How To Fix “DNS Server Isn’t Responding” in Windows 10

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DNS Server Isn’t Responding

With the inaccessibility of DNS servers, the sites that you are looking for cannot be accessed. With DNS, the most widely encountered problem is, ‘the DNS server isn’t responding’ error.

A probable factor causing such trouble may be that the default DNS server of your ISP might be temporarily down, misconfigured in your settings, or perhaps has moved to a new server. This article provides the plausible fixes to the DNS server isn’t responding error in Windows 10.

The Domain Name System is popularly known as the DNS. It is a directory of the Internet. Human beings access information available online through domain names such as bigstuff.cornell.edu or www.code.org. DNS translates the domain name into IP addresses for browsers to readily load internet resources.

Quickest fixes to ”DNS Server Isn’t Responding” issue in Windows 10

1. Troubleshooting

Connection problems can be resolved by restarting the server. If it fails to yield any results, it looks like a hard reboot may be in store. It is then done simply by pulling out the power plug. After waiting for around 30 seconds until all of the electrical components have completely powered down if you receive the error message, ‘DNS server not responding,’ the only choice is to choose an alternative DNS server.

2. Manually setting a DNS server

Your ISP’s DNS provider may be facing a temporary downtime. So, it is recommended to use another DNS for further web access. The guide to doing so is as follows:

Go to the Control Panel, and click on the option Network and Internet. Select the Network and Sharing Center option and choose Change adapter settings, as shown below. Right-click on the network connection you want to configure; select ‘Properties.’

the dns server isn't responding

Reminder: This option has to be changed separately for the Wi-Fi and the Ethernet connections if you wish to change the DNS server for both. 

the dns server isn't responding

Select “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCIP/IPv4)” in the list shown and click on “Properties.” You need to enter the addresses of the DNS servers you want to use. After selecting the option marked below, with a pair of numbers as shown below, click OK.

To set a custom DNS server for IPv6 connections, select “Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCIP/IPv6)”, click “Properties,” and enter the IPv6 addresses as well. Click “OK” when you’re done.   

the dns server isn't responding

After successfully changing the DNS server, you need to flush the DNS cache to ensure that the windows are using records from your new DNS server and not from the previously cached results. 

3. Winsock Reset

On to the search bar, type cmd to open the command prompt. Click on cmd followed by clicking on Run as Administrator. Click yes on the dialogue box to grant permission. Execute the following commands on the command prompt one after the other by pressing the Enter after each command:

ipconfig/release

This command is executed forcefully so that the client immediately gives up its lease. You may do so by sending the server a DHCP release notification. It will update the server’s status information marking the old client’s IP address as “available.”

the dns server isn't responding

ipconfig/all

It is a command that displays all current IP network configuration values, refreshing Domain Name System (DNS) and Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) settings. Here the ipconfig displays the IP address, the default gateway for all adapters, and the subnet mask.

the dns server isn't responding

ipconfig/flushdns

This helps the system clear the name’s cache to ip entries and reloads them from the connected DNS server.

ipconfig/renew

Here, the command is executed to force an immediate handover of its lease. The individual sends the server a DHCP release notification, which updates the server’s status information and marks the old client’s IP address as “available.” The command ipconfig /renew is then executed to request a new IP address further.

netsh int ip set DNS

A static IP address can be set from the command prompt by running the netsh command at an administrative level prompt.  It must be made completely sure that you substitute the parameters in the command below.

Follow the below-shown commands for the DNS server because administrators typically configure a primary and secondary DNS server. 

The primary DNS server run is as follows:

The secondary DNS server run is as follows:

the dns server isn't responding

When the PC is already configured to use DHCP, you need to configure the adapter to use DNS from DHCP. This is followed by running the command shown below.

After making all IP and DNS changes run ipconfig/all to review the newly made settings.

4. Uninstall and re-install network driver

This is by far the most convenient fixes for the DNS server isn’t responding windows 10 system. Simply uninstalling and re-installing the network driver fixes the issue. To do so, follow the steps as shown below:

Go to ‘’Device Manager’’ as marked below. Click on to open it.             

On opening the Device Manager, scroll down to expand the ‘’Network Adapter’’ as shown.

You need to right-click on your current network connection and uninstall the driver.

Finally, right-click on any other adapter option you want and click on “Scan for hardware changes. “ The driver should re-appear. If it doesn’t, then disconnect your Wi-Fi adapter/cable connection and reconnecting it again.

5. Updating network drivers

Network drivers are basically software that activates the transmission of data over the network. Heading onto the Device Manager and choosing the ‘’Update Driver’’ option from the section of network adapters, you may find the requirement of making necessary updates available. Making the necessary updates may also resolve the issue of the DNS server isn’t responding.

Make sure the power source is plugged in at all times throughout the required updates and installations.

6. Manually setting MAC Address

MAC address, also known as the media access control address, is a unique hardware identification number assigned to the network interface controller (NIC) that uniquely identifies each device on a network.

To fix the DNS server isn’t responding error, you need to note your physical address, aka MAC address. Follow the steps shown below:

7. Finding your MAC address through command prompt

Go to the search bar and type ‘’cmd’’ to find the command prompt listed. Right-click on it to open and choose the option Run as administrator” to launch it as an administrator. After launching it, type “ipconfig /all” along with space and press Enter. You may now find all the required information regarding Windows IP configuration, Ethernet adapter details, as well as wireless LAN adapter information if any.

For wired connection, the MAC address may be available under the Ethernet adapter connection. In wireless connections, the MAC address will be available under the wireless LAN adapter connection. Whichever may be the connection, you may easily drag to copy and paste the address onto the clipboard. The page described may look as shown below.

8. Finding your MAC address using network settings

Go to the ‘’Network and Internet’’ settings and click on ‘’Network and Sharing Center’’. You will now find the active connection, as shown below. Click on ‘’Details’’ for all the details to show up.  

The details will look as follows:

After noting the MAC address, make sure your network connection uses the same value. Go to the control panel and ‘’change adapter settings’’. It can be done so by changing the MAC address as follows.  The connection labeled as Ethernet is the wired connection and the Wi-Fi connection is the wireless connection from the several network connections listed.

Select the one you’re connected to and right-click to choose the option ‘Properties.’ Click on ‘’configure’’ to continue. On the ‘’Advanced Tab’’. On clicking on it, you will encounter a set of 6 pairs of numbers without dashes. Click on OK to confirm it.

9. Clear the DNS Cache

A DNS cache may become polluted or poisoned because of unauthorized IP addresses or domain names inserted into it. Occasionally, a cache may be corrupted because of technical glitches or administrative accidents. However, the DNS cache poisoning is basically associated with viruses and/or the other networks that insert invalid DNS entries. Therefore, clearing the DNS cache clears the invalid entries and records that might hamper the system and cause the DNS server error. To clear the DNS cache, follow the steps explained below to fix the issue of the DNS server isn’t responding:

Launch the command prompt to run the administrator and type the following commands in order: ipconfig /flushdns, ipconfig /registerdns, ipconfig /release, ipconfig /renew.

Hopefully, this issue will be resolved.

10. Disable Windows Update Peer-to-Peer Feature

P2P, also known as peer-to-peer networks, is the most egalitarian network in the computer world. The primary goal is to share all kinds of computing resources such as processing power, network bandwidth, or disk storage space. Most importantly, it is used in sharing files on the internet. The  P2P feature is one of the newest addition in Windows 10 used to save download width. 

Here, this update’s installation may be advantageous for spreading to all the local networks or computers. However, this feature interferes with the DNS server. Hence disabling this update may restore your server. To fix the DNS server isn’t responding, go to settings and select “Update and Security’’. Going to the ‘’Advanced Options’’, select “Delivery Optimization’’. On opening the window, click on the Off option under “Allow downloads from other PCs’’. Hopefully, this will fix the issue of the DNS server isn’t responding on windows 10.

11. Disabling Secondary Connections

Having more than one network connection running on the same computer or PC can cause the DNS server’s problem not to respond in windows 10. It can be fixed by closing all other secondary connections on that machine. This may be done as follows:

Go to the settings and click on the option of ‘’Network and Internet’’. Here, click on the option that is your connection type. Click on the ‘’change adapter settings’’.

12. Disabling Antivirus 

The installed antivirus software may interfere with the DNS server causing it not to respond appropriately. Disabling it may solve the problem of the DNS server isn’t responding in Windows 10. This can be done by first going to the search panel and typing the appropriate antivirus software name as used by them secondly. Selecting the option on uninstall and wait for complete uninstallation before finding the solution. However, one might need to consider another antivirus program immediately to protect the system.

13. Restart Modem and Router

If the modem or router doesn’t work properly, the DNS server has the possibility to stop responding. Therefore, you need to restart your modem and router to solve the problem, which can be done by pressing the power button of your modem or router to power off. Please wait for a while before pressing the power button to start it again.

Concluding

With the provided solutions, one or more of the fixes may work towards ‘the DNS server isn’t responding’ in windows 10. You must seek professional help to know the root cause of the problem if you have not figured out the problem. If individuals have absolutely no knowledge regarding the technicalities, I hope this article provides an insight into the step-by-step solutions or fixes to the issue.                                                               

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