After a recommendation from a friend, I finally decided to take the plunge and try out OpenDNS. Although Virgin Media’s DNS servers are fairly speedy, they occasionally crash and besides, OpenDNS is (apparently) reputed for its security and speed.
Setup was a breeze; a mere matter of reconfiguring static DNS servers. The account offered numerous, though basic, options, including address typo correction, filtering, stats and shortcuts; nothing a bit of Firefox tweaking couldn’t do, though very impressive for a free service. I also didn’t notice a speed increase although OpenDNS is apparently marginally faster.
Then I hit upon an annoyance: typing in search terms into the address bar normally returns Google results or the first Google result for them, so I was shocked when I typed in ‘Google Reader’ and was redirected to an OpenDNS search! Apparently this can be turned off in settings but after following instructions I was still sitting in front of an OpenDNS logo.
My ‘plunge’ lasted in total half a day. OpenDNS is a great service and I would definitely recommend giving it a go, but personally, the convenience of Virgin Media’s default keywords and Google search was just too much to leave behind in exchange for a negligible speed boost. However, I will definitely be returning to 18.104.22.168 and 22.214.171.124 when Virgin Media next accidentally pull the power on their DNS servers…