How to Setup OpenDNS to Speed Up & Secure Your Web Browsing

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

  1. 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.
  2. Open your browser and enter the routers IP address into the address bar. For most home routers it’s – if you’re not sure what it is check its documentation or find your router on the OpenDNS page.
  3. a web browser displaying a router IP address

  4. 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:

    In all likelihood there will be a “Save Settings” (or similar) button – make sure to click it.

    router settings page

  6. Then you should see a message similar to this one letting you know the changes have been set. Click Continue.
  7. a confirmation dialog box with an arrow pointing at a Continue button

  8. To verify the settings were successful you should have a section in your router where it shows the status.
  9. DNS servers listed in a routers settings

  10. 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! :)

Setup OpenDNS in Windows

  1. 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.
  2. searching for the word network in Windows

  3. Locate your current Network Connection (probably Wi-Fi) and double-click it.
  4. list of network connections in Windows

  5. Click the Properties button.
  6. an arrow pointing to a button named Properties

  7. Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) by clicking on it once, and then click the Properties button.
  8. the networking protocols list for a Windows networking device

  9. Select the Use the following DNS server addresses: option, and then enter as the Preferred DNS server: and as the Alternate DNS server:
  10. the OpenDNS servers entered into the Windows TCP settings to speed up web browsing

  11. 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

  1. Open your System Preferences and select Network
  2. an arrow pointing to the macOS Network settings

  3. Select your active Internet connection (probably Wi-Fi) and then click the Advanced… button.
  4. an arrow pointing to an Advanced button on a Mac

  5. Choose the DNS tab and then click the small “plus sign” ( + ) button located below the DNS Servers: section.
  6. adding a DNS server to the macOS TCPIP settings

  7. Enter the address, click the “plus sign” button again and add as well.

    adding the OpenDNS servers to a Mac

  8. 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.
  9. rearranging the order of DNS servers in macOS

  10. 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

  1. 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:
  2. the welcome to OpenDNS confirmation page

  3. When you click the demo phishing site you should see the following:
  4. screenshot of the InternetBadGuys web page being blocked

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