Cloudflare recently launched what is reported to be the fastest public DNS directory, ‘188.8.131.52’. The Flaunt team discusses what this means in the latest episode of Industry Spotlight…
See below for the full video transcription.
Jamie: So first thing we’re gonna talk about today is Cloudflare’s new DNS service. It’s called 184.108.40.206. So they managed to bag a pretty prestigious IP address for this. Four ones… That’s the hand signal.
Lee: Oh, is it?
Lee: Sorry. Sorry, Cloudflare.
Jamie: So that’s pretty cool. They’ve already had tons of problems with that IP address because people like to just squat on these things for, like, routers and stuff, put their admin page on 220.127.116.11. And, like, dodgy hotels with, like, you know, when you log in, you have to go into the portal when you go on their Wi-Fi. People like that like to set these up on 18.104.22.168 because it’s obviously memorable.
So Cloudflare have picked the IP which is extremely popular. And it’s easy to remember, but they’ve already come into problems where people setting the DNS on their phone to this are having struggles when they get on these certain access points that have used 22.214.171.124 for something else.
So this is Cloudflare’s first consumer offering. So it’s a pretty big deal, really, because really, if you’re not a dev or you don’t build website architectures or back ends, you really probably wouldn’t have heard of Cloudflare before. But now it’s, sort of, like a mainstream thing that they’re launching. And not many people really are into changing their DNS. It’s quite an alien thing, isn’t it, outside the tech world?
But Google have got one of these. I believe theirs is 126.96.36.199. Or is it 188.8.131.52? I don’t know. It’s one of the memorable ones. There’s a few going about now. Cloudflare reckon that theirs is the fastest. So globally, they reckon that if you set your DNS to that, then you’ll be able to get results off the DNS servers quicker than everybody else.
So, yeah, just a bit of background, I guess, for the non-techies. DNS basically just resolves your domain name. So essentially, every domain name resolves to an IP address. But there’s a few providers that will help you resolve those. So usually, when you get a router through your ISP, it’ll just be set to their DNS, which is usually a crap provider which is slow.
So people like Google and now Cloudflare have taken it upon themselves to offer their own service, which is great for countries that have, like, the Great Firewall situation or they’ve got government-imposed blocks on websites, which obviously are domain name-based. As soon as you start using one of these decentralized DNS providers, you can get around stuff like that which is obviously good.
Lee: Do you wanna talk about…
Jamie: April 1st, yes. Crazy, crazy times. Why would you do it on April 1st?
Lee: Or was it a PR genius move?
Jamie: A bit of both, wasn’t it? So they said 184.108.40.206, 4/1 or 1/4 is the date. That’s the reason why they wanted to do it on April 1st. But yeah, when it came out, I didn’t think it was real.
Lee: Turns out it is.
Jamie: It is. Gmail was April 1st, too, so that was real. Yeah. So there’s a few privacy things about it, but essentially it’s another DNS service, which is all good. The more, the merrier. Give people choice. It’s free. Stick it in your router config or your computer config or your phone config and try it out. Supposedly it’s really fast. Personally, I don’t think it’s much different from where we are in Leeds, but I don’t know.
So the only other reason we’d use it is privacy, I guess. Yeah, so they’ve sworn not to pass your surfing history to anyone else, and they’ve got auditors in from third parties to basically verify what they’re saying, which is more than ISPs do. So if you’re that way inclined, then this is one of the reasons to use their offering.