Update: Norton DNS is available on a new website and now called Norton ConnectSafe. You find the most recent IP addresses and setup information on the website.
The domain name system is a naming system for computers and other devices connected to private computer networks or the Internet. One of its most important tasks is to translate domain names (e.g. ghacks.net) into IP addresses that computer use for communication purposes.
Most Internet users use their Internet Service Provider as the DNS provider, often without their knowledge. This may not always be the optimal solution depending on the provider's infrastructure, network speed and handling of domain names that cannot be resolved as well as a country's censorship implementations.
The last two aspects might need some clarification. Many IPSs display custom search pages if a domain name cannot be resolved. They do that to cash in on the user's searches. This can be frustrating to the user who may prefer to get a simple error page in the browser instead.
Some countries use the domain name system to block access to web contents and other resources.
Using a different DNS provider can speed up domain look up times, reduce web censorship and block custom error pages by Internet providers. Many DNS providers are also offering filters of their own, for instance parental controls or automatic filters for known malicious sites on the Internet.
Symantec is the latest company to enter the DNS provider market with Norton DNS which is currently offered as a public beta.
The easiest way to use the settings is to change the DNS settings to one of the following ones:
Other includes sites that offer mature content, violence and several other topics.
Symantec offers in depth instructions for Windows and Mac OS X on the official Norton DNS website.
Norton DNS promises the same advantages that Google offered when they introduced Google Public DNS back in December of 2009.
Norton DNS Public Beta offers you a faster, safer, and more reliable Internet experience.
The Norton DNS website and FAQ do not contain lots of information about how it is faster, safer and more reliable than the standard DNS provider. Norton seems to be using information from Norton Safeweb to block malicious site requests automatically. Similar services are offered by other DNS providers such as OPEN DNS as well.
Symantec seems to have plans to expand the product in the future naming parental controls in the FAQ as one of the planned features. It is likely that the service will get integrated into Symantec and Norton products once it comes out of beta.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.