DISCLOSURE: AS AN AMAZON ASSOCIATE I EARN FROM QUALIFYING PURCHASES. THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS, MEANING, AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU, I EARN FROM QUALIFYING PURCHASES. AFFILIATE LINKS ARE MARKED WITH #ad. “I” IN THIS CASE MEANS THE OWNER OF GAMERSNOTALLOWED.COM. PLEASE READ THE FULL DISCLOSURE FOR MORE INFO.
When it comes to online gaming, the last thing you want is for your game to lag, leading to a poor gaming experience and even getting you banned from a game if you disconnect.
A DNS or Domain Name System is an essential part of the gaming experience, and if you do not use fast DNS servers, you will have a poor gaming experience.
Keep reading to see everything you need about DNS servers and the best ones for gaming on Xbox One and Series X/S.
What is DNS?
So before jumping into the best DNS servers, you must know what a DNS is in the first place.
Every device, website, or local network connected to the internet has an IP address comprised of a string of numbers. The DNS system makes it, so you don’t have to remember all these numbers.
Instead, you can type in fx gamersnotallowed.com in your web browser, and the DNS system will translate this into the correct IP address for you and connect you to the site.
When you do this, you contact something called a DNS resolver, aka recursive resolver, which does the translation for you. When you type in domain names (this is called doing DNS lookups), the DNS resolver translates your query into the right IP address – and vice versa.
For this reason, the DNS is sometimes referred to as the phonebook or address book of the Internet.
Usually, you use your Internet Service Providers’ (ISP) DNS resolver. But these can be slow, overburdened, or not very secure.
This is why using custom DNS servers often offers the best performance.
What is a DNS server?
A DNS server is also known as a DNS name server.
Every time you type in a domain server, your Xbox One begins a domain search to locate the correct domain name on a server and its IP addresses to connect you to the one you want.
Since your computer must complete tens to hundreds of these domain name searches daily, it is important to use a fast DNS server.
A DNS nameserver serves as a limited directory for domain names. The servers are placed strategically in data centers all around the globe.
That way, you’ll contact the DNS server closest to you when connecting to a gaming server instead of a single overloaded server on the other side of the globe. This makes it possible to achieve much faster speeds and higher security.
Slow DNS resolvers lead to a laggy and unenjoyable experience when gaming or browsing web pages.
So to reiterate, a DNS server is a directory of domain names used by your gaming console, in this case, your Xbox One, to locate the server you want to play on. And because DNS servers are distributed globally, you achieve higher speeds and more security when browsing and gaming.
The difference Between DNS and VPN
If you have been on the internet for a while, you likely have heard about VPN servers. You may think a VPN is another term for a DNS server, but they are not the same.
A DNS service (Domain Name System) serves as a directory for domains, allowing your device to connect to a particular domain.
This content was first published on GamersNotAllowed.com
On the other hand, a VPN (Virtual Private Network) acts as another layer of security between you, your device, and the website you are connecting to.
It creates an encrypted and secure connection by using a virtual network that sends all your data through a remote server before sending it to the website you are trying to access.
DNS servers help speed up the process of accessing websites and gaming, and VPNs keep your data safe from hackers. – That’s a simplified answer, of course.
Things to be aware of with VPNs and DNS
Some DNS servers also take security measures to prevent data breaches, DDOS attacks, and more. And often, ISPs will keep a record of your activity and behavior. Some public DNS providers might even sell this information to third parties.
Before settling on any DNS resolver, ensure they support the DNSSEC security protocol and use strong encryption.
Also, you should know that while DNS can increase your upload and download speeds, a VPN might do the opposite due to the encryption. That is especially true if you’re trying to use any free VPN services.
So if you’re also going to use a VPN when playing online games, make sure you pay for a subscription to a good and fast one.
Best Gaming DNS Servers
So, now you understand what a DNS server is and why it is important to use one. Now you get to the fun part, the best public DNS servers for gaming on your Xbox One.
A DNS server can decrease loading time, prevent lagging, and secure a smooth gaming experience. It can also sometimes help if you’re experiencing server connection errors.
However, remember that will not always be the case, and you may have to try out different DNS servers to find the best one for you.
With that said, here’s a list of the best free DNS servers.
1. Cloudflare DNS. High speeds Secure DNS server.
Primary DNS Server: 22.214.171.124
Secondary DNS Server: 126.96.36.199
IPv6 addresses for DNS:
First up on the list is one of the best DNS servers currently available for use.
The Cloudflare Public DNS, IP: 188.8.131.52, was built to be the fastest primary DNS server on the internet and succeeded. It is used worldwide and provides a high-quality experience that can not be matched by any other server.
While DNS servers are not VPN servers, the Cloudflare DNS does not collect your data, does not log your IP address, and, even better, doesn’t sell your data to companies. It was built to encrypt your data and keep anyone who should not be accessing it from accessing it.
So if you are tired of pesky advertising companies gaining access to your data and using it to target their ads toward you, give Cloudflare DNS a chance.
At the very least, you can enjoy a fast gaming experience without additional data being auctioned off.
- One of the fastest DNS servers
- Reliable DNS server
- Does not sell your data
- Encrypts your data
2. OpenDNS Network. Best option for Parental Control
Primary DNS Server: 184.108.40.206
Secondary DNS Server: 67.220.220
Next up on the list is the OpenDNS Network server, perfect for families and parents who want to keep their children from accessing inappropriate sites before they are old enough. It is used by over 90 million people worldwide and claims to have 100% reliability.
As mentioned above, OpenDNS servers come with a technology known as OpenDNSFamilyShield. These servers block adult content, and the parental controls can be configured depending on each family’s specific needs.
Like Cloudflare, OpenDNS Network servers use large data warehouses worldwide, allowing your device to access domains quickly regardless of where you may be located. These warehouses provide speedy services by shortening the distance data travels between your network and the data warehouse.
- Equipped with parental controls in the form of OpenDNSFamilyShield
- Fast service via worldwide data warehouses
- 100% reliability
- Does collect your data and may sell it
3. Google Public DNS. Fast, secure DNS service.
Primary DNS Server: 220.127.116.11
Secondary DNS Server: 18.104.22.168
Considered some of the best DNS servers for Xbox gaming, Google’s DNS server was launched in 2009 and has since provided gamers with some of the best internet connections.
While most DNS servers rely on traditional DNS servers, Google’s public DNS server uses custom-built technology to provide you with a secure and private connection.
It provides accurate domain search results and is one of – if not the fastest DNS servers on the web.
Did I mention how strong the security is on these servers? Google takes it very seriously regarding the security of its DNS server users and is constantly monitoring it to ensure malicious hackers do not steal your data.
- Run by Google, so it has a large team constantly improving it
- Impressive Security
- Custom-built technology
- Fast Connections
- Run by Google, so data may be sold or used for advertisements.
4. Quad9 DNS. IBM-backed DNS server.
Primary DNS Server: 22.214.171.124
Secondary DNS Server: 126.96.36.199
Final on our list, but not necessarily least, is the Quad9 DNS servers. Quad9 has some of the largest cybersecurity firms backing it, including IBM, so you can be certain your data will be safe and encrypted when using it.
It is a free service, and gamers can enjoy its quick load times and the peace of mind it provides when browsing the internet. However, while it does not collect your IP address, it does collect other data, including your geographical location. On the good side, though, that data is never used or sold beyond checking it for fraudulent activity.
The whole goal beyond the Quad9 DNS servers is to protect its users from cybercrime and hackers, and it takes that job very seriously. While it may not be 100% foolproof, it is very close, and even if hackers manage to get through, it is almost impossible for them to damage any information.
- Strong security backed by IBM and other cybersecurity firms
- Does not collect your IP
- Data is not sold
- It does not allow users to block or screen content.
I hope you found this list of the best DNS servers useful. DNS servers are essential to any online experience, whether browsing for the best shopping deals or crushing your opponents in Call of Duty on the Xbox One.
Of course, these DNS servers can be used for gaming on all game consoles and speeding up your general web traffic.
Regardless of what you use them for, you must use only the best. The default DNS servers from your internet service provider are not the best choice for fast speeds.
Trying out alternate DNS servers like the ones mentioned above can help if you want a better performance online – both in terms of better speeds and troubleshooting when you’re experiencing errors while connecting to game servers.
If you enjoyed this article and found it helpful, check out some of my other articles – fx, this one, about the best game streaming services. Until next time, happy gaming!
Should I Use a Paid DNS or a Free DNS Server?
While there are some great free DNS servers out there, they may not always provide you with the best experience, so many people decide to pay the few dollars a month necessary for a premium DNS server. It is up to you, and take the time to test out different DNS servers to find the one that works best for you.
Does Changing Your DNS Server Make a Difference?
If you’re already using a good DNS server, changing it might not improve your internet speed. However, if you’re experiencing server errors while gaming, switching to a custom domain name server can sometimes help.
How to change DNS server settings on Xbox One and Series X/S
Here’s how to set the best DNS settings on Xbox in a few simple steps:
- Go to settings
- Go to General -> Network settings
- Go to Advanced Settings
- Click on DNS settings
- Click on Manual
- Type in the primary and secondary DNS IPv4 addresses of choice
- Click done
Now your Xbox will check the connection, and if you’ve done it right, you get to see a page with detailed network statistics that show your new upload and download speed, latency, and more.
IP address – the meaning of and definition.
IP address stands for Internet Protocol address. An IP address identifies a device on the internet and is used for communication between this device and the rest of the net. An IP address is comprised of a set of four numbers ranging between 0 and 255, e.g., 0.0.0.0 or 255.255.255.255. IP addresses can be either static (always the same), dynamic (changes every time you log on), public (what others on the web can see), or private (what only you can see).
How can I check the speed of my DNS server?
After you’ve changed the DNS server in Xbox, you can check the data provided under the network statistics.
If you want an even more geeky tool for Windows or Linux to check if you have the fastest DNS server possible, you can download the DNS Benchmark tool by Gibson Research Corporation.
DNS servers aside, your final speed will depend on your internet connection. Fx, you might experience slow ping numbers or upload speeds if you’re on a slow Wi-Fi network.
For more on how to reduce Ping, see fx this guide.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jan has played video games since the early 1980s. He loves getting immersed in video games as a way to take his mind off stuff when the outside world gets too scary. A lifelong gamer, the big interest led to a job as a lecturer on game sound at the University of Copenhagen and several written articles on video games for magazines.