Thursday, November 3, 2011

OpenDNS for the home

I'd like to take a minute and discuss the free OpenDNS service available for home users.

Top 5 reasons to use OpenDNS at home:

  1. Superior DNS experience. They say that their DNS service is superior to the service your Internet Service Provider (ISP, i.e. Time Warner or Comcast) provide to your home.  They go on to say that their service is not only faster than your ISP; but also more reliable and able to withstand some outages (like those that recently plagued many famous websites)
    1. What's DNS? Well, when you go to, it's the service that translates this and tells your computer where to go... in short, if it does not work, that ebay item you are watching belongs to someone else.
  2. Anti-fraud and anti-phishing.  OpenDNS keeps a list of many sites that can cause you to accidentally give up your credit card or other personal information.  This means that once you turn on the service, you are automatically protected from these sites.
  3. It's geeky and fun.  Ok, well my real number three URL correction.  Ever put in google.cmo and had to see that damn ISP page asking you "did you mean".. geesh, so annoying.  OpenDNS attempts to interpret what you mean when you make these types of blunders and automatically correct your browsing experience.  Thus, google.cmo changes to like magic before your eyes!
  4. It's free and easy to set up.  Need I say more?  You can get all of the above features and many many more, for free for home use.  If you are a business, there are some charges associated to use their service.
  5. Parental Controls.  Are you a parent?  Do you want to filter what types of sites your household can go to (i.e. no Porn)?  While I think filtering out may not be your best method, it is certainly a nice feature for parental units.  For Free, again free, you can turn on filtering for categories of sites that you wish to block easily and quickly to prevent access to certain groups of sites.  Oh yea, you can also run a report on internet access (in case you are the open and honest family type and would like to discuss where your family browses to).
So, with that said will you take the plunge?  It's actually incredibly easy to set up and I'd rate it a 'moderate' on the techie scale.

What do you need to get started?:
  • Computer at home (preferably a desktop can stay on all the time) to update your info to OpenDNS on a regular basis.
  • Ideally, a router.  Most home users have a wireless router nowadays so this should be no problem.

Hop on over to OpenDNS to see for yourself: 

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