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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool Network
Since Google announced their new free public DNS service, there has been a lot of talk about the speed of various DNS.

If you'd like to find the fastest DNS for your location, use the free Namebench, which tests well-known DNS as well as your regional DNS.

I had been using OpenDNS, but it turns out my ISP's DNS is 53% faster!

[robg adds: The test can take a while to run, and on my machine at least, I wasn't able to use the net while it was running -- lookups kept timing out until the test was over. The end result, though, is quite useful.]
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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool | 11 comments | Create New Account
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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: ChuckEye on Dec 15, '09 08:03:43AM

Worth noting that while the app on the .dmg is Intel-only, the python script in the .tgz runs fine from the terminal on a PPC.



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: steady-chan on Dec 15, '09 10:12:00AM

Also worth noting that I got vastly different results when I did one instance of the test versus 10 instances (letting the app run for 30 minutes or so). At first, my use of OpenDNS was rated as being slower than UltraDNS (by 23%), but when I ran multiple tests I found my current configuration to be substantially faster than UltraDNS (by 63%).



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FYI: namebench feedback @ MacUpdate
Authored by: sjk on Dec 15, '09 10:44:10AM

The comments from thus.spake.z and Thomas Stromberg's response on namebench's MacUpdate product page might be of interest to some people using this app.

Edited on Dec 15, '09 10:45:10AM by sjk



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FYI: namebench feedback @ MacUpdate
Authored by: robg on Dec 15, '09 11:18:24AM

To summarize: the way this tool works is by re-running your DNS queries from your browser. If you're uncomfortable with that, you should specify the Alexa data source, which will use generic data instead of your specific data.

-rob.



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FYI: namebench feedback @ MacUpdate
Authored by: sjk on Dec 15, '09 12:56:40PM

Nice summary. Thanks, Rob!



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: cawaker on Dec 15, '09 11:43:16AM

It makes sense the ISP dns was fastest cause generally they cache tons of sites for their services. Also its generally the quickest hop away.

Still neat tool for others who prefer to avoid their ISP dns servers for various reasons.



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: WelshDog on Dec 15, '09 10:14:38PM

Not working for me. I use a 12" Powerbook running 10.5.8 Maybe I don't understand how to run it. Tried typing ./namebench.py: in Terminal and got this response: Command not found. Tried double clicking the script and got same result.

Any help appreciated.



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: ChrisJ on Dec 16, '09 01:43:41AM
How about python ./namebench.py? Works for me in 10.5.8 on a PowerMac G5 (as the app is Intel-only).

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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: richsadams on Dec 16, '09 01:45:17AM

Interesting tool, but I'm not sure what to do about the results. I have VZ FIOS but I'm using their Westel router in bridge mode and my D-Link Extreme N as my router. Testing the VZ IP assigned to their router (my public IP) shows their DNS to be 22% faster than OpenDNS. However when I test the D-Link router's IP it shows that OpenDNS is 28% faster. Should I stick with the VZ setup or change it to OpenDNS? TIA for any advice.



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: Kalak on Dec 16, '09 06:17:37AM

I've found varying results as well. It's the TCP/IP so nothing is 100% consistent. The best way is to run multiple results over varying times. Even on the university LANs, talking to local DNS servers, it's varied as to which I should choose among the 3 on campus. Benchmarking anything is more an art than a science, so repeat and take as a guideline.

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Kalak
I am, and always will be, an Idiot.



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Find the fastest DNS using a free tool
Authored by: slferris on Dec 21, '09 02:41:42AM

I have run Namebench several times and never gotten consistent DNS configuration recommendations.

Any suggestions how I should decide which set of recommendations to use?



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