How to: Safari running a little slow? Try using OpenDNS

September 18, 2009

With its Nitro JavaScript and WebKit browser engines, Apple’s Safari is perhaps the fastest browser available from any vendor today. That doesn’t mean, however, that things don’t go wrong. Here’s another take on making Safari live up to its speedy pedigree.

When it comes to Safari slowdowns, the first three things you should try are 1.) clearing cookies, 2.) emptying the cache and 3.) clearing browser history. The nuclear option here is to Reset Safari, which gets rid of the preceding and a whole lot more.

As indicated by the arrow, even if you choose to induce vomiting in Safari, I for one choose not to lose all of the login and password information stored in the browser. Yes, I do have that information backed elsewhere and it’s also stored in Keychain. Nevertheless, it’s still a major pain in the tush to input all of that information manually (yes, I have used 1Password, but don’t care for password managers).

If you’ve tried all of that and still aren’t feeling the love, News.com (au revoir MacFixIt) reminded me of a method that just might help “” using a third-party DNS, specifically OpenDNS. Depending on the particulars of your situation, this free service can greatly improved DNS look up response time and thereby make browsing one heckuva lot faster.

How to do it

1. Go to System Preferences -> Network -> click “Advanced”

2. Click the “DNS” tab and then the ” + ”

3. Paste or type in 208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220.

4. The first webpage you try to load will take you to the OpenDNS site, where you’ll need to register for an account, which is free and doesn’t require a credit card.

Again, your mileage will likely vary, but adding OpenDNS DNS Servers could speed up domain IP look ups, which just might be what you need to browse faster.

Have any nifty Safari or OS X tips or tricks you’d like to share? Leave a note and a link in the comments below or drop me a line: ron “at” blorge dot com.

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3 Responses to “How to: Safari running a little slow? Try using OpenDNS”

  1. Tony:

    This is terrible advice. I tried it, and I couldn’t access my bookmarks. If I clicked one, I’d be taken DIRECTLY to OpenDNS’ web portal page, and it wouldn’t let me access my own bookmarks. I’d just get shunted back to their page!

    I switched to Google to get away from Yahoo/Microsoft ad-based web-portals, and I have no desire to go back!

  2. OpenDNS Profile:

    @Tony: Maybe you had blocked these sites in your set-up. Some sites are blocked by OpenDNS depending on the level of security you set.

  3. lkern:

    OpenDNS is incredible. I used the free version for my school, but decided the enterprise version was too good to pass up. If you are not familiar with OpenDNS for home, business and school, you might want to read up on it. Like NOW.

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