How to Use Google DNS or OpenDNS on Your Android Device

Often you will find that your Internet connection has become slow and the websites that you try to open take too long to load. While not always, this may be an issue with your DNS (Domain Name Server). DNS is responsible for converting the web addresses that you type in your address bar to IP addresses, so you can find the website by URL rather than by IP addresses. The default DNS are not always as fast as the alternative ones that we are going to talk about in this post, but configuring your device to work with these alternative DNS will help you get faster Internet speed.

Two of these alternative DNS servers are Google DNS and OpenDNS. Both of them are free to use. Since the Android devices do not have a built-in option to change DNS, there is a workaround that helps get this done. What you are going to do is use an app from the Google Play that will help you alter the Domain Name Servers on your device.

Things You Should Know

  • It is required that your device has root access. Without root, you are not going to be able to change your DNS.
  • In case you are not happy even after changing your DNS, you can always revert back to the default ones.

Changing the DNS on Your Android Device

To start, you are going to need an app called SetDNS that will help you modify your current servers. The app is free and can be obtained from the Google Play.

1. Head over to the Google Play and install the SetDNS app.

2. Launch the app from your device’s App Drawer.

3. When you launch the app for the very first time, it will ask you to grant the Superuser permission. To do so, simply hit the “Grant” button and you should be good to go.

dnsandroid-grant

4. On the next screen, tap on the dropdown menu given at the top, and it should list out all the different Domain Name Servers available for you to use.

dnsandroid-menu

5. As an example, we are going to be using the Google DNS. Choose “Google DNS” from the dropdown menu, and your screen should look like following image. Tap on the “Apply” button, and the selected servers will be applied on your device.

dnsandroid-apply

6. Similarly, you can choose OpenDNS from the dropdown menu and hit “Apply” to make it work with your device.

7. You are done.

For your information, the Google DNS and Open DNS settings are as follows:

Google DNS

DNS 1 – 8.8.8.8
DNS 2 – 8.8.4.4

OpenDNS

DNS 1 – 208.67.222.222
DNS 2 – 208.67.220.220

There are some options in the Settings menu that you must take a look at as that is what will enable the DNS to work with your WiFi and 3G network.

dnsandroid-settings

As shown in the image above, make sure that the options named as “Override Wifi DNS” and “Override 3G DNS” are enabled. If they are not, your device will use the default Domain Name Servers and not the ones you just configured.

Conclusion

Sometimes changing your DNS helps you resolve any problems with your Internet, and it also speeds up your connection so the webpages will load faster than ever on your device.

11 comments

  1. One other thing users should know:
    Any activity while using Google DNS will be recorded and stored by Google. This may or may not be a big deal to users.

    1. Hello dragonmouth,

      Here’s what Google has to say about this:

      “We built Google Public DNS to make the web faster and to retain as little information about usage as we could, while still being able to detect and fix problems. Google Public DNS does not permanently store personally identifiable information.”

      Thanks!

  2. SetDNS only comes up as the PRO version

  3. FYI, this doesn’t work with 4.3 or above devices. Not installable on my HTC One with KitKat

    1. That’s an affirmative. Won’t work for KitKat on HTC One M8.

  4. Can I do thid on my desktop ?

    1. If you mean use Google DNS or openDNS on your desktop computer, the answer is YES.

    2. Yes, of course you can. All you need to do is access your network settings in your PC or Mac and change the IPv4 and IPv6 DNS addresses from automatically assigned by your ISP to the super fast Google DNS addresses.

      Visit this wiki website to learn more:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Public_DNS

    3. Yep, it’s a piece of cake to configure your PC to work with Google DNS. Just adjust your Network settings to allow Google DNS and you’re all set.

      Thanks!

  5. For Android KitKat you can use an app called Override DNS (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.mx17.overridedns)

  6. I use ProDNS Secure (http://bit.ly/prodns-secure) works also on Lollipop!

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