How To Fix DNS Server Is Not Responding Error the Easy Way

A DNS or Domain Name System is a directory of names that matches the IP address of computers. Each device connected to the internet has its own unique IP address such as 192.168.1.1. Memorizing this IP address can be difficult so instead of typing in numbers on the browser we can type the hostname such as www.example.com. This directory is stored in several servers located around the world and is accessed by your computer. Sometimes though there can be issues when trying to access this DNS server which we will tackle today. In this latest installment of our troubleshooting series we will tackle the DNS server is not responding error.

Here’s what to do when experiencing DNS Server issues on your computer

Before performing any of the recommended troubleshooting steps listed below it’s best to restart your computer first. This action refreshes the operating system and remove any corrupt temporary data that could be causing the problem.

There are several factors that can cause this particular problem ranging from an interference from the antivirus software to a router issue. Listed below are the recommended troubleshooting steps you need to do to fix this problem.

Restart the router

The first thing you will need to do in this case is to restart the router. Unplug it from the power outlet then wait for a minute before plugging it back in. This will refresh the router software and hopefully fix the server not responding error.


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Try using a different DNS server

There’s a possibility that the DNS server that your computer is using has a problem. To check if this is the culprit, you should try using Google’s Public DNS which is a free alternative Domain Name System (DNS) service offered to Internet users around the world.

  • Click on the Start button
  • Click on Settings
  • Go to Network & Internet
  • Click on Network and Sharing Center
  • Go to Change Adapter Settings.
  • You’ll see some network icons here. Select the network you’re currently connected to and right click on it. Select Properties.
  • Click on IPv4 and select Properties.
  • Click the radio button next to “Use the following DNS server addresses:”
  • Enter 8.8.8.8 for prefered DNS server
  • Enter 8.8.4.4 for alternate DNS server
  • Click on OK and Close.

Try checking if the not responding error still occurs.

Disable IPv6

IPv6 is the latest version of the Internet Protocol and was developed to address the possible exhaustion of IP addresses when using the IPv4 protocol. Disabling this feature might help to fix the “DNS server is not responding” error.

  • Click on the Start button
  • Click on Settings
  • Go to Network & Internet
  • Click on Network and Sharing Center
  • Go to Change Adapter Settings.
  • Right click on the network adapter you are looking to change and then select Properties.
  • Uncheck the box for Internet Protocol Version (TCP/IPv6) and then click OK.

Try to check if the stops responding problem still occurs.

Use the network troubleshooter tool

windows 10 has a tool, called the Network Troubleshooter,  that can be used to fix common network related problems. Try using this to fix this issue.

  • Open the Settings app. You can do that using the Windows Key + I shortcut. Now navigate to the Update & Security section.
  • Select Troubleshoot from the left pane. In the right pane, select Internet Connections and now click Run the troubleshooter button.
  • Follow the instructions to complete the troubleshooter.

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.

Run the network commands

The following network commands will refresh the IP configuration of your computer

  • Type Command Prompt on the search bar
  • Right click on the command prompt app that appears then click on Run as Administrator.
  • At the command prompt, run the following commands in the listed order.
  • Type netsh winsock reset and select Enter.
  • Type netsh int ip reset and select Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /release and select Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /renew and select Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /flushdns and select Enter.
  • Close the command prompt window

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.

Turn off the antivirus

There’s a possibility that the problem is caused by the antivirus software that you are using. To eliminate this possibility you will need to disable the antivirus software.

If you are using Windows Security

  • Select Start Settings  > Update & Security  – Windows SecurityVirus & threat protection > Manage settings
  • Switch Real-time protection to Off.

If you are using Avast

  • Search for the Avast icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
  • Click on Avast shields control.
  • Locate the options to disable the program – the options are to disable it for 10 minutes, an hour, until the computer is restarted or permanently (until you yourself turn it back on). Select whatever option suits you best and use it to disable the program.

If you are using AVG

  • Search for the AVG icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
  • Click on Temporarily disable AVG protection.
  • Choose how long you want AVG to be turned off and whether you want AVG to disable its Firewall too.
  • Click on OK to disable the antivirus program.

If you are using McAfee

  • Search for the McAfee Antivirus icon in your computer’s system tray and right-click on it.
  • Click on Exit.
  • You should see a dialog box warning you that McAfee‘s protection will be turned off. Click on YES in this dialog box to disable the antivirus program

If the problem does not occur then you should check your antivirus settings or try using a different antivirus software instead.

Turn off the firewall

Sometimes the firewall can prevent your computer from connecting to the internet. To check if this is what’s causing the problem you should turn off the firewall.

  • In the search box on the taskbar, type Command Prompt.  The Command Prompt button will appear. To the right of it, select Run as Administrator > Yes.
  • At the command prompt, type netsh advfirewall set allprofiles state off, and then select Enter.
  • Open your web browser, and visit a website you trust to see if you can connect to it.
  • To turn on all firewalls you might have installed, at the command prompt, type netsh advfirewall set allprofiles state on, and then select Enter.

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.

Rollback your network adapter drivers

If the problem occurred after an update then you should try using the older network adapter driver version.

  • Right click on the Start button
  • Click on Device Manager
  • Expand the Network adapters branch.
  • Right-click the adapter with the problem and select  Properties.
  • In Properties, select the Driver tab, select Roll Back Driver, and then follow the steps.
  • Restart the computer.

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.

Update your network adapter drivers

This problem can be caused by corrupt or outdated network adapter drivers. To fix this you will need to update these drivers.

  • Right click on the Start button
  • Click on Device Manager
  • Expand the Network adapters branch.
  • Right-click the adapter with the problem and select the Update driver option.
  • Click the Search automatically for update driver software option.
  • Continue with the on-screen directions (if applicable).
  • Once you complete the steps, if an update is available, it’ll download and install it on your computer.
  • Restart your computer.

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.

Use network reset

In case the above steps fails to fix the problem then you should consider doing a network reset.

  • Select the Start  button, then select Settings  > Network & Internet  > Status > Network reset.
  • On the Network reset screen, select Reset now > Yes to confirm.
  • Wait for your PC to restart.

Check if the DNS server is not responding error still occurs.