DNS changes to Mac or router?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Magrão, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Magrão macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2011

    Reading this post Mac Virus/Malware Info I was concerned to learn for the first time about vulnerability in the DNS protocol (see the section entitled 'Why am I being redirected to other sites?'). The link mentions that this problem is either in your Mac or in your router and goes on to provide details about fixing it in Mac OS X.

    I've read and re-read these instructions and read and re-read the various links and I understand all the steps, what I would need to do etc and, to a certain extent, why. However, what I want to clarify is where I should implement these changes, on my Mac or on my router?

    The DNS server currently listed in my Mac's Network Preferences points to the IP address of my LAN, where my router is acting as the DHCP server for my home network. My router however, is current set-up to get my DNS address from my ISP automatically. I can over-ride this of course, as I can also make the suggested changes to my Mac. But which should I do? One or both?

    My guess is that if I change the DNS on my router then anyone attached to my network would get the benefit of those changes. But, if I were to connect to another network, my Mac would still default to whatever DNS was served by the router it is attached to. Alternatively, if I change the DNS settings on my Mac, no matter where I'm attached, it will always use those settings for DNS. However, if I change the settings on both my Mac and my router, will it have any adverse effects?

    Basic question (for those short on time :)):
    • Do I make DNS changes on my router, my Mac, or both?

    Thanks for reading!
  2. mulo macrumors 68020


    Aug 22, 2010
    Behind you
    why not do both, I force both my router and mac to use opendns, that way any computer at my house uses open dns, and everywhere i go, i'm still using open dns :)
  3. chrisgeleven macrumors 6502

    Apr 28, 2002
    Manchester, NH
    I recommend doing changes to your router if you had to pick one. Then everything on your home network will get the DNS servers automatically via DHCP.

    While you can do the changes to your Mac directly, I have run into issues where this could break access to certain devices on your local network (for example, not being able to print since the DNS servers your Mac uses don't know about your wireless printer). I think this is because bonjour uses your local DNS server.
  4. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    I run the custom DNS settings on my router.

    The only issue I have had with setting custom DNS on my Macbook is a couple times on hotel wireless I have run into cases where they will not let you access wireless unless you are running the hotels ISP's default DNS.
  5. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I would do both, especially if you have a portable Mac and may not always be connected to the same router.
  6. Magrão thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2011
    Thanks all for your answers... I just did a namebench test though, and it finished by advising me that my current DNS servers are faster than using any others. Any pointers?

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