A first look at Yandex.DNS

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 12, 2013
Updated • Nov 12, 2013

The Domain Name System (DNS) is one of the cornerstones of the Internet's infrastructure. It "translates" domain names into IP addresses. Whenever you open a site like ghacks.net, DNS is used to look up the IP address of the server to make the connection.

Queries are cached by many operation systems to speed things up, and some browsers predict activities to look them up before the user even clicks on links.

Most Internet users do not come into contact with DNS or the configuration thereof. They use the DNS of their Internet Service Provider (ISP) and that is it.

This may not be the best move for them in terms of speed, safety or reliability though. That's why third party DNS services such as OpenDNS or GoogleDNS have risen in popularity over the last couple of years.

Yandex DNS

Yandex.DNS is a DNS service by Russia's most popular search engine Yandex. The service offers three different modes (configurations) that users need to pick one from:

  • Basic performs DNS look ups but does not offer filters. (IPs: and
  • Safe will protect automatically from malicious requests. Uses Sophos technology and internal anti-virus software. (IPs: and
  • Family blocks adult contents from being loaded. (IPs: and

If you want unfiltered results, basic is the way to go, while both Safe and Family may be used to block some contents from showing up on your computer. This is similar to how OpenDNS operates, even though the latter offers more customization and filtering options for users who have signed up for the service.

Yandex, being a Russian company, has a strong presence in Russia. How fast are the company's servers if you are using them from a different location in the world? The company notes that it operates servers in more than 80 different locations worldwide to ensure fast look ups and service.

A quick check with DNS Benchmark revealed that it is not as fast as Google, UltraDNS or OpenDNS, especially when it comes to cached queries, but that the difference is less than the tenth of a second.

yandex dns benchmark

Note: your results may vary depending on your location in the world and the servers you connect to.

Setting up Yandex.DNS

Set up may differ depending on which operating system and device you are using. Yandex offers instructions for all systems on its main website (scroll down).

I would like to demonstrate how to add the DNS server on Windows 7, the operating system I'm using. The configuration is similar for other Windows systems, even though the way may differ.

  1. Click on the start button and select Control Panel on the right.
  2. Select View network status and tasks under Network and Internet.
  3. Click on the link next to Connections in the "view your active networks" section.
  4. Click on the Properties button.
  5. Locate Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4), select it, and click on Properties.
  6. Select "Use the following DNS server addresses.
  7. Add the Yandex DNS servers that you want to use.

You can alternatively set them up in the router. If you set them up on your computer, only the connections made by your computer are looked up using Yandex's DNS service. If you configure the DNS in the router, all connections made from all devices use it.

Closing Words

Yandex.DNS offers an alternative to -- the mostly -- US operated third party DNS services. I'm not saying that it is more private or secure than those, only that it is an alternative.

The DNS service was not the fastest, and if speed is your main concern, you may want to select one that performs better. If you want better filtering options, Open DNS or a comparable service is the way to go as they offer better customization options.

Now Read: Quickly change between different DNS configurations


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Doesn’t Windows 8 know that www. or http:// are passe ?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 4, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Well it is a bit difficulty to distinguish between name.com domains and files for instance.

    2. Leonidas Burton said on September 4, 2023 at 4:51 am

      I know a service made by google that is similar to Google bookmarks.

  2. VioletMoon said on August 16, 2023 at 5:26 pm

    @Ashwin–Thankful you delighted my comment; who knows how many “gamers” would have disagreed!

  3. Karl said on August 17, 2023 at 10:36 pm


    The comments section under this very article (3 comments) is identical to the comments section found under the following article:

    Not sure what the issue is, but have seen this issue under some other articles recently but did not report it back then.

  4. Anonymous said on August 25, 2023 at 11:44 am

    Omg a badge!!!
    Some tangible reward lmao.

    It sucks that redditors are going to love the fuck out of it too.

  5. Scroogled said on August 25, 2023 at 10:57 pm

    With the cloud, there is no such thing as unlimited storage or privacy. Stop relying on these tech scums. Purchase your own hardware and develop your own solutions.

    1. lollmaoeven said on August 27, 2023 at 6:24 am

      This is a certified reddit cringe moment. Hilarious how the article’s author tries to dress it up like it’s anything more than a png for doing the reddit corporation’s moderation work for free (or for bribes from companies and political groups)

  6. El Duderino said on August 25, 2023 at 11:14 pm

    Almost al unlmited services have a real limit.

    And this comment is written on the dropbox article from August 25, 2023.

  7. John G. said on August 26, 2023 at 1:29 am

    First comment > @ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    For the God’s sake, fix the comments soon please! :[

  8. Kalmly said on August 26, 2023 at 4:42 pm

    Yes. Please. Fix the comments.

  9. Kim Schmidt said on September 3, 2023 at 3:42 pm

    With Google Chrome, it’s only been 1,500 for some time now.

    Anyone who wants to force me in such a way into buying something that I can get elsewhere for free will certainly never see a single dime from my side. I don’t even know how stupid their marketing department is to impose these limits on users instead of offering a valuable product to the paying faction. But they don’t. Even if you pay, you get something that is also available for free elsewhere.

    The algorithm has also become less and less savvy in terms of e.g. English/German translations. It used to be that the bot could sort of sense what you were trying to say and put it into different colloquialisms, which was even fun because it was like, “I know what you’re trying to say here, how about…” Now it’s in parts too stupid to translate the simplest sentences correctly, and the suggestions it makes are at times as moronic as those made by Google Translations.

    If this is a deep-learning AI that learns from users’ translations and the phrases they choose most often – which, by the way, is a valuable, moneys worthwhile contribution of every free user to this project: They invest their time and texts, thereby providing the necessary data for the AI to do the thing as nicely as they brag about it in the first place – alas, the more unprofessional users discovered the translator, the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, the greater the aggregate of linguistically illiterate users has become, and the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, as it now learns the drivel of every Tom, Dick and Harry out there, which is why I now get their Mickey Mouse language as suggestions: the inane language of people who can barely spell the alphabet, it seems.

    And as a thank you for our time and effort in helping them and their AI learn, they’ve lowered the limit from what was once 5,000 to now 1,500…? A big “fuck off” from here for that! Not a brass farthing from me for this attitude and behaviour, not in a hundred years.

  10. Anonymous said on September 28, 2023 at 8:19 am

    When will you put an end to the mess in the comments?

  11. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 9:36 am

    Ghacks comments have been broken for too long. What article did you see this comment on? Reply below. If we get to 20 different articles we should all stop using the site in protest.

    I posted this on [https://www.ghacks.net/2023/09/28/reddit-enforces-user-activity-tracking-on-site-to-push-advertising-revenue/] so please reply if you see it on a different article.

    1. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 11:01 am

      Comment redirected me to [https://www.ghacks.net/2012/08/04/add-search-the-internet-to-the-windows-start-menu/] which seems to be the ‘real’ article it is attached to

  12. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 10:48 am

    Comment redirected me to [https://www.ghacks.net/2012/08/04/add-search-the-internet-to-the-windows-start-menu/] which seems to be the ‘real’ article it is attached to

  13. Mystique said on September 28, 2023 at 12:13 pm

    Article Title: Reddit enforces user activity tracking on site to push advertising revenue
    Article URL: https://www.ghacks.net/2023/09/28/reddit-enforces-user-activity-tracking-on-site-to-push-advertising-revenue/

    No surprises here. This is just the beginning really. I cannot see a valid reason as to why anyone would continue to use the platform anymore when there are enough alternatives fill that void.

  14. justputthispostanywhere said on September 29, 2023 at 3:59 am

    I’m not sure if there is a point in commenting given that comments seem to appear under random posts now, but I’ll try… this comment is for https://www.ghacks.net/2023/09/28/reddit-enforces-user-activity-tracking-on-site-to-push-advertising-revenue/

    My temporary “solution”, if you can call it that, is to use a VPN (Mullvad in my case) to sign up for and access Reddit via a European connection. I’m doing that with pretty much everything now, at least until the rest of the world catches up with GDPR. I don’t think GDPR is a magical privacy solution but it’s at least a first step.

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