OpenDNS vs. Google Public DNS

OpenDNS and Google Public DNS, which is best?

OpenDNS vs. Google Public DNS

Google launched a Public DNS service yesterday. They claim that by using their public DNS, you can:

In the introduction page, Google criticised other “open DNS resolvers”:

open DNS resolvers are vulnerable to being used to launch denial-of-service (DoS) attacks on other systems. To defend against such attacks, Google has implemented several recommended solutions to help guarantee the authenticity of the responses it receives from other name servers…

Sometimes, in the case of a query for a mistyped or non-existent domain name, the right answer means no answer, or an error message stating the domain name could not be resolved. Google Public DNS never blocks, filters, or redirects users, unlike some open resolvers and ISPs.

OpenDNS has responded to it:

People use OpenDNS because we are pioneers and innovators in the DNS space, offering the most secure recursive DNS service around. We run the largest DNS caches, the fastest resolvers, and we offer the most flexibility in controlling your DNS experience.

Google claims that this service is better because it has no ads or redirection. But you have to remember they are also the largest advertising and redirection company on the Internet. To think that Google’s DNS service is for the benefit of the Internet would be naive. They know there is value in controlling more of your Internet experience and I would expect them to explore that fully.

Pros and Cons

From my personal experience, it seems that Google Public DNS is faster. It is not just me. See Manu’s test results. He provides a shell script for testing.

In my tests, Google DNS consistently outperformed both OpenDNS and Level 3. For Americans the Level 3 server ( might offer as good performance as Google. But if you are living outside US and you care about your browsing experience you should switch now :)

Google Public DNS does not perform blocking or filtering of any kind. Good. OpenDNS hijacks search from address bar and shows yahoo search results which I hate. But they provide features like web filtering. If you are a network administrator, you run an internet café or you want to block your kids accessing unneeded sites from home, OpenDNS is the cheapest way to have web filtering.

That said, I’m going to stick with Google for the time being. At least, they bribed me with a Rs 11000 adsense cheque recently. :p


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Syam Kumar is the Owner and Editor of WebMaster View. He is based in Cochin, Kerala, India. His interests include information design concepts, standards compliant web development and Linux.

This entry was posted on Friday, December 4th, 2009 at 10:30 pm and modified by WebMaster View at 11:15 pm. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

Comments : 7

  1. I think I should be researching more about it before I use it. I’m so glad I read your post. I have been researching about this lately. This will be one of the articles I will remember when I decide. Thanks!

    Software Agent

  2. I think Googles OpenDNS is not a good idea. I think Google use all data for themselves.

    Werbeagentur Lübeck

  3. I personally use OpenDNS ,they are fast and secure than any other DNS i have tried. Im experiencing slower lookup with Google DNS., anyone facing the same problem?


  4. Dat is certainly a nice review.. I would like to ask a doubt. Will increase in use of openDNS affect the speed? I would also like to know more about the hijacking which aid Yahoo.


    1. I don’t think that increase in use would affect the speed.

      OpenDNS is getting paid by yahoo for showing their search results. Check the forum thread discussing this:

      Syam Kumar R

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