Monday, 28 April 2014

How to Fix Netflix (Google) DNS on Roku Update

This post will show you how to fix the Netflix's hardcoded Google DNS on the Roku.

Roku rolled out an update sometime in the last week in which the Netflix application switched from using global DNS settings to hardcoded 8.8.8.8 Google DNS settings.  I have nothing against Google DNS, but I need to use custom settings because I use Unblock-Us to trick Netflix into giving me USA content....and I'm in Canada.   My Roku is currently on version 5.4 build 3340.

Now, Roku is the only network device in my home that does not allow custom DNS settings.... but that's a different complaint for a different post.  Suffice to say that to trick any application on the Roku, custom DNS must be configured at the router level.

I'm going to outline 2 different router-level methods for fixing the Netflix hardcoded DNS: (1) Rerouting 8.8.8.8 to your gateway, and (2) outright blocking any communication with 8.8.8.8

Method 1 - Rerouting to your Gateway

The first step is to log in to your router.  If you don't know how to do that, stop reading and call your go-to tech support family member.  If you're feeling adventurous, see How to Find Your Router's IP Address.  Save the router's address for the configuration we're doing below.

In this example I'm using an old TRENDNET TEW-432BRP with local ip 192.168.10.1

Find your Routing Table settings.  In mine, it's under Routing > Static.  We're going to create a new static route so that every time the Roku (or any network device) looks for 8.8.8.8, it will be automatically directed to the 192.168.10.1 router ip.  As long as the 192.168.10.1 router is configured for custom DNS, it's bye-bye 8.8.8.8.  Enter the following settings:

Network Address: 8.8.8.8
Network Mask: 255.255.255.255
Gateway Address: 192.168.10.1 (router IP)
Interface: LAN
Metric: 2

Make sure you add & enable the route and that's it.




Method 2 - Blocking Google DNS

Get to your router's configuration page as per Method 1, and find your IP Filter configuration settings. On my TRENDNET, it's under Access > Filter > IP Filter.  Now, simply add the range 8.8.8.8 to 8.8.8.8 (the lone IP address) and enable the filter.  Now, all traffic trying to reach 8.8.8.8 will be blocked and timeout.  In the case of Roku's Netflix, it will timeout and default to the global DNS settings.



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