which is . So , for your computer to connect to Google.com it has to first find out Google’s ip address . This is where DNS comes into use . Whenever you enter a web site’s address in a web browser , your computer connects to its current DNS servers and looks for the IP address associated with the website’s URL . Its is then your computer connects to the website and displays it content .

How are DNS servers useful ?

Apart from the above task of associating websites with their IP addresses . DNS has a lot of other usages too . here are some of the important uses of DNS .

  1. If your ISP provides a very slow internet service , you can use third party DNS servers and improve the loading speed of websites on your computer .
  2. Using free DNS servers like OpenDNS , parents can block objectionable websites on a computer .
  3. Third party DNS servers are used to avail additional security features like phishing and spam protection
  4. DNS servers can be used to access country specific censored and blocked websites or bypass restrictions .

While there are a lot of others uses of DNS , the above were some of the most important ones . OpenDNS and Google’s public DNS are some of the most used third party DNS service providers . While the default DNS server addresses provided by your ISP are always recommended but if you are having problems with your ISP’s DNS servers then you can always switch to third party DNS service like OpenDNS or Google’s public DNS .

In the next post i will be providing a step by step guide on How to change your Default DNS server addresses from your computer .


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