The first step in setting up your network is to add it to the DNSFilter Dashboard, which is located at app.dnsfilter.com for most customers. (If a different link was provided in your welcome email, use that one.)
Adding a network to the dashboard is essential, because DNSFilter operates a customer-only, closed resolver. Until your site is added, we won’t recognize the queries and respond to them.
Add your external IPs to the dashboard before making changes to your network
The first step in configuring DNSFilter is adding your IP information as a "Site" on our dashboard. Otherwise, we will not expect traffic from your location and will deny DNS requests until the site is added. However, if you've accidentally reversed this order and made changes to your network before adding them in the dashboard, we always Allow app.dnsfilter.com so that you can easily correct this
Adding Your Site
The section below covers on adding sites individually. If you need to bulk import sites, you can find more information in our Bulk Import Sites documentation.
A Site is considered a single, physical location (or “network”), which usually has one ip address, but may have more if utilizing multiple internet connections, or if you’re a larger organization with an IP subnet.
Adding a Site is the quickest and most comprehensive way to be protected with DNSFilter.
When you sign-in for the first time, you will be automatically placed in the Deployments > Sites section of the Dashboard.
Add the following information to your Site:
- Name (required). Ex: NYC Office
- Physical Address or Latitude & Longitude (recommended). Required to display in the Geo Activity Map.
- Disable Roaming Clients (default is disabled). If you experience connectivity issues while your VPN is active, enable this toggle to disable the Roaming Client. The setting is only
applicable to this Site.
- IP Address(es) or Dynamic DNS Hostname [see additional information below] (required).
- If you have only one WAN IP address, you can use the Fill Current IP button to add the IP address of your current location.
- If your site has more than one IP address (multiple WAN links, failover links, Cloud VoIP PBX etc) you should add these additional IPs as well.
- External ID (optional). The purpose of this identifier is to enable integrate with external services, such as Zapier.
Dynamic IP Addresses / Dynamic DNS
If your Site has a dynamic IP address, which is common with consumer-grade internet connections, Dynamic DNS must be utilized to ensure DNSFilter always has the correct IP address for your network. If the IP address should change and Dynamic DNS is not utilized, it will result in DNS downtime, as DNSFilter does not serve DNS requests to unknown IP addresses for security reasons.
IP Subnets / CIDR Blocks
The Dashboard accepts IP subnets up to /24. You may enter the block directly into the IP address field (ex: 188.8.131.52/24). For large blocks, contact support and we can add them to your account.
Create and Assigning a Filtering Policy
Creating a Policy
The final step to add your site to the dashboard is to create a Filtering Policy and assign it to that location. This will determine what is allowed/blocked on your network, as well as what the users on that network see when they surf to a blocked website.
Begin by naming the policy, then use the tabs at the top to set filtering Categories, SafeSearch settings, Threat categories, and Allow list/Block list entries. When a category is selected, it will turn red and show an 🚫 icon to show that blocking is active for that category. Policy selections are save as they're created.
Assigning a Policy
Up to this point, you have added your network and a policy in the dashboard. All that remains is to assign your newly-created policy to your network.
- Navigate back to the Deployments > Sites section on the dashboard.
- Find the line for the site and the dropdown for “Policy/Schedule”.
- Select the dropdown and select the newly-created policy.
Congratulations, your DNSFilter account is now setup to receive and filter traffic from your network!
To verify your site was added correctly, test your connection. Instructions on how to test can be found in the Testing Your Connection documentation.