As with every complex device, computers are known to experience problems. When you are trying to connect two computers, you have to deal with the machines and what is in the middle. If something is not working properly on any of these systems, the communication could experience performance problems.
Every computer that is connected to Internet that runs a service (usually a web service) needs to be located so the service can be used. For telephones we use numbers to locate people. On Internet we use words, for example to enter on this site you have to use www.mintywhite.com. There are some reasons why on Internet we use words instead of numbers:
- IP addresses, belong to a location and a country; if we only use numbers and for some reason you change your location, every link will connect to an invalid site.
- It makes it easier to have several machines use the same words. Google uses this technique with www.google.com, which has more than one Internet Protocol (IP) address. If for some reason one is down, the others can do the job.
Domain Name Servers (DNS) do that job. Their work is to translate a name to an IP address. This system is hierarchical so it is not just stored on one server. In this article, we take a look at some DNS problems that can slow your internet speed.
Client Not Working
The DNS clients perform two tasks:
- Cache every DNS query: so you don’t have to ask every time you want to request a web service.
- Register the full computer name of the computer to the DNS. (This task is not really important if you are not working on a corporate environment with active directory enabled.)
So, if this service is not working you can continue browsing but Internet seems slower. To check if the client is up and running, press WinKey + R type services.msc and press Enter.
The list of services will appear. Search the DNS Client and check the status. If it’s not started, right click the service and click Start.
Now we are going to test the connection between the two computers. To check the connection we have multiple tools:
Maybe the more known applications to do computer to computer connectivity testing is Ping. Ping sends a packet to a machine, in this case the DNS server, and waits for a response. But it has a drawback: there is no obligation by the server to answer that ping even if the machine is working. Many security programs, for example firewalls, block this sort of traffic.
To use the ping tool you need to open a command prompt:
Now you only have to type ping ip.address and press Enter to test the connection. You have to change ip.address to the IP of your DNS.
This tool is an advanced ping. The usage is the same as ping. It also has the same drawback that ping as it uses the same protocols.
Pathing shows information about the path, the packet has follow to reach the server.
This tool allows you to send a query to a DNS server. This way you can control if a server is working or not. Open a command prompt and type nslookup namepc and press Enter:
Here we see the DNS report the IP of www.mintywhite.com.
The question is quite simple. What happens if my DNS server fails? Of course you are not going to see any webpages. If we know that our DNS is not working can we do something? We can change our DNS to see if this solve the problem, you can read how to change the DNS server in Windows 7.
But we need to know a working DNS. My best choice is to use Google Public DNS. The IPs that Google is using for its DNS are:
If you use some other ways to solve DNS problems, please comment about it. I hope you enjoy reading this as much I enjoy writing it; I await any input you have.