How to clear the DNS cache in Windows 11?

Having connection problems? Unable to access certain websites? You always get an error (This site is inaccessible – DNS_PROBE_STARTED/DNS_PROBE_FINISHED_BAD_CONFIG)? The problem may be due to an outdated or corrupted local DNS cache. In most cases, these problems can be solved by clearing the DNS cache in Windows 11. This is called flushing the DNS cache.

There are several methods to flush the DNS cache in Windows 11. You can use Command Prompt, Windows PowerShell, the Run command or do it directly in your web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, etc.).

Clearing the DNS cache in Windows 11 is a very simple process that does not require any special skills. In this article, we will see together the different methods that allow you to clear DNS cache on your Windows 11 PC. Follow the few detailed steps carefully and you should get through it without any hassle. Let’s get started!

Contents
  • What is the DNS cache?
  • Why clear the DNS cache?
  • Clear DNS cache in Windows 11Via
  • Command PromptVia
  • Windows PowerShellVia
  • Run commandDelete
  • DNS cache in your web browserIn
  • Google ChromeIn
  • Mozilla Firefox

What is the DNS cache?

DNS stands for Domain Name System. The main function of DNS is to translate domain names (for example, www.google.com) into IP addresses (142.250.179.99).

When you browse the Internet, your web browser queries the DNS servers (a kind of directory) configured on your device to retrieve the IP addresses of the pages you want to access.

Once a connection is established between your device and the website, your computer stores the information in a temporary file called the DNS cache. The DNS cache contains the domain names and IP addresses of the websites you have visited.

This file allows your computer to avoid querying the DNS servers each time you try to visit the same websites. Instead, your computer will refer to the DNS cache to resolve domain names to IP addresses more quickly. As a result, the loading time of the websites you usually visit will be much faster.

So now you know what the DNS cache is for. Now let’s see the importance of clearing the DNS cache from time to time.

Why clear the DNS cache?

Your computer automatically updates the DNS cache periodically. However, over time, the DNS cache may contain unnecessary or corrupted records with incorrect information. This can cause slowdowns or prevent access to certain websites.

Websites that you used to visit may change their domain name or IP address due to a change in hosting provider, for example. The existing data in the DNS cache becomes obsolete or invalid. As a result, you will not be able to access the websites in question.

Clearing the DNS cache means deleting all IP addresses associated with the domain names you visited. This way, the DNS records start from scratch so that your computer has the latest updates. This step can solve potential problems connecting to certain websites.

Now that you know why it’s important to clear the DNS cache, let’s get to the practical part: how to clear the DNS cache in Windows 11.

Clear DNS cache in Windows 11

Below are the different methods to delete or clear DNS cache on Windows 11. No matter which method you choose, the result will be the same.

Via Command Prompt

You can use the command prompt to delete or reset the DNS cache in Windows 11. To do this, do the following:

1. First, open a Command Prompt window as an administrator. To do this, click on the Start menu and search for “Command Prompt” or “cmd”. Then select the “Run as administrator” option in the right pane.

2. Before clearing the DNS cache, you can view all current DNS entries stored on your Windows computer. To do this, type or copy/paste the following command and press Enter.

ipconfig /displaydns

As you can see, this command displays all DNS information on your computer. If you just want to clear the DNS cache, use the following command.

3. To clear the DNS cache, type or copy/paste the following command into the command prompt:

ipconfig /flushdns

When the task is complete, you will receive a message indicating that the DNS resolver cache has been successfully flushed.

Via Windows PowerShell

The second method to flush DNS in Windows 11 is to use Windows PowerShell. Here’s how to do it.

1. Open the Windows PowerShell in administrator mode. To do this, right-click on the Start menu or press Windows + X at the same time, and then click on “Windows Terminal (Administrator)”.

2. Type or copy and paste the following command into the Windows PowerShell window, then press Enter.

Clear-DnsClientCache

Unlike Command Prompt, you will not get a message that the DNS cache has been deleted.

Via the Run command

Another easy way to clear the DNS cache is to use the Run command. Here is how to do it.

1. Open the Run command by pressing the Windows + R keys simultaneously.

2. Then type the following command and click “OK” or press Enter.

This will clear the DNS cache on your Windows 11 PC.

Clear DNS cache in your web browser

Web browsers such as Google Chrome and Firefox store their own DNS cache. And you should know that the DNS cache stored by your web browser may be different from the one in Windows 11. Therefore, if a particular website doesn’t work on Google Chrome, but opens with another browser, you can clear the DNS cache of the Chrome browser to potentially solve the problem. Of course, this is just an example, but you get the idea.

In Google Chrome

1. Start by launching the Google Chrome web browser.

2. Then type or copy and paste the following URL into the address bar and press Enter.

chrome://net-internals/#dns

3. Finally, click the “Clear host cache” button to clear the DNS cache in Google Chrome.

In Mozilla Firefox

To clear the DNS cache in Firefox, the principle is the same as with the Chrome browser.

1. Open the Mozilla Firefox web browser on your computer.

2. Type or copy and paste the following URL into the address bar and press Enter.

about:networking#dns

3. Finally, click the “Clear DNS Cache” button to clear the DNS cache in Firefox.

There you go, now you know the different methods to clear DNS cache (flush DNS) on your Windows 11 PC.