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I'm at work. Currently, we're having some fierce networking problems and every website I try to open throws an error similar to Firefox can't find the server at www.google.com.. However, I can still browse StackOverflow and I am posting this, which proves that I'm not reading from cache.

How is this possible?

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migrated from superuser.com Sep 15 '10 at 15:36

This question came from our site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

    
Sounds like a problem for SuperUser. –  wheaties Sep 14 '10 at 20:54
    
Sounds like DNS issues. –  Stefan Kendall Sep 14 '10 at 20:56
1  
Point your DNS at 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4 and see what happens. –  Stefan Kendall Sep 14 '10 at 20:57
11  
So now you've migrated the question from the one site he can still reach to one he can't. I understand the motivation, but realize that you didn't do him any favors. –  Mark Ransom Sep 14 '10 at 21:00
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4 Answers

your network is experiencing DNS outage. SO name is still in the local DNS resolver cache.

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Wow, what does it say about SO that he has SO in his DNS resolver cache, but not google???? –  BillN Sep 15 '10 at 20:05
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Sounds like a DNS issue. Point your DNS at 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4 and see what happens.

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For this specific issue it sounds like @Franci Penov and @iftrue are right - you're having DNS issues.

On a more general level you should make sure you have some sort of connectivity in case your primary network goes down. This can be a separate connection (DSL + cable or dialup), a cell phone with a data plan and tethering, or the local coffee shop.

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dig is your friend here for analysing DNS issues. If you're a Windows man like me, you can get dig for Windows from Nicholas Fong's site. (site also has basic user guide on it) - if you can't resolve it, the server's IP is 64.59.134.11 for your hosts file!

Find out the IP address of your primary DNS server then run

dig www.google.com. @ip.of.dns.server

If that yields something with

;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
com.                    900     IN      SOA     a.gtld-servers.net. nstld.verisign-grs.com.

(or similar) in the results, then your DNS server's poorly. If you get a list of results in the ANSWER section including www.google.com, www.l.google.com and www-tmmdi.l.google.com (for example) then your DNS resolver is working and your own PC is not.

As others have said, try Google's DNS servers. Alternatively, try OpenDNS' servers: 208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220. Best of luck...

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