This guide will show you step by step how to setup the free version of OpenDNS to both speed up and secure your Internet browsing.
There are a slew of reasons to use OpenDNS, but the big 3 are:
1. Websites will load faster and you won’t have to worry about DNS outages from your ISP.
2. There are more than 50 customizable categories for content filtering which means OpenDNS lets parents control what websites their children visit.
3. OpenDNS automatically blocks phishing websites that try to steal your identity and login information by pretending to be a legitimate website.
There are a couple of ways you can protect your devices with OpenDNS – at the router level, or at the device level. If you add OpenDNS to your router, that means all of the devices that connect to your home network will be protected by and using OpenDNS. Or you can add OpenDNS on a device by device basis (eg. just the kids computers and tablets). We’ve got you covered either way with instructions on how to setup OpenDNS on a router, in Windows and in macOS.
Add OpenDNS To A Router
- There are hundreds and hundreds of different makes and models of routers. We’re going to provide general instructions on changing the DNS servers on a router, but for the specific steps on your make/model, you’ll need to refer to its website/documentation. OpenDNS offer instructions for various types of routers on their page which may also help.
- Open your browser and enter the routers IP address into the address bar. For most home routers it’s https://192.168.1.1 – if you’re not sure what it is check its documentation or find your router on the OpenDNS page.
- Enter in the user name and password to access your routers configuration settings. Look for a section titled something along the lines of DNS settings – and enter in the following IP addresses in the DNS server fields:
- Then you should see a message similar to this one letting you know the changes have been set. Click Continue.
- To verify the settings were successful you should have a section in your router where it shows the status.
- In order for the devices that are currently connected to your network to use OpenDNS they’ll need to re-connect. Restart one of them and then on that device check to make sure OpenDNS is working. That’s it! :)
In all likelihood there will be a “Save Settings” (or similar) button – make sure to click it.
Setup OpenDNS in Windows
- Click the Windows Search button (or use the keyboard combo Windows key + S to open the Search panel) and enter the word network in the search box. Select View network connections from the list of results.
- Locate your current Network Connection (probably Wi-Fi) and double-click it.
- Click the Properties button.
- Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) by clicking on it once, and then click the Properties button.
- Select the Use the following DNS server addresses: option, and then enter 126.96.36.199 as the Preferred DNS server: and 188.8.131.52 as the Alternate DNS server:
- Click OK and close out of the other open windows. Now all you have to do is check to make sure OpenDNS is working!
Setup OpenDNS in macOS
- Open your System Preferences and select Network
- Select your active Internet connection (probably Wi-Fi) and then click the Advanced… button.
- Choose the DNS tab and then click the small “plus sign” ( + ) button located below the DNS Servers: section.
- Enter the address 184.108.40.206, click the “plus sign” button again and add 220.127.116.11 as well.
- Click on one of the two DNS servers you just added and drag-and-drop it to the top of the list of DNS servers. Then do the same thing with the other DNS server you just added so that they’re the first two addresses listed.
- Click OK to return to the Network Preferences and then click the Apply button on that screen. Now all you have to do is check to make sure OpenDNS is working!
Make Sure OpenDNS is Working
- To ensure OpenDNS has been properly added to your router or device, go to the Welcome to OpenDNS Page. You should see the following screen if everything was configured correctly:
- When you click the demo phishing site InternetBadGuys.com you should see the following: