KEN (or anyone) - OpenDNS questions!!

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KEN (or anyone) - OpenDNS questions!!
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Jim Hillier
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March 23, 2009 - 5:57 pm
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Hey Ken (and all) - I'm thinking of changing to OpenDNS. How would you rate it's usefulness? Are there any security implications? Any pitfalls, things to know? What are the advantages? Do you recommend OpenDNS?

JIM

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Chad Johnson
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March 24, 2009 - 6:53 am
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I know I'm not Ken (Hope you don't mind)...

I used Open DNS for several years. I loved it, it was fast, responsive, and even corrected some of my fat fingered typing. I quit using it when I moved and got FIOS and Verizon gave me a router I couldn't hack easily. I just accepted the defaults and moved on (yes, how un-geek like). I've been meaning to remedy that situation though and go back to using Open DNS.

I find it to be very useful and their DNS servers tend to be more accurate than my ISPs (who caches for years and only occasionally updates it seems).

So far as Security, you are trusting Open DNS with your browsing habits (rather than your ISP). What they do with this data is anyone's guess but I trust Open DNS (who answers to many many users) more than I trust my ISP (who seems to answer to no one).

~shrug~ Best thing I can say is to try it. I can't think of any security holes (in fact, it may be more secure than using your ISP's DNS) that would stop me from going back to it. For me, right now, it's just laziness.

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Jim Hillier
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March 24, 2009 - 4:51 pm
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Thanks Zigmeister - Of course I don't mind....will always listen to what you have to say mate!! If you recommend OpenDNS, that's good enough for me.

thanks again.....JIM

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Ken Harthun
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March 25, 2009 - 1:22 pm
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Highly recommended--it's all I use. OpenDNS runs hardened servers that aren't subject to some of the recently-discovered vulnerabilities (in particular, the DNS rebinding attack that I wrote about in [url=http://itknowledgeexchange.techtarget.com/security-corner/how-to-prevent-dns-rebinding-attacks/:3q6snvkv]this article[/url:3q6snvkv] and [url=http://searchsecurity.techtarget.com/tip/0,289483,sid14_gci1320568,00.html:3q6snvkv]this article[/url:3q6snvkv]).

The folks over at Lifehacker like it too, as evidenced by [url=http://www.lifehacker.com.au/tips/2008/07/29/opendns_offers_dns_vulnerability_protection-2.html:3q6snvkv]this article[/url:3q6snvkv].

Furthermore, they are [url=http://blog.opendns.com/2009/02/09/stats-are-back-and-conficker/:3q6snvkv]blocking the Conficker worm[/url:3q6snvkv] from phoning home and you can even sign up for a free control panel that lets you apply various levels of content filtering to your own network.

Give 'er a go, Mate. You'll like it.

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Jim Hillier
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March 25, 2009 - 4:13 pm
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Hey Ken - Thanks for the reply mate (and links to the articles). I had an inkling OpenDNS was good news....nice to have it confirmed by folk who know what they are talking about though.

thanks again guys,
JIM.

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Big Geek Daddy
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March 25, 2009 - 10:56 pm
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I've been using OpenDNS for several years and until I stumble upon a post or Blog article about it I forget that it's even there. It's the best silent sentry that doesn't require any maintenance on your part. Just set it up and go!

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Jim Hillier
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March 26, 2009 - 2:03 am
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Hey BGD - Thanks for that........sounds like it's unanimous then...OpenDNS is definitely the go!!

cheers....JIM

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Nightowl78
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March 26, 2009 - 9:05 pm
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Hi Ken:

Thanks for the links to the articles on OpenDNS, they were very useful in helping me make up my mind to use this very good free program.

I went to the web site, viewed the tutorial and I was off and running. Very easy to install and configure. I've got 3 desktops and a laptop running from a Linksys wireless router and it worked flawlessly.

Thanks to Jim for requesting the information on it.

Maybe this will stop my random lost of internet connection from time to time that my ISP seems to know nothing about.........right!

Thanks again

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Jim Hillier
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March 27, 2009 - 5:57 pm
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So, thought I'd better post back and let you know....thanks to all your good advice I now have OpenDNS up and running.....good one!!!

thanks to all......much appreciated,
JIM

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Ken Harthun
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March 27, 2009 - 8:38 pm
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Hi Ken:

Thanks for the links to the articles on OpenDNS, they were very useful in helping me make up my mind to use this very good free program.
[/quote:9mfah4wf]

You're welcome! It's what we're here for. Glad to help.

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Ken Harthun
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March 27, 2009 - 8:54 pm
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So, thought I'd better post back and let you know....thanks to all your good advice I now have OpenDNS up and running.....good one!!!

thanks to all......much appreciated,
JIM[/quote:21clekw3]

Fantastic! Put some shrimp on the barbie and pour me a tall Fosters (is that the right one for Oz?) I'll be right down to celebrate, er maybe next summer (winter for me)

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Jim Hillier
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March 27, 2009 - 9:57 pm
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Yep Big Feller, you got it right...Fosters would do nicely. Although that brand is one of the 'top drops' in the Southern state (Victoria)...here in Queensland (up North) we prefer our very own 'Fourex' (or just plain 'XXXX'). There is a joke which does the rounds; Q: Why do Queenslanders call it Fourex ('XXXX')....A: Coz they can't spell beer.

BTW: We would never 'put some shrimp' on the barbie....we don't have shrimp here, only prawns....nice big Kingies. We would definitely 'put some prawns' on the barbie though......good tucker!!!

Ah yes; sunshine, prawns and a nice cold beer (or two)...doesn't get much better than that!! Hope you can make it

cheers mate.....JIM

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Jim Hillier
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March 30, 2009 - 4:50 pm
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Hi Guys - I'm afraid I am disappointed with OpenDNS. It certainly hasn't made things any quicker for me, in fact I reckon it has marginally slowed things down. In an effort to understand why that may be, I went back to the official site and had a mother's look around. I came across a map displaying the locations of their 'data centers'...all are based in the USA except for one in London...there are currently none in nor close to Oz. I reckon that my be the reason....what do you think??

cheers......JIM

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David Hartsock
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March 30, 2009 - 8:48 pm
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Jim, Unfortunately I believe you are correct. This is one of the 'downfalls' of the internet. With a worldwide audience, a service like this is somewhat location dependent (for best results).

If you can't deal with the added lag a good alternative (until a closer server is added) might be to use OpenDNS as your secondary DNS server. This would give you redundancy should your ISP experience issues. Though you have to weigh the benefits of OpenDNS vs. the speed (for those not in the US or Western Europe). If you have kids, or users who aren't internet savy it still may be a good choice.

Now the good news...

OpenDNS has only been around since mid 2006. Their growth has been astounding in this short period of time. Hopefully they will add more server locations in the near future to better handle other countries.

Jim, how much latency were you experiencing (compared to your ISP's DNS)?

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Jim Hillier
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March 31, 2009 - 12:50 am
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Hey Dave - Thanks for the reply and info...as I suspected!!! The latency is not considerable but it is noticeable. Streaming media seems to be the worst affected but I am also experiencing a general slowing down; pages a bit slower to load (I can live with), occasional dropping of connection (intermittent but a PITA). I like your suggestion of placing OpenDNS second in the pecking order, seems like a sensible approach...at least, until their network is widened to include us 3rd World countries!!

thanks for the advice mate,
JIM.

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