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Claudiu, an old hand at technology and science magazines, follows everything that comes from Microsoft closely. His sudden interest in computers began when he saw his first computer at home as a child. However, his… Read more
The new DNS over HTTPS feature in Windows 11 has been implemented to help encrypt your communications.
You can start this new feature by simply selecting the align DNS server option.
Microsoft has only confirmed a few DoH servers, and they may be overcrowded.
It is important for IT administrators to know that they can configure the new feature through Group Policy.
Windows 11 has a new DNS over HTTPS feature that lets you perform encrypted DNS lookups to bypass certain blocked Internet activities.
In fact, many governments and ISPs monitor a user’s DNS traffic to enforce bans and censorship.
This is where DNS over HTTPS comes into play and bypasses all these imposed restrictions.
What is DNS over HTTPS and what is it for?
When you browse the Internet and visit a website, your computer contacts a Domain Name System (DNS) server to obtain the website’s IP address.
Such a DNS query can be traced by the government or even by your ISP. However, if you use DNS over HTTPS (DoH), this lookup is encrypted and cannot be retrieved from the outside.
If you are using a Chromium-based browser, such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Opera, you already have DoH support.
However, this only applies to web browsing, not to data transfers from other applications running on your computer.
By incorporating this feature into the operating system, you can ensure that all DNS requests are encrypted.
How do I use the DNS feature over HTTPS in Windows 11?
This is not the first time Microsoft has tested the DoH feature. It first appeared in the Windows 10 Preview Build 20185 for Windows Insiders, but was dropped pretty quickly.
Today, with the release of Windows 11, the giant from Redmond mocks this feature again. If you have installed the draft version, you can activate it by going to Settings, then selecting Network and Internet, selecting Ethernet/Wireless, and clicking Change DNS Server Assignment.
The preferred DNS encryption option provides the following options:
No encryption only – Equivalent to OFF
Encryption only (DNS over HTTPS) – Use DoH servers only
Preferably with encryption, only without encryption – If DoH servers are not available, switch to standard DNS without encryption
What are DNS servers over HTTPS?
As you have seen above, DoH encryption has a tricky aspect, which is that the data must pass through a DoH server to be encrypted.
However, there are not many servers that support DoH and can be used by default under Windows 11.
In fact, Microsoft has provided a short list of servers that can provide DNS-over-HTTPS functionality:
Cloudflare: 184.108.40.206 and 220.127.116.11 DNS servers
Google: 18.104.22.168 and 22.214.171.124 DNS servers
Quad9: 126.96.36.199 and 149.112.112 DNS servers
There will be a lot of people soon, unless there is something that causes many more to be born.
However, if you are an IT manager, you can create your own DoH server definitions by running the following commands in netsh or PowerShell.
Team Netsh :
netsh dns encryption add server=[IP address of resolver] dohtemplate=[DoH template of resolver] autoupgrade=yes udpfallback=no
PowerShell command :
Add-DnsClientDohServerAddress -ServerAddress ‘[IP address of the converter]’. -DohTemplate ‘[Resolver-DoH-template]’ -AllowFallbackToUdp $False -AutoUpgrade $True
Configuring DoH with Group Policy
Type Group Policy in a Windows search and click Edit Group Policy in the results.
Take the next route: Computer Configuration/Administrative Templates/Network/DNS Client
Find and double-click the Set DNS to HTTPS policy.
Click Enable, then select the desired option from the Configure DoH Options drop-down menu.
Microsoft allows you to set DNS to HTTPS in Windows 11 via Group Policy, use the steps above.
We hope our guide has helped you learn more about DNS over HTTPS and how to configure it.
If you are experiencing problems with the new version of Windows 11, check out this comprehensive guide to the latest bugs and their fixes.
What do you think of the new DNS over HTTPS feature in Windows 11? Tell us what you think in the comments below.
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