Fix DNS Server Not Responding Windows 10 (Actionable Guide)

This is a 100% functioning and actionable tutorial to dns server not responding windows 10 fix for ethernet and wifi internet on laptop models such as Dell, HP, Lenovo, and more. In this article, we’ll discover its causes and step-by-step solutions for a detected device or resource DNS error with QNA at the end.

dns server not responding windows 10 fix

Primary DNS Server Not Responding Windows 10 Fix

The DNS (Domain Name System) is a structure of resources available on the internet associated with different IP addresses responsible for connecting a domain with its host. The server then transfers the website’s information to the user’s device and browsers through the medium of DNS.

In the context of our website, is a hostname, also known as the domain name. The content of our website is remotely located on a computer hard disk of a certain IP address. Therefore, you are being able to watch this page because the DNS has successfully translated the hostname into our domain’s IP address. That’s the simple concept of DNS for normal internet users as they are equivalent to virtual phonebook addresses in real life.

Now, with that said, let’s learn how to fix windows 10 dns server not responding.

Similar: Playstation 4 Unresponsive DNS fix

1. Insert Manual DNS Addresses

  1. First, open ‘Windows Explorer’ or ‘This PC’.
  2. Click on the address bar, delete every text on it, type ‘Control Panel’ without apostrophes, and press Enter key on your keyboard. This will open up Control Panel.
  3. Now, navigate to Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center.
  4. Click on your active network name under ‘internet’ to launch its status.
  5. If you are using WiFi or ethernet cables, click on ‘Properties’.
    internet properties windows 10
  6. Select ‘Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)’ and click properties.
    internet protocol version 4 tcpipv4 properties
  7. Click on the radio button that says “Use the following DNS server addresses”.
    use the following dns server addresses
  8. In the preferred DNS server box, insert the value, and for alternate DNS insert
  9. In the end, check the box ‘Validate settings upon exit’ and click on ‘OK’ to end the process.

Note: the above custom domain name system addresses are provided by OpenDNS, which is secure as per their official website. However, there are more free DNS servers provided by companies that you can try as well such as Google DNS, Cloudflare, OpenNIC, and more. After performing this step, it should fix your dns server is not responding windows 10 error. Let’s move into the next solution if this didn’t help.

Read: Methods to solve dns probe errors on Ubuntu and linux operating systems

2. Update Network Adapters

For this fix, you might need a different device that has internet access to download the drivers and transfer files into the affected device. First of all, we need to uninstall the existing drivers.

Here’s how:

  1. Right-click the Start menu and select “Device Manager”.
  2. Scroll down and expand network adapters.
  3. Identify your system driver by looking at its name, which varies from device to device. For example, I am using a Dell laptop model on a WiFi Connection and my driver associated with it is “Intel (R) Dual Band Wireless-AC 3165”. After recognizing it, right-click on it.
  4. Select “uninstall the device”.
  5. Check “Delete the driver software for this device”.
  6. Click on “Uninstall” and wait for the process to complete.

When you restart your PC, all the default network adapters will be automatically installed. If they don’t install on auto, go to your brand’s official website and download drivers from there using a different device. Then transfer those files into your computer through a USB cable and install them. For Dell Windows 10 users powered by Intel processor, you can download network drivers here.

3. Load MAC Address manually

A MAC or Media Access Control Address is a set of total twelve digits UID (unique identifier) hardcoded to your computer hardware that looks like an IP Address. A common use of MAC Address in a network system is to identify a device that is trying to access a network connection.

Loading a physical MAC Address is the most common solution when device filtering is applied to a network or when its DNS is a custom set as described above. We can manually insert MAC addresses in two stages. The first step is to identify your computer’s MAC address, whose process is given below.

  • Press hotkeys “Windows + R”.
  • Type “cmd” in the run dialogue box.
  • Execute this syntax in the command prompt: ipconfig /all

When the above command runs, a long list of different information will appear on the screen. Find a physical address and note down the numbers next to it, which is your computer’s MAC Address. Now, we need to let the network know that this is our Mac Address in the following ways.

  1. Open your internet properties as described above (check solution 1, from steps 1 to 5).
  2. Select “Client For Microsoft Networks”.
  3. Click “Configure”.
  4. Switch to the “Advanced” tab.
  5. Select “Network Address” and put the physical address in the value box without dashes.
  6. Then click on “Ok” to save changes.

4. Flush and Renew DNS

Flushing DNS will clear away its cache (temporarily stored items) and renewing it will regenerate fresh records to fix minor DNS errors in windows 10. This operation is done in command prompt by providing administrative privileges to it.

First, go to the Cortana search box in the taskbar and type ‘command’. Then, right-click on the ‘Command Prompt’ app and select ‘Run As Administrative’. After that, execute the following commands one by one:

netsh int ip reset
netsh winsock reset
ipconfig /flushdns
ipconfig /renew

Restart the computer when done.

5. Extra solutions

Below are some extra solutions that you can help you fix the DNS server unavailable windows 10.

  • Restart router.
  • Contact Internet Service Provider company and inform if the network supply is down in the whole area.
  • Disable antivirus and firewall that might have applied DNS filtering.

Check: Android fix for dns errors (step by step)


1. what does DNS server not responding mean Windows 10?

It means that the windows computer was unable to establish an internet connection to the webserver where the files of a web page are stored.

2. what to do when DNS server is not responding windows 10?

When the DNS server isn't responding, you must first try to check if the internet is working fine on other devices on the same network and the issue is not originated from the ISP side. After that, you can apply custom DNS addresses manually, update network adapter drivers, flush/renew DNS, and insert mac addresses manually in the system. In addition to that, you can try resetting the router and disable any antivirus or firewall program such as Windows Defender which might be blocking network access. In many cases, such software avoids connection to harmful and risky sites that are flagged by the users for security reasons. All the actionable processes are mentioned above.

3. how do I reset my dns on windows 10?

In order to reset dns on windows 10, open the command prompt as administrator. Then run the syntax: ipconfig /flushdns

4. what does flushing a dns do?

Flushing DNS will clear, reset, and recreate any stored temporary, broken, and cache DNS records inside network properties.

5. Does flushing DNS speed up the internet?

Absolutely no. It will just reset the temporary cache records. Internet speed depends upon various factors, mainly the bandwidth offered by the ISP company and distance from the router if you are using WiFi.

Similar article: solutions to dns probe mac errors


In this way, we can fix dns server not responding windows 10 problem in many different ways. There are additional methods like modifying the router’s firmware that we have not included in the tutorial because they are risky and need an IT expert while performing the task while doing it safely. Nevertheless, did the methods mentioned above help you solve the primary DNS server not responding error in windows 10? Let us know in the comments below.