How to troubleshoot Smart DNS issues

In this article, you will learn how to resolve some of the most common smart DNS issues. You might need another device, such as a laptop or phone, for some of these steps.

You will find troubleshooting steps for the following issues:



Streaming service is unreachable

If you have successfully set Smart DNS on your device, but your preferred streaming service is not working, try the following steps:

  1. Try both Smart DNS servers. After activating the Smart DNS service, you received two server addresses. If your device has a DNS box for one DNS address only, try the first DNS server, then the other.

  2. If your device has two DNS boxes for two DNS addresses, enter the same DNS server to both lines, as shown in the picture below:

  3. Uninstall and reinstall the streaming app, or clear the streaming app's cache.

  4. Reboot your device.

  5. Log in to your router and set custom DNS on it. You can use as a primary DNS and as a secondary DNS.

  6. Since there are so many different routers, each with a different interface, you should look at your router's user manual or search for instructions online.

No internet connection after setting up Smart DNS

The most common reason you could lose internet connection with smart DNS is that you enabled smart DNS for a different IP address than your device (smart TV, Xbox, etc.).

First, try answering these questions:

  • Did you activate Smart DNS while connected to your workspace network or mobile data?
  • Do you have a dynamic IP (an IP address that eventually changes on its own?

Try the following steps to resolve the no-net issue:

  1. Ensure that another device you will use (laptop or phone) is connected to the same network as the device on which you will use Smart DNS.

  2. Go to Surfshark's dashboard using your laptop or phone.
  3. Once logged in to your account, go to the Smart DNS page.

  4. Click the Change IP button. This will activate Smart DNS for your new IP address.

  5. Check if Smart DNS works on your TV or gaming console now.

Smart DNS can not be activated because IPv6 was detected


You can only activate Smart DNS for IPv4 addresses. However, some networks have both - IPv4 and IPv6 protocols enabled. Experiencing this error means your system uses IPv6 as well.

You can try the following potential solutions to resolve the IPv6 detection issue:

  1. Disable IPv6 on your device to activate smart DNS on our website. Try disabling IPv6 on Windows, macOS, Android, and Linux.

  2. Disable IPv6 on your router. Some routers (not all) have the option to choose between IPv4 and IPv6 protocols.

    To find out if your router has this option, you should log in to your router and search through Internet, Network, WLAN, or IPv6 settings. You may find an option to turn off the IPv6 there.

  3. Contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Try contacting your internet network provider and ask if they could turn off the IPv6 on your system. Most of the time, they can easily do this.

The IP addresses do not match

You may have noticed that the IP address shown on your TV is different from the one you used to activate smart DNS. This is because you activated smart DNS for your external IP address, which is used for public communication. At the same time, your TV only shows you the internal IP used for communication between devices within the same network.

The internal IP address usually looks like this — 192.168.x.x. It's not publicly visible and only used for communication between different devices on the same network, so you don't have to worry about affecting the smart DNS setup. You can simply ignore it and proceed with the Smart DNS setup as usual.


Smart DNS is not supported

Sadly, there are some situations where Smart DNS can not be successfully used. If your Internet provider is hijacking DNS (makes you use their DNS at all times) or using a transparent proxy (a technology that intercepts requests from your device), problems with Smart DNS might occur.

In such a case, you can
set up VPN on your router or share the VPN connection from your laptop.

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