Using Cloudflare and OpenDNS

Hi, I understand Cloudflare and OpenDNS are complimentary to one another. How do I configure my router as both services have different DNS addresses? Thank you.

Do you mean Cloudflare’s Public DNS at, or Cloudflare’s Name Servers for hosted sites?

If you want to use Public DNS, one would be primary (, and the other would be backup (

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Thank you for your prompt response. With your proposed setting, would that mean I only use one or the other? Given that they are complimentary, I am confused as to how they actually work together. Should this setting be the same for my iMac and other Apple device network settings?

Yes, you’ll just be using the first one…unless it’s unreachable. In that case, it goes to the second one. For example, I use MacOS (and iOS). Every single DNS query I make in MacOS goes to the first DNS server in my list.

I’ve heard, supposedly, that older Windows versions would figure out which DNS server was quicker, then tend to use that one, but I’ve found conflicting information.

How did you hear that they were complimentary?

Back then, Cloudflare did not run Recursive (Public) DNS. They were complementary because:

  1. A website needs an Authoritative DNS where the owner can record their IP addresses to use for their website.
  2. A web surfer needs a Recursive DNS they can call upon to find out a site’s IP address. The recursive DNS calls around (or directly) to the Authoritative DNS server to get the IP address.

Now, not only does Cloudflare continue to run Authoritative Name Servers ( for their customers’ accounts, but they also also run Recursive Name Servers ( for the public to use to look up IP addresses.


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