DNS Service vs VPN Service

DNS Service vs VPN Service

This article deals with the two different types of service, their relative advantages and disadvantages and also covers some practical use for them, has a summary of online media available and some sample costs and providers of DNS and VPN Services.

What is a DNS service? Firstly, a DNS (Domain Name Server) is the server that literally “serves you the website you requested when you type it in”. Your ISP used its own DNS so you are bound by its rules. for example, in the uk when we go to www.bbc.co.uk we see the site, there are no adverts and we see the UK version. Similarly if we try to go to www.piratebay.se we are confirmed it is blocked.

A more popular example is Netflix. If I go to Netflix.com using my ISP I get the UK version with all of its content.

A DNS service allows you to use a DNS server owned by someone other than your IISP. In addition, the DNS are normally pre configured to allow you to access popular streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Instant Video, Pandora, HBO Go, ABC, CBS, BBC iPlayer, SkyGo, ITV Player, 4OD etc etc.

So, just like a VPN then? Not quite. A DNS is set up on your router but is a one time deal, only the sites pre configured by the DNS provider are affected. In addition, as you are not hiding behind a VPN, your speeds are unaffected. That is right, your speed will be exactly as your ISP should normally provide. That’s a huge advantage for those watching HD content especially.

So what is a VPN Service?

A Virtual Private Network is a way of tunnel your traffic via a private network before your requests are made. Not only does a VPN hide your location (similar to the DNS) but it also encrypts your data. This is the main distinguishing feature. DNS services do not engage in privacy safe guarding. VPN services are in the business of 1) allowing you to choose your location before you access websites but 2) protecting your online browsing activity by encrypting your data traffic.

Unlike a DNS service, VPN isn’t a one time setup. if you want a server based in the USA you need to choose one manually. if you want a server based in Egypt or the UAE you need to choose one manually.

You would use a VPN if you wanted to hide your geographical location, browse anonymously, bypass government censorship, bypass ISP throttling techniques and website restrictions or simply just pain old hide.

With the encryption and distance between you and your chosen server it’s inevitable that there will be speed loss, unlike with a VPN. But it depends on its use as to the severity of the loss.

By way of example. I have a 60mb connection in the UK. I used an 8 year old laptop with g wireless Internet. I connected to an Italian server using a ddwrt router. I was behind 256 bit encryption provided by the VPN provider (Astrill) AND was using Tor. I got 8mb. I was only browsing for text so no streaming or pictures just some research. On the flip side some servers I got only 2mb. So it depends on your usage AND the server. I can stream USA Netflix in HD without issue using even west coast servers (although I always choose east coast).

Similarly, I have started more and more to use a VPN for privacy especially on my phone. If I’m doing that I will just choose a UK server. It’s close, I get near full speed,and frankly for what net use your phone needs I don’t even notice drops in speed.

Below is a table showing the advantages and disadvantages of a DNS service vs a VPN service

DNS Service vs VPN Service

Type of ServiceUsageProsConsSample Providers & Costs
DNSStreaming media content such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, iPlayer and more outside of their geographically restricted areasNormally Cheaper
No loss of speed
Bypass ISP restricted websites
Settings must be set in router directly
No privacy is offered
ibVPN ($3.08 per month)
UnblockUS ($4.45 per month)
Overplay ($4.95 per month)
VPNEncrypting web traffic and protecting your privacy from ISPs, Governments, and Websites.

Masking your geographical location to allow you to unblock websites not allowed in your country similar to the DNS service above.
Privacy
Encrypted Web Traffic
Multiple servers are available with each provider
Bypass ISP, Government restricted websites and censorship
Generally mrs expensive than DNS
Only one server can be selected at any time so must be changed if you wish to appear in multiple countries
ibVPN ($3.08 per month)
SwitchVPN ($3.12 per month)
PrivateInternetAccess ($3.33 per month)
Earth VPN ($3.33 per month)
VPN4ALL ($4.08 per month)
Pure VPN ($4.16 per month)

Pure VPN ($4.16 per month)
Plus More here

As you can see, for less than a beer a month there is a large selection of convenient and good value offers around to help you get the entertainment you want.  With more and more people “cutting the cord” and getting rid of their traditional TV providers, this type of media access is only going to gain traction.

Whatever your preference when considering DNS Service vs VPN Service, the bottom line is whats the point if you don’t know whats available.  Below is a sample of content available.

 

 


https://abc.go.com/watch
https://www.abc.net.au
https://video.adultswim.com
https://www.aertv.ie
https://www.aetv.com/videos/display.jsp
https://www.aljazeera.com
https://america.aljazeera.com
https://www.en.aljazeerasport.tv
https://www.amazon.com/gp/video/ontv/start
https://www.amctv.com/videos
https://animal.discovery.com/tv/tv-shows.html
https://video.aol.com/
https://videos.arte.tv
https://www.australianopen.com
https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/tv
https://www.en.beinsports.net/
https://www.bet.com
https://www.bigbash.com.au
https://bigpondguide.com/
https://www.bloomberg.com/tv/
https://www.bravotv.com/full-episodes
https://www.canalplus.fr
https://www.cartoonnetwork.com
https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/clips/p00pxbmm
https://www.cbc.ca/video/
https://www.cbs.com/video/
https://www.channel4.com/
https://www.citytv.com
https://www.comedycentral.com
https://www.crackle.com
https://www.crunchyroll.com
https://watch.ctv.ca
https://www.cwtv.com/cw-video
https://www.deezer.com/en/
https://www.channel5.com/
https://watch.discoverychannel.ca
https://dsc.discovery.com/videos/
https://abcfamily.go.com
https://video.disney.com
https://www.dmax.de
https://www.dramafever.com/
https://eleven.com.au/catch-up-and-videos.htm
https://www.foodnetwork.com/food-network-full-episodes/videos/index.html
https://www.foodnetwork.co.uk
https://www.fox.com
https://www.france2.fr
https://programmes.france3.fr
https://www.france4.fr
https://documentaires.france5.fr
https://www.francetv.fr
https://vod.fxnetworks.com
https://www.globaltv.com
https://play.google.com
https://grooveshark.com
https://www.hbogo.com
https://www.hgtv.com/on-tv/index.html
https://www.history.com
https://www.hulu.com
https://www.itv.com/TVShows
https://www.lavozmexico.com/videos/
https://www.rugby.livesport.tv/
https://www.logotv.com/video
https://www.lovefilm.com
https://www.marvel.com
https://www.maxgo.com
https://play.mediasetpremium.it
https://military.discovery.com
https://www.militaryhistoryonline.com
https://mlb.mlb.com/index.jsp
https://www.mlssoccer.com
https://www.mog.com
https://www.mtv.com/videos/home.jhtml
https://www.muchmusic.com
https://www.muzu.tv
https://www.mylifetime.com
https://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/?source=NavVidHome
https://www.nba.com/nbatv
https://www.nbc.com/video/library
https://stream.nbcolympics.com/figure-skating/winter/15417/
https://www.netflix.com
https://www.netflix.ca
httpss://www.netflix.com
https://www.netflix.co.uk
https://gamepass.nfl.com
https://www.nhl.com
https://www.nick.com/videos
https://one.com.au
https://oxygen.com
https://www.pandora.com
https://video.pbs.org/
https://www.playon.tv
https://www.pluzz.fr
https://rai.it/
https://www.rdio.com/
https://www.rhapsody.com/
https://www.rte.ie/player/
https://www.s4c.co.uk
https://www.sbs.com.au
https://www.sho.com
https://video.sky.it/
https://go.sky.com
https://www.slacker.com
https://www.smithsonianchannel.com
https://songza.com
https://www.sonyentertainmentnetwork.com/ca-en/video-unlimited/
https://www.southparkstudios.com
https://www.speed.com
https://www.spike.com
https://www.sportsnet.ca
https://www.spotify.com
https://www.starwars.com/watch
https://www.stv.tv
https://www.svtplay.se
https://www.syfy.com
https://www.tbs.com/video
https://www.tcm.com
https://tvolucion.esmas.com
https://ten.com.au
https://tensport.com.au
https://videos.tf1.fr
https://www.tg4.ie/
https://www.theonion.com
https://www.theage.com.au
https://www.thewb.com
https://www.tou.tv
https://www.trutv.com
https://watch.tsn.ca
https://www.turntable.fm
https://www.tv.com
https://www.tv3.ie/3player
https://mytv.tvb.com
https://www.tvland.com
https://tvnz.co.nz/video
https://www.ufc.com
https://uktv.co.uk
https://www.universalsports.com
https://cocina.univision.com
https://www.usanetwork.com
https://www.u.tv
https://www.vh1.com
https://www.vudu.com
https://www.wat.tv/
https://www.wetv.com
https://www.wwe.com
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au
https://www.canberratimes.com.au
https://www.smh.com.au
https://www.watoday.com.au
https://zattoo.com

ABC, Adult Swim, Al Jazeera Sports, Are TV, A&E, Amazon Instant Video, AMC HD, Animal Planet, AOL TV, ARTE, Australian OPen, BBC iPlayer, BeIN Sports, BET Networks, BlinkBox, T20, Big Pond Video, Bloomberg, Bravo, Canal+, Cartoon Network, cbbc, CBC Television, CBS, Channel 4, CityTV, Comedy Central, Crackle Crunchy Roll, CTV, The CW, Deezer, Channel 5, Discovery, ABC Family, Disney Channel, DMAX, Dramafever, the Food Network, FOX, Frane 2 / 3/ 4/ 5 and France TV, FX, Global, Google Play, HBO, HGTV, History Channel, Hulu Plus, ITV, Lovefilm, Marvel, Max GO, MLB, MLS, MOG, MTV, Much, Natrional Geographic, NBA tv, Netflix, NFL direct, NHL, NIckelodeon, Now TV, Pandora, PBS, PlayOn, Rhapsody, RDE, S4C, Showtime, Sky Italia, Sky Go uk, Speed, Spike TV, Sportsnet, Spotify, Star Sports, STV, SVT.se, Syfy, tbs, TCM, Televisa, ten, ten sport, wb.tv, tsn sports, turntable, tv.com, 3, UFC, Universal Sports, USA network, UTV, VH1, Vudu, Wat, WWE, Zattoo

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