A common issue when you connect your Windows 10 computer to a Wi-Fi hotspot or your home or work network with Internet access is that the Internet connection may fail to work for a number of reasons. One of the possible reasons may be related to DNS (Domain Name System) server failures and in those situations, when you run a troubleshoot, you may come across the following error message in the problems found window:
“The DNS server isn’t responding
Your computer appears to be correctly configured, but the device or resource (DNS server) is not responding”
The DNS (Domain Name System) is a name resolution service that is used by Internet Providers all around the world. The role of this system is basically to translate hostnames (for example www.howtoremove.guide) to IP addresses (126.96.36.199) and this way to make it easier for users to surf the web.
Without DNS service, we basically would have to remember the IP address of every single website that we want to visit in order to tell our computer where to find it. And since it is much easier to remember names like www.howtoremove.guide rather than a sequence of numbers like 188.8.131.52, the DNS does the hard job to convert those names into corresponding IP addresses in order to tell our computer where to access a given website.
Computers store different DNS responses and remember them so that the DNS request does not have to run every time you connect to a given domain name. For instance, once your computer has associated an IP address with a domain name, it will remember it for a period of time so that the next time you visit a website that you have previously visited, the connection will happen automatically and much faster. This helps the DNS service to improve its speed by skipping the DNS request period.
If “DNS server is not responding” error occurs, basically, your device will not be able to connect the Internet. There are a few possible things that may cause this error and, on this page, we will describe them. What is more, we will show you a few quick fixes to the “DNS server is not responding” problem with the help of which you may be able to diagnose and repair the DNS error.
The first thing that probably comes to your mind when there is a problem with the Internet connection is to reset your router or modem. Doing this may help fix the “DNS server is not responding” issue in no time. That’s why we suggest you try this possibility first. Press the On/Off button on your router to shut it down, wait for a couple of seconds and then simply turn in On again. If your router does not have an On/Off button, then just unplug it from the power supply, give it a few seconds, and then plug it again. When the router starts again, restart your computer and see if this has resolved the issue.
Sometimes, a problem with your router configuration can cause the “DNS server is not responding” error and in this case, to fix it, you may need to reset the router to its default settings. For that you need to open the configuration web page of the router and navigate to the “Reset” option. In case you cannot access the web-based setup page of your router but you still want to reset it to its default factory settings, press and hold the “Reset” button for a few seconds. Keep in mind though that, once the router is reset to its factory settings, this will reset its password as well.
Do a driver update
Another possible cause of the “DNS server is not responding” error could be an old or incorrect driver. That’s why the fix for this is to install the latest network adapter drivers on your computer.
The easiest way to do that automatically is with the help of a program called Snappy Driver Installer. This program is a free and powerful driver update tool for Windows which can store driver collections offline. This way, Snappy Driver Installer (SDI) can quickly access driver updates even in cases where there is no Internet connection. The program works with 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 10 and lower and basically downloads driver packs of various hardware like network adapters, sound devices, video cards, and more. SDI can show you invalid and duplicate drivers and can separate the updates that require system restart from those that don’t so you can have control over them. To download the program and use it to update your drivers, however, you will need a computer with Internet connection. SDI can be downloaded from there: https://sdi-tool.org
After the program finishes with downloading and installing drivers all you need to do is restart Windows 10 and try to connect to the Internet to see if this has fixed the DNS issue.
Another way to update your drivers is to do it manually but for that, you will again need a computer that is connected to the Internet. Go to the website of the network adapter’s manufacturer and download the latest driver. Then put it on your USB and connect the USB to the computer with DNS problem. Next, follow these steps:
• Type “device manager” in the search box and open it.
• Go to “Network adapters” section.
• Right-click on your network adapter and choose “Update Driver”.
A notification will ask you how do you want to search for drivers:
• search automatically for updated driver
• browse your computer for driver
Since you don’t have Internet connection, select the second option.
Then, navigate to the driver on your USB and follow the instructions.
Once you are done with the installation of the new driver, restart your computer and see if your DSN issue is fixed.
Change The DNS Server
Sometimes, there might be a problem with your IP DNS server and that could be the cause for the “DNS server is not responding” error in Windows 10. To fix that, you can try to change your DNS server with a free alternative Domain Name System such as Google Public DNS. This service is offered to users all around the world and is maintained and owned by Google. Here is how to change your DNS server to Google’s DNS server:
• Go to your Network Connections settings – Right-click the Start menu and choose “Network Connections”, or navigate to Settings and select “Network & Internet”.
• In the Network & Internet window, navigate to your connection on the left pane and then go to the right pane and select “Change adapter options”.
• Then, from the drop down menu that opens right-click on your connection and select “Properties”.
• Next, select “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)” and click “Properties”.
• Once you are inside the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) Properties window, choose “Use the following DNS server addresses”.
• Enter 184.108.40.206 as the “Preferred DNS server” and 220.127.116.11 as the “Alternate DNS server”.
• Next click “OK” to save the changes and see if this has fixed the problem with the “DNS server is not responding” error.
Enter Media Access Control address (MAC address) Manually
A Media Access Control address (MAC address) of a computer is a unique identifier, assigned to network interfaces, that is used as a network address for most IEEE 802 network technologies, such as Wi-Fi, Internet and Ethernet. The MAC address is usually assigned by the manufacturer of a network interface controller and is stored in the card’s read-only memory or other firmware mechanism. Sometimes, entering the MAC address manually may help to fix the “DNS server is not responding” error, but for that you first need to find it using the Command Prompt and a specific command.
Now, the Command Prompt is a command line interpreter application which is available in most Windows operating systems, including Windows 10. It is generally used to run certain commands, most of which are related to automating tasks through certain scripts and batch files, performing advanced administrative functions, troubleshooting and solving different Windows issues, etc. Some commands in Windows, such as the one that we are going to use to fix the DNS issue, may require that you run them with administrator level privileges.
To open Command Prompt, simply type “command prompt” in the Search section and right-click the “Command Prompt” result. Next, choose “Run as administrator” as shown on the picture below.
After you select “Run as administrator”, a User Account Control window will ask you to allow the Command Prompt to make changes to your computer. You need to click “Yes”.
Then, in the opened Command Prompt window, type the following command:
“ipconfig /all” and press “Enter” from your keyboard.
A list of information will appear on a black window. You need to navigate to “Physical Address” and write it down somewhere so you can use it later for the next steps.
The next step after you have acquired your MAC address is to configure your network connection manually. To do that Right-click on the Start menu and select “Network Connections”. Next go to “Settings” and click “Network & Internet”.
Select your connection from the left pane and then go to the right pane and click on “Change adapter options”.
On the window that opens, Right-click on your connection and from the drop-down menu select “Properties”
Once you are in “Properties” window, select “Client for Microsoft Networks” and click “Configure”.
Next choose the “Advanced” tab and select “Network Address”.
On the right pane select “Value:” and enter your MAC address (Physical Address), which you wrote down when you entered the “ipconfig/ all” command in Command Prompt.
Finally click “OK” and see if the “DNS server is not responding” error has been resolved.
Reset Your IP And Clear DNS Cache
This method again involves using the Command Prompt and executing “netsh” and “ipconfig” commands with it.
The Netsh command basically allows you to, either locally or remotely, display or modify the network configuration of a computer that is currently running.
Ipconfig is a command used to display the current configuration of the installed IP stack on a networked computer. With it, you can flush and reset the contents of the DNS client resolver cache and renew DHCP configuration.
In order to run, both commands require administrator privileges in the Command Prompt. Here is how to execute them:
Open Command Prompt by typing “command prompt” in Search and right-click on the “Command Prompt” result.
Select “Run as administrator” to give it administrative privileges.
A User Account Control will ask you if you allow the Command Prompt to make changes to your computer. Click “Yes”.
Next, in the Comman Prompt window that appears type the following commands:
netsh int ip reset
netsh winsock reset
Press Enter after typing each command to execute it.
Finally, restart your computer and see if this helps to fix the “DNS server is not responding” error in your Windows 10.
Run Safe Mode on your Computer
Safe Mode is a start-up mode in Windows operating systems such as Windows 10 and earlier versions which runs the system in a very basic state and uses a limited set of programs. Safe Mode is used when the operating system does not start properly or does not operate normally and can help to troubleshoot problems of different kind.
Boot your Windows 10 in Safe Mode and see if you still have DNS problems. If you don’t have network connection issues when running in this mode, then the chance is you most probably have some third-party software that is causing DNS problem when running Windows in normal mode. Sometimes, security or network-related application can interfere with your DNS and in this case, you need to find and uninstall them to resolve the “DNS server is not responding” issue.
Here is how to boot Windows 10 in Safe Mode by using the Settings Menu:
1.Click the ‘Start’ button in the bottom left of your screen and choose “Settings”.
2. From the Settings Window navigate to “Update & Security”.
3. From the left navigation pane select “Recovery”
4. Under “Advanced startup” click the “Restart now” button
5. The computer will restart again and an option screen will appear.
6. From the screen, select ‘Troubleshoot’ > ‘Advanced options’ > ‘Startup Settings’ > ‘Restart’.
7. Another restart of the computer will follow after which another list of options will appear.
8. Select the option to start your computer in Safe Mode and follow the instructions.
9. Hold down F5 or 5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking (if you’d like to have Internet access).
When you want to leave Safe Mode, just restart your computer and when it boots up again you will be back to your normal Windows 10 state.
Disable Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6)
Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) is the most recent version of the Internet Protocol (IP). This is a communication protocol the role of which is to provide an identification and location system for computers on networks and routes traffic across the Internet. In some cases, disabling the IPv6 feature might help to resolve the “DNS server is not responding” error and might be worth the try. The fastest and the easiest way to disable IPv6 on Windows 10 is through “Network and Sharing Center” and here is how to do it:
• Go to Control Panel, navigate to “Network and Internet” and click on “View network status and tasks”.
Select your connection.
Next, in your connection status window, click on “Properties”.
In The Properties window, navigate to “Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6)” and remove the checkbox to disable it. Finally, click “OK” and see if this has fixed the “DNS server is not responding” error.
Disable Your Antivirus
One of the reasons for the “DNS server is not responding” error to occur is due to installed antivirus software. As we said above, third-party security applications may sometimes interfere with the DNS settings that’s why we suggest you try to disable the security software that you have installed and see if this might help to fix the problem. If disabling the antivirus software fixes the issue, then you might want to switch to a different antivirus program for protection which does not cause DNS interference.
Disable Secondary Connections
More than one network connection available on your computer may also sometimes cause DNS issues. If this is the case, try disabling the other connections and leave only the current connection enabled. Here is how to do that:
Go to Network Connection settings. Right-click the Start menu and select “Network Connections”, or go to Settings and click “Network & Internet”.
In the Network & Internet settings window, select your connection type from the left pane. Then click “Change adapter options” on the right pane.
Right-click on each of the other connections that appear in the window and select “Disable” from the drop-down menu.
Disable Windows Update Peer-to-peer Feature
Windows 10 has come with a new feature that is a new peer-to-peer (P2P) delivery update mechanism, which helps to save download bandwidth. The P2P option, for instance, can download a Windows update once, and then use the source computer to spread the update to all computers on your local network. In some cases, this feature, despite helpful may interfere with the DNS, thus, disabling it might actually fix the “DNS server is not responding” issue. Here is how to disable this feature:
Go to Settings and select “Update & Security”.
Next, navigate to “Advanced options” under “Update settings” and click on it.
And in the Advanced options window, select “Delivery Optimization”.
Finally, in the Delivery Optimization window, turn off the “Allow downloads from other PCs” option from the switch. Then check if there is still the “DNS server is not responding” error or is resolved.
We hope that you find the methods described here helpful. In case you need more assistance, don’t hesitate to drop us a message in the comments section below the article or just to tell us what worked for you. If the “DNS server is not responding” error is still present after you’ve tried all of the methods above, then there might be a problem with your Internet Provider. In that case, contact them and wait until they fix the technical issues from their side.