Google DNS Makes Apple Download Tragically Slow

Sun 16 October 2011

Filed under OS

Tags CompassionNeeded Geek Lamer Moments

I wanted to install OSX Lion on my new hard disk. I moved my old drive to an external enclosure, and booted with Command+R to load the recovery console. I formatted the disk and then went to "Install".

After about thirty minutes, the time still said "5 hours, 16 minutes" remaining. I loaded up my firewall and found no traffic at all.

I messed around, rebooted to Lion on the old drive, and tried a fresh download of the Lion Install in App Store. (Hold Option, then click on "installed" when looking at the OS X Lion Page).

The download did run, but it was pitifully slow. Over two hours it averaged about 200K/s. I have a modest 15M/2M FiOS connection and I expected much better.

After tooling about, I located my providers stock DNS's. I have been using Google DNS - because it's super fast. I found the DNS w/ the lowest latency, and then I changed DNSMasq to pass all request for "*.apple.com" to the Frontier DNS.

My effect was immediate. I flushed my local dns cache, then paused and restarted the download.

Immediate Results

Immediately after changing DNS.

Five minutes later

Five minutes after changing DNS.


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