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Have you ever wondered how the internet “knows” which website you’re trying to access when you type in a web address in your browser? A computer certainly can’t read that address in human language. That’s where the Domain Name System (DNS) comes in.
A DNS protocol converts the human-readable hostnames to the relevant IP address stored in its directory. Essentially, it is used to locate the nameserver or website that you’re trying to access by running a DNS query. You can obtain these DNS services via a basic free package or a premium package with a paid subscription.
Let’s explore whether a premium DNS is really worth it and what benefits it provides to justify its cost.
Is Premium DNS Worth It?
Getting a premium DNS package is unequivocally worth it because its advantages outweigh the small subscription fee that you would have to pay. However, it may be superfluous, especially for people who are just getting into web hosting.
A free DNS host provides you with most of the features that an average customer might need to run their website. However, for services like traffic security, high server uptime, fast page loading, and load balance, a premium package is a must-have.
How Does A DNS Work?
A DNS works just like a contacts directory in your phone where you type in a name and your cellphone calls the number linked to it at the backend. DNS maps different names and numbers to each other, but in this case, names being the website domains, and numbers being their IP addresses.
Whenever an end user enters a website URL in the browser, a request is generated known as the DNS query. The query is forwarded to the DNS Resolver, managed by the user’s ISP. It is then routed to the DNS root name server, where its unique IP identifier is located, which loads the web address for the end user.
What Makes Premium DNS Different?
You can find a surprising number of free DNS hosting services considering their importance in running a web server. However, not every DNS service is free-of-cost. Some are considered premium and come with a subscription tag. With that said, what differentiates a premium DNS service from a regular one, other than the obvious subscription cost?
A comparison of features in free and premium DNS is given below:
|Feature||Basic Free DNS||Premium DNS|
|DNS Security Extension||No||Yes|
|Anycast Global Network||No||Yes|
|Multiple DNS Support||No||Yes|
The aforementioned features are what we generally find in the relevant plans of a DNS hosting service. You should check out individual DNS hosts and their available plans for the exact services they offer.
Some of the most used free DNS include CloudFare, Namecheap, and Rackspace. Whereas, some widely popular premium hosting services are Amazon Route 53, GoDaddy, and Dyn.
Advantages Of Premium DNS
Now that you are aware of the extra features that a Premium DNS provides to its users, let’s look at some benefits it has.
- Network Security
Your cybersecurity is only as strong as your network’s most exposed exploit. Basic DNS hosts are prone to floods of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, bringing the whole network down. So, in case of a DDoS attack, your webservers can face hours or even days of downtime if your service provider isn’t sufficiently secure.
Most premium DNS hosts employ DDOS protection securities through traffic monitoring, alarm system, and traffic filtering. Some even use AI algorithms to predict potential malicious attacks and block them.
- Servers Redundancy
Another important attribute that premium DNS services provide is the redundancy in their hosting servers. Since premium networks are usually pretty large to host a huge chunk of nameservers on their systems, they have the capacity to provide redundancy as well.
It distributes your DNS information on several servers to re-route the traffic in case one of the servers is down, or for traffic load balancing. Hence, in case of a DDoS attack or substantial traffic on your website, your traffic can be distributed over different servers to reduce latency in the network.
- Improved Performance
The overall performance difference between a basic and premium DNS is self-evident. Due to better traffic management through multiple routes, web browsing is efficient and fast with a premium service. Premium DNS providers also employ Anycast services, with worldwide coverage.
They have multiple data centers scattered across different countries. This allows your data to always be routed through the nearest physical or virtual server, increasing its transfer speed. Aside from speed, premium DNS also provides better customization and configurability options to the domain owners.
Should You Go For A Premium DNS Host?
If you run an online business, a government, a corporation, or any commercial website, premium DNS is not optional for you. Services like attack monitoring, quick network round-trip time (RTT), improved traffic routing, traffic filtering, and increased server up-time are invaluable for your website.
However, as a beginner who’s just running a simple blog or a small-scale website, you can enjoy all the basic features of DNS hosting with a free service. If your daily traffic is minuscule, there’s no need to go for a premium package, because then you’ll be paying for services that your network doesn’t even utilize.
With that, we hope we have answered your query regarding a premium DNS. Now you can decide for yourself whether you need the premium features at the cost of a monthly subscription fee. Let us know in the comments which free DNS hosts you think are good alternatives for everyday non-commercial users!