Whether you are looking to research, switch, or add additional DNS providers for redundancy, it's important to consider several factors and ask the right questions that will determine the provider that best suits your organization's needs.
Where is your DNS traffic located?
Do you know where the bulk of your traffic is coming from? Depending on the demand and location of your queries, your "Best DNS" choice can vary drastically.
Let's take a look at this scenario if North America is where you want to focus your efforts. In the example below you can see we are comparing 11 DNS providers over the last 7 days.
DNS Speed Consistency
As you can see in the visual above Cloudflare, NS1, DNS Made Easy, and DNSimple has the fastest average speeds. Another thing they have going for them is consistency. If you were interested in DNS stability, you wouldn't choose a DNS provider that had the fastest performance one day, and the worst in the following days. Erratic performance and uptime are a giant red flag.
DNS Provider Uptime Test
Based on the results of the performance testing, we narrowed down our top 4 providers shown below. Uptime is s critical component of your DNS strategy and you want to choose a provider with 100% uptime. It is also helpful to know which providers have had historical outages. They happen, and they can be costly. Another reason to have secondary DNS implemented. Thankfully, DNS Made Easy, Cloudflare, DNSimple, and NS1 are all showing 100% uptime during the testing timeframe.
DNS Interval Testing
With PerfOps you can choose from set timeframes of 60 minutes, 24 hours, 7 days, and 30 days. Additionally, if you are wanting an even more specific timeframe for troubleshooting purposes you can pinpoint a custom time period. For instance, you can look at several months at a glance to review overall performance and notice performance trends.
Server Performance - Why it Matters
Let's just say you already have a DNS provider and you want to further investigate server performance. After you have already reviewed speeds, with a single click you unlock a bevy of information that is valuable for your IT team. In the example below we chose DNSimple as the provider we wanted to review. The raw logs shown in the image below, provide pages of information you can access that sheds light on what nameservers are showing best in different cities. If you wanted to break down the information even further you can click on "view" and gain access to the full report of that particular name server.
View Name Servers - City and State
There are no limits to what PerfOps can do when it comes to providing important data that can help you make informed decisions about your DNS network. Did you know that you can even capture data on a city and state-specific level? Based on the image above, we can see that Buffalo, New York is at the top of the list. If you wanted to break down that information further, you can type your desired city in the "select city" and then click "apply filter". The image below represents that detailed view of all nameservers in Buffalo. This city is performing quite well for DNSimple showing 1-2 milliseconds for their nameservers. If there was an issue, you could check out the raw logs, and to a traceroute to see if there are routing problems.
DNS Testing for All
Benchmark testing is important to make sure your network is running optimally at all times. Considering what locations are most important to your organization and running performance tests regularly is a beneficial asset to your DNS infrastructure.