December 03, 2009

Google Launches Public DNS

Google may soon start wresting control of another important chunk of the internet. DNS (Domain Name Service) is a critical component of modern networks (including that really big one called the enter-something) and allows you to type in "www.paulhite.com" instead of the cryptic string of numbers that your computer actually uses. Now, having developed it's own presentation protocol (SPDY) and programming language (Go), Google would like to add another course to this meal: Google Public DNS.

Google's proposal is that you should use their shiny new service in place of the DNS servers commonly provided by an ISP. They currently have two IP addresses for you to use:

8.8.8.8
8.8.4.4

The benefit here is that each of these addresses could point to any number of servers, strategically placed throughout the world to give you a decent response time no matter where you are at (theoretically). And since Google already has a great resource from which to pull cached information, their DNS servers should not have to do a whole lot of searching to resolve your forward lookups. The benefit to Google is that they can use unresolved requests to display advertisements instead of traditional error messages. Google claims, however, that the primary concern is increasing the overall speed of the web.

It's all been done before though, the most popular existing service being OpenDNS at the moment. Early test results are showing little improvement with Google DNS over OpenDNS, but the tech-giant is bound to have something enticing planned to go with this service.

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