How to Improve DNS Resolution Time Through Network Monitoring

The Importance of DNS Resolution

How to speed up DNS resolution time
Test your DNS resolution time with our Network Trace Test.

Domain Name System (DNS) servers are responsible for the complex interconnections within the Internet. The DNS servers are responsible for the interface between machines and humans because they convert human-designated domain names  into into their corresponding machine IP addresses (ex. one of IP address’s is Most people don’t connect to servers via these  IP addresses, therefore the DNS process is extremely valuable.

There are 4.7 billion possible addresses available in IPv4. Because the number of IP addresses is fast running out, IPv6 was introduced. The IPv6 protocol dramatically multiplies the number of IP addresses available in the ecosystem. A large number of IP addresses translate into an even larger number of interconnections and DNS processes between clients and servers. Distributed DNS name servers, thus, become necessary to manage these processes. They are the first connections made by your web server, once a user types in your website URL.

Why is DNS Resolution Time Important for your Website?

DNS resolution time affects the time it takes for host server to receive and process a request for a webpage, also known as latency. If the DNS server information is available in your browser cache, or if the DNS name server is available at a location close to you, then the process is relatively simple.

However, things get complicated when the DNS name server is located halfway around the world, or if the DNS name server cache has expired. Specifically, Time-to-Live (TTL) refers to the period of time in which a DNS name is cached before it expires on your computer. TTL can vary from days to weeks to years.

Moreover,  increases in latency can have major impacts on the user experience of a website. When DNS servers are geographically located far from the host server, the requesting computer has to perform multiple network hops to reach the DNS server. Each hop translates into a network iteration to reach the address, thereby increasing access times for each DNS name server. Further, factors such as queuing delays can complicate access to the Domain Name System servers.

Another factor that can impact DNS resolution time is the quality of your web hosting. For example, if you’re hosting a WordPress site and your host’s “wait” time is substantial (greater than a second or so), this could really be slowing down your website. This is a good reason why find the best web hosting for WordPress and other platforms is absolutely critical to the speed of a website, and something that you should really spend time optimizing (you can find out more here if you’re interested).

Improving DNS Resolution Time by Monitoring

You can improve DNS resolution time by reducing the number of hops, or network iterations, it takes to reach your DNS name server. This approach requires significant investments in infrastructure and time. The other, simpler approach can be implemented through DNS monitoring.

Monitoring your DNS name server provides accurate availability and performance information of your DNS provider. Testing your DNS via a local browser will miss DNS issues because your local browser has cached the DNS.

As an example, consider the DNS Traceroute Test available from Dotcom-Monitor. This free tool helps you run a URL through the DNS process from multiple worldwide monitoring locations. The solution uses a non-cache method to propagate DNS queries all the way through to root name servers with each monitoring instance. Thus, you can measure DNS response times for first-time users (with non-cached results), to get an accurate picture of your DNS resolution time.

{ photo credit: purplemattfish – cc }

Latest Web Performance Articles​

Top 15 Infrastructure Monitoring Tools

Infrastructure monitoring tools ensure systems’ optimal performance and availability, enabling the identification and resolution of potential issues before they become complex. This article delves into

Top 20 Server Monitoring Tools of 2023

A server monitoring tool is software that monitors the operation and general health of servers and other components of IT infrastructure. These tools continuously track

Top 25 Server Monitoring Tools

In this article we give our expert picks of the top 25 server monitoring tools to help monitor your website’s uptime and give your users the best experience, starting with our own solution at Dotcom-Monitor. Learn why server monitoring is an essential part of any monitoring strategy.

Top 20 Synthetic Monitoring Tools

Synthetic monitoring allows teams to monitor and measure website and web application performance around the clock from every conceivable vantage point, and to receive alerts before issues begin to impact real users. Here are our top picks for synthetic monitoring tools, leading with our own at Dotcom-Monitor.

Start Dotcom-Monitor for free today​

No Credit Card Required