Reviews

1.1.1.1 Review: Faster and Safer Internet, for Free

The 1.1.1.1 DNS is a free Domain Name System (DNS) service. The public DNS service and servers are maintained and owned by Cloudflare. Announced on April 1, 2018, it is claimed by Cloudflare to be “the Internet’s fastest, privacy-first consumer DNS service”.

What is DNS?

The DNS is the phonebook of the Internet. When you try to access information online via domain names (like our website thedetechtor.com), web browsers will interact through Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. DNS translates these domain names to IP addresses so browsers can load Internet resources. Each device that is connected to the Internet has a unique IP address which other machines use to find the device. DNS servers eliminate the need to memorize IP these addresses such as 192.168.1.1 (in IPv4), or more complex newer alphanumeric IP addresses such as 2400:cb00:2048:1::c629:d7a2 (in IPv6).

By default, it is your internet service providers (ISP) DNS service that connects you to the internet, but it logs the websites you visit. If your ISP is logging your information, this means that hackers and snoopers will be able to do the same.

According to Cloudflare, with 1.1.1.1 these problems will be resolved as well as giving you faster connection speeds.

What is 1.1.1.1?

Cloudflare’s 1.1.1.1 is a DNS resolver. Once you have configured it on your devices, all your connection requests will be routed through it. It takes your requests and resolves them at much faster speeds (up to 28% faster according to the official website) and deletes all DNS logs after 24 hours.

Query speed when using 1.1.1.1
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1.1.1.1 is proving you with an alternative to Google’s Public DNS.

What About Privacy?

Cloudflare insists that it doesn’t your IP address with 1.1.1.1. However, it will log “anonymized DNS query data sent to the Cloudflare Resolver” according to their website. The company promises not to sell this information to 3rd party advertisers but will share some of it with its partner APNIC to better understand DNS and to reduce DDoS attacks.

Of course, there is always the issue of having to trust Cloudflare and APNIC not to record your information.

Connecting to 1.1.1.1 on Laptops

On Windows

  1. Click on the Start menu, then click on Control Panel.
  2. Click on Network and Internet.
  3. Click on Change Adapter Settings.
  4. Right-click on the Wi-Fi network you are connected to, then click Properties.
  5. Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (or Version 6 if desired).
  6. Click Properties.
  7. Write down any existing DNS server entries for future reference.
  8. Click Use The Following DNS Server Addresses.
  9. Replace those addresses with the 1.1.1.1 DNS addresses: – For IPv4: 1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1 – For IPv6: 2606:4700:4700::1111 and 2606:4700:4700::1001
  10. Click OK, then Close.
  11. Restart your browser. You may need to flush your DNS cache too.

On macOS

  1. Open System Preferences.
  2. Search for DNS Servers and select it from the drop-down.
  3. Click the + button to add a DNS Server and enter 1.1.1.1
  4. Click + again and enter 1.0.0.1.
  5. Click Ok, then click Apply. You may need to flush your DNS cache too.

On Linux

  1. Click the Applications icon on the left menu bar.
  2. Click Settings, then Network.
  3. Find your internet connection on the right pane, then click the gear icon.
  4. Click the IPv4 or IPv6 tab to view your DNS settings.
  5. Set the “Automatic” toggle on the DNS entry to Off.
  6. Provide the 1.1.1.1 DNS addresses in the DNS entries field: – For IPv4: 1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1 – For IPv6: 2606:4700:4700::1111 and 2606:4700:4700::1001
  7. Click Apply, then restart your browser. You may need to flush your DNS cache too.

The 1.1.1.1 Mobile App

On November 11, 2018, Cloudflare announced a mobile application of their 1.1.1.1 service for Android and iOS then later added a VPN to its DNS resolver app called WARP. It reroutes your traffic to make it even quicker and also encrypts it where possible for added security and privacy. The company also offers a paid subscription called WARP + which uses Cloudflare’s Argo technology to further increase speeds and network reliability.

However, this VPN differs from the ones we are used, because it does not give you the possibility of changing your location to trick websites and services. Instead, it will just be working behind the scenes to increase speed and privacy. Compared to most VPNs it is not supposed to drain much battery.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for something to speed up your browsing and add an extra layer of privacy, we definitely recommend trying out 1.1.1.1’s DNS service and downloading the app for your smartphones. However, if you are looking for something that allows you to change your location so you can use BBC IPlayer outside the UK or access a different country’s Netflix, and want the best possible privacy and security, we recommend getting a proper VPN.

Scott Hickman

Founder of The Detechtor and host of The Detechtor Podcast | Techy | Politics enthusiast | Musician | Loves coffee ☕️

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