My MacBook is bound to a Windows Active Directory domain. For the computer to keep contact with the domain controller, the DNS server needs to be set to the IP address of that controller. However, since we are talking about a laptop, it often goes off-site where so that DNS server is not available. In Windows, this is a very easy fix as the DNS settings are customized for different networks. I cannot figure out how to do this for macOS without manually changing it when I need to.

1 Answer 1


My Macbook is also bound to a AD domain, but I do not have any such DNS issues. DNS settings are configurable per network connection type in System Preferences. System Preferences>Network>Advanced>DNS.

Simply edit (if allowed?) the DNS entry for the connection type. You can have more than two DNS entries, so for example, you might simply ADD Google DNS to the work DNS. In this case, if the work DNS are not available, it will fail-over to Google DNS.

You could do this for all network types, or perhaps just for wifi, if you use a hardline at work.

  • I don't trust Google (if you're not paying, you're the product, not the customer), so I will use another DNS, but this seems conceptually sound. Thanks.
    – Andrew
    Jan 31, 2017 at 17:35

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