What Is DNS Server Failure?


Angela Bailey

In today’s digital age, the smooth functioning of the internet is essential for businesses and individuals alike. One crucial component that ensures the proper functioning of the internet is the Domain Name System (DNS).

The DNS acts as a phone book for the internet, translating human-readable domain names into machine-readable IP addresses. However, just like any other technology, DNS servers can sometimes fail, causing disruptions in internet connectivity.

What is a DNS Server?

Before delving into DNS server failure, it’s important to understand what a DNS server is and how it works. A DNS server is a computer server that contains a database of public IP addresses and their associated hostnames. When you type a website address into your browser, your computer sends a request to a DNS server to resolve the domain name into an IP address.

Once the IP address is obtained, your computer can establish a connection with the webserver hosting the requested website. This entire process happens behind-the-scenes in milliseconds, allowing us to effortlessly browse the web.

Common Causes of DNS Server Failure

DNS server failure can occur due to various reasons. Let’s explore some of the most common causes:

  • Network Connectivity Issues: If there are issues with your internet connection or local network setup, your device may not be able to reach the DNS server.
  • DNS Misconfiguration: Incorrect configuration of DNS settings on either the client-side or server-side can lead to failures in resolving domain names.
  • DNS Server Overload: High traffic volumes or distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks can overwhelm DNS servers and cause them to fail.
  • Hardware or Software Failure: Like any other server, DNS servers can experience hardware failures or software glitches that result in service disruptions.

Signs of DNS Server Failure

Identifying a DNS server failure can help you troubleshoot the issue more effectively. Here are some common signs:

  • Website Unavailability: If you are unable to access any website, it may indicate a DNS server failure.
  • Slow Website Loading Times: A failing DNS server may take longer to resolve domain names, resulting in slow website loading times.
  • Error Messages: Your browser may display error messages like “DNS Server Not Found” or “Server IP Address Could Not Be Found” when encountering DNS issues.

Troubleshooting DNS Server Failure

If you suspect a DNS server failure, there are several steps you can take to troubleshoot the issue:

  1. Check your Internet Connection: Ensure that your internet connection is stable and properly configured. If necessary, restart your router or modem.
  2. Use Alternative DNS Servers: Try changing your device’s DNS settings to use public DNS servers like Google (8.8.8) or Cloudflare (1.1.1).
  3. Clear DNS Cache: Your device and browser cache DNS information to speed up future requests.

    Clearing the cache can help resolve any outdated or incorrect records.

  4. Contact Your Internet Service Provider (ISP): If the issue persists, reach out to your ISP for assistance. They can check if there are any known issues with their DNS servers.


In conclusion, DNS server failure can occur due to various reasons, including network connectivity issues, misconfigurations, server overload, or hardware/software failures. Recognizing the signs of DNS server failure and following the appropriate troubleshooting steps can help restore your internet connectivity swiftly.

Remember to stay up-to-date with the latest DNS best practices and consider implementing redundant DNS configurations to minimize the impact of any potential failures. By being aware of DNS server failure and knowing how to address it, you can ensure a seamless browsing experience on the internet.

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