Experiencing errors while browsing the internet is not uncommon for the average PC user. Thankfully, the easy access to information today makes it much simpler to seek a solution.
In this guide, we’ll talk about the “Server DNS address could not be found” error that Chrome users experience when accessing specific websites.
Have you experienced this problem recently? Worry not. It’s relatively easy to solve.
Take a look at the methods in the sections below to learn more.
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The Problem Explained
Often, users encounter the “DNS Address could not be found” error when their DNS cache returns outdated IP addresses and needs a refresh, the DNS server is down and not accessible, or their router doesn’t work as intended.
The user may also see this error due to a misconfiguration on the website they’re trying to enter or when their internet service provider experiences an outage or maintenance.
The message provided with this error is “example.com’s server DNS address could not be found. Try running Windows Network Diagnostics. DNS_PROBE_FINISHED_NXDOMAIN,” as shown in the image below.
Usually, the best way to check if this error is on your end or “tied” to one specific website is by opening multiple in your browser. If most websites load but one doesn’t, the problem is likely not on your end.
But, if you cannot open most of the sites you use daily, such as YouTube, Facebook, or even Google’s main page, the problem could be on your end, and it is then worth giving the following methods a try.
Fix 1: Restart Your Router
For some users, a simple router restart solves many network-related issues. That is the simplest and quickest fix, and we recommend trying it before the others. If it solves your problem, you’ll save time and won’t have to go through all the steps to make different changes on your computer.
Here’s how to restart your router:
- Find the power button or switch usually located on the device’s backside. Use it to power off the router.
- Wait for about five minutes.
- Power the device back on and wait until all the lights return to normal.
Once your connection is restored, which could take a minute or two, try opening one of the websites you previously couldn’t due to the DNS error. For some users, this fixes the problem immediately.
If you cannot open the website still, move on to the second method listed below.
Fix 2: Flush Your DNS Resolver Cache
Your DNS Resolver Cache is like a phonebook with different numbers associated with people you’ve met, or in this case, IP addresses of websites you’ve visited. Whenever you visit a website, your computer stores its “contact information” so that it doesn’t have to request it from the DNS server the next time you visit.
The point of this process is to make everything much faster when opening websites, but here’s the catch.
One of the reasons you may be experiencing the “Server DNS address could not be found” error is that the website changed/updated its “contact information,” but your computer hasn’t, as it still uses the same DNS cache from before. It’s like calling old and unused phone numbers written in your outdated phonebook.
Luckily, there’s an easy fix for this. It includes a simple DNS Resolver Cache flush – a process that rids of all outdated contact information for various websites you’ve visited so that your computer can replace them with new, valid ones.
Follow the steps below to flush your DNS Resolver Cache:
- Simultaneously press the Windows + S buttons on your keyboard to open the Windows Search Box. Within it, type in Command Prompt, right-click the first result, and choose Run as Administrator, as shown in the image below. That will launch an elevated Command Prompt panel.
- Within the Command Prompt window that just opened, type in and execute (by pressing enter after typing each one of them) the following commands, one by one:
- netsh int ip reset
- netsh winsock reset
- ipconfig /release
- ipconfig /renew
- ipconfig /flushdns
- Close the Command Prompt window and open one of the websites you previously couldn’t load due to the DNS error.
The problem should now no longer be present. This method solved the issue immediately for many users, and hopefully, it’ll work for you too.
If it doesn’t, there are still more things to try. Take a look at the next section for more information.
Fix 3: Use Google’s Public DNS
There are many benefits of using Google’s Public DNS, both performance and security-wise.
Also, opting for Google’s DNS settings often minimizes or resolves any DNS-related issues, such as the one you’re trying to solve now.
Switching over to Google’s DNS is very easy, and you can do it by following the steps below:
- Click the search icon on Windows located in the bottom-left corner of your taskbar. You can also use the Windows + S buttons on your keyboard as a shortcut to open it.
- In the search box, type in Settings and then press Enter.
- Click Network & Internet as shown in the image below.
- Under the Advanced Network Settings category, click on Change Adapter Options.
- From the list of network connections, right-click the one you’re using, then choose Properties.
- Select Internet Protocol Version 4 and then click Properties in the bottom-right corner, as shown in the image below.
- Now, in the IPV4 settings panel, select the “Use the following DNS server addresses” option and then type in the values as shown in the image below.
Note: If you cannot see the image, the values are as follows:
- Preferred DNS Server: 8*8*8*8
- Alternate DNS Server: 8*8*4*4
Once you type them in, press the OK button at the bottom to save the changes.
You should now be able to load the websites you previously couldn’t. For many users, this method fixed the problem permanently.
Fix 4: Contact Your Internet Service Provider
Another way to get more information about the problem is to contact your internet service provider. Explain your issue and more about the error you see when loading a website.
They can monitor your connection and find out if there are any problems on your end or let you know if the issue is on their end.
That’s all there is to know about the “Server DNS Address Could Not Be Found” error users encounter while trying to load websites using the Chrome browser.
Most of the time, you can fix it by applying the methods listed in this guide, but in some situations, there’s not much to do as the problem is on the website’s end.