No. of Recommendations: 3
OpenDNS and Google DNS ( and are good alternatives, but they can actually lead to slower browsing.

Why? Because Akamai and other content delivery networks will respond to a DNS query by pointing you to the server nearest your DNS.

When you try and stream a video, your computer will do a lookup to your DNS, which will query the DNS server for the relevant domain. That server will use IP address geolocation to determine where your DNS is located, then respond with the address of the server closest to you.

Put more plainly, if you live in Chicago, your video will be delivered by a server in (or near) Chicago, but if you live in San Jose, your video will be delivered by a server in (or near) San Jose.

But if you live in Chicago, and use a DNS server in Hong Kong, your content will be delivered by a server in (or near) Hong Kong. The results will may be pretty. Congestion and latency may cause the video to take long to start playing, to stutter as it buffers more data, or even to appear in a lower resolution. (Some providers, like Netflix, will dynamically change the resolution to compensate for bandwidth issues.)

Both OpenDNS and GoogleDNS use anycast technology that's supposed to overcome this problem by sending you to the DNS nearest to you. But in real-world usage, it doesn't always work.

If your ISP's DNS isn't working, I suggest using namebench to locate the DNS that's fastest for you. It looks at your browser's history to learn what domains you frequent, then it performs hundreds of lookups for those domains at various public DNS servers (including your default server), and finally it tells you which is fastest for you.

It's free, open source, and runs on every major OS:
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