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How To Speed Up Web Browsing on Any Device the Google Way

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Jun
09

I have been into a lot research on how to speed up my web page loading time that I almost exhausted all efforts in reaching my goal. I already tried different caching plugins, Google PageSpeed Service, MaxCDN, CloudFlare etc. until I came up with a combination that works with my shared hosting plan. But then again after reflecting with my experiences using these services and tools, I finally realized that maybe it isn’t my site pages that has a problem. Maybe it’s my Chrome browser on my desktop PC and on my Galaxy Note 2 as well as the Safari web browser on my iPad 2 that is causing all the lags. In this post I will show how to speed up web browsing using some tips from Google. If you want to know the solution without knowing how this trick works, just skip the next paragraphs and jump to end of this post and look for the step by step guide. But if you’re like me, you can appreciate the things around you if you know how it works. Read on.

When your internet service provider’s DNS fails, all else fails. Browsing depends on many factors that affects how it renders all the elements in a web page. And one critical factor that affect web browsing speed is the never ending process of IP address to friendly web page name transalation. Under the hood, web browser communicates to the world wide web not via human readable names but via IP addresses. When you fire up your Chrome or Firefox to visit your Facebook page, the url ‘www.facebook.com’ will be translated to a machine readable set of numbers so that your ISP would know how to locate Facebook servers from millions or perhaps billions of servers located around the world. If your ISP was able to locate a server from Facebook datacenters, your Facebook page that you requested will be serve on your browser. Ideally, this process happens at an instant that you really do not have to bother. But problems sufaces unexpectedly.

Google Public DNS servers

Google Public DNS servers can be the best alternative if your ISP fails you.

In reality there are numerous translation that is happening on a single page. For example, once you scroll down on your Facebook timeline that contains Youtube videos and  images from Tumblr or Pinterest, these resources needs to be fetch from their respective location so that your browser can display it properly. So just imagine if the process of translating IP addresses to what humans can understand and vice-versa is somewhat slow or is not being handled properly by your ISP. It could mean slow browsing experience even though you’re subscribed to a premium bandwidth.

Google Public DNS to the rescue. I think you now have a very slight idea of the Google trick that I will teach you. Yes. It’s about changing your DNS settings to use Google’s own public DNS servers to do the translation for you. Just imagine Google doing all the dirty work instead of your server’s ISP that is already overwhelmed with request from the likes of you. Google is Google. Their servers are scattered all over the world and billions of users utilize their services like YouTube, Google+, Google Hangouts, Gtalk, Google Alerts, Google Adsense etc. So just imagine the benefits that you can get by just using their public DNS servers for free. To use Google’s own servers, you have to follow the step by step guides below. I posted here Google guides for Windows, Mac OS X, mobile device (smartphones, tablets etc.) and router for you to follow. For other users, you can go directly to this link and look for the appropriate guide for you.

Google Public DNS servers

Google Public DNS hopes to provide a higher level of security, performance and accurate results.

The step by step instructions presented here can be different on your computer or mobile device OS. If you find this inappropriate in your situation, please consult your device provider’s documentation for more information. Please remember that you should backup your DNS configuration by taking notes of the IP addresses provided by your ISP. If your device or computer is configured to use ‘Obtain IP address automatically’ then just tick that radio button again to revert back to your previous settings.

[learn_more caption=”Changing DNS server settings on Microsoft Windows 7″]

  1. Go the Control Panel.
  2. Click Network and Internet, then Network and Sharing Center, and click Change adapter settings.
  3. Select the connection for which you want to configure Google Public DNS. For example:
  • To change the settings for an Ethernet connection, right-click Local Area Connection, and click Properties.
  • To change the settings for a wireless connection, right-click Wireless Network Connection, and click Properties.

If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

  1. Select the Networking tab. Under This connection uses the following items, select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) or Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) and then click Properties.
  2. Click Advanced and select the DNS tab. If there are any DNS server IP addresses listed there, write them down for future reference, and remove them from this window.
  3. Click OK.
  4. Select Use the following DNS server addresses. If there are any IP addresses listed in the Preferred DNS server or Alternate DNS server, write them down for future reference.
  5. Replace those addresses with the IP addresses of the Google DNS servers:
    • For IPv4: 8.8.8.8 and/or 8.8.4.4.
    • For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844
  6. Restart the connection you selected in step 3.
  7. Test that your setup is working correctly; see Testing your new settings below.
  8. Repeat the procedure for additional network connections you want to change.

[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Changing DNS server settings on Mac OS 10.5″]

  1. From the Apple menu, click System Preferences, then click Network.
  2. If the lock icon in the lower left-hand corner of the window is locked, click the icon to make changes, and when prompted to authenticate, enter your password.
  3. Select the connection for which you want to configure Google Public DNS. For example:
    • To change the settings for an Ethernet connection, select Built-In Ethernet, and click Advanced.
    • To change the settings for a wireless connection, select Airport, and click Advanced.
  4. Select the DNS tab.
  5. Click + to replace any listed addresses with, or add, the Google IP addresses at the top of the list:
    • For IPv4: 8.8.8.8 and/or 8.8.4.4.
    • For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844
  6. Click Apply and OK.
  7. Test that your setup is working correctly; see Testing your new settings below.
  8. Repeat the procedure for additional network connections you want to change.

[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”To change your DNS settings on a router:”]

  1. In your browser, enter the IP address to access the router’s administration console.
  2. When prompted, enter the password to access network settings.
  3. Find the screen in which DNS server settings are specified.
  4. If there are IP addresses specified in the fields for the primary and seconday DNS servers, write them down for future reference.
  5. Replace those addresses with the Google IP addresses:
    • For IPv4: 8.8.8.8 and/or 8.8.4.4.
    • For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844
  6. Save and exit.
  7. Restart your browser.

[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”To change your settings on a mobile device:”]

  1. Go to the screen in which wi-fi settings are specified.
  2. Find the screen in which DNS server settings are specified.
  3. If there are IP addresses specified in the fields for the primary and seconday DNS servers, write them down for future reference.
  4. Replace those addresses with the Google IP addresses:
    • For IPv4: 8.8.8.8 and/or 8.8.4.4.
    • For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844
  5. Save and exit.

[/learn_more]

To test that the Google DNS resolver is working:

  1. From your browser, type in a hostname (such as http://www.google.com/). If it resolves correctly, bookmark the page, and try accessing the page from the bookmark. If both of these tests work, everything is working correctly. If not, go to step 2.
  2. From your browser, type in a fixed IP address. You can use http://18.62.0.96/ (which points to the website http://www.eecs.mit.edu/) as the URL*. If this works correctly, bookmark the page, and try accessing the page from the bookmark. If these tests work (but step 1 fails), then there is a problem with your DNS configuration; check the steps above to make sure you have configured everything correctly. If these tests do not work, go to step 3.
  3. Roll back the DNS changes you made and run the tests again. If the tests still do not work, then there is a problem with your network settings; contact your ISP or network administrator for assistance.

* Google thanks MIT for granting permission to use this URL for the purposes of testing web connectivity.

Once you’re done, you can restart your router or desktop PC or mobile device so that the changes will take effect immediately. However if there’s no improvement on your browsing experience or your newly DNS settings is not working by using the test above, then maybe you have a different problem that only your ISP can solve. But before resorting to asking help from your ISP’s helpdesk, make sure to try reinstalling your  browser first then conduct a test again whether your browsing experience will improve or not. Most of the time, corrupted or outdated browser plugins or extensions affect your internet surfing speed so give yourself a favor before going out for help. 😉

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