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Computer Often Hangs Downloading "Google Stuff"

Am I Having DNS Problems on My Computer?

12:38 pm on Oct 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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About a year ago, I bought a new Macbook Pro 15.6 inch computer. It's a wonderful computer.

Unfortunately, since that time I sometimes - seemingly at random - have difficulty reaching Google, Google News, Google Images, etc...When I try to go to those sites, sometimes nothing ever loads - in Firefox it just says "Connecting to....", and that can go on for minutes at a time before things finally come back to life and then all works well.

Moreover, this occasionally strikes websites too - websites sometimes "hang" loading when the sites (including my own) are fetching scripts from Google, scripts such as Google Analytics, Google Fonts, Google Adsense, etc...

I have never seen this problem happen for any "Non-Google" property. Instead, whenever things seem to hang loading it always is "Google Related."

So far, I've solved this problem one of two ways. Close the browser, re-launch the browser and all works well. Or I flush the DNS cache on the computer. While that works for the "short term," it would be nice to figure out what's causing this problem so I'm not having to deal with it a few times a week like I do now.

I've seen this happen when using Chrome and Safari, too - so I know it isn't a strange FireFox bug.

Any suggestions?


Edit - Oh, I'll also add. I don't think it is "router related," either. I recently had to get a new (and different type of) DSL modem/router as I upgraded my service with ATT. The problem I'm sometimes having reaching Google properties has happened with both routers.
2:24 pm on Oct 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I can only say, "me too". I've seen it on iMac, and MacBook Pro. I have no idea why it happens but it does, commonly and I have wondered why it hangs so badly - sometimes enough so that I need to use "Force Quit" to be able to close the browser. I have installed an app called istat menus that give me quick data and graphs showing things like CPU usage and when I see the Google hang thing, it is whamming CPU at close to 100%. I picture these tentacles reaching down for the combination locks on the cookie cupboard. It appears to be related to some GA tasks, but because particular tasks are done sooo fast and I sometimes move not-fast-enough, I have not isolated what task sets it off. I have also seen it during the loading of AdSense ads on my own site with no GA or other Google resources, enough that I remove the ads to not inflict pain and suffering on my visitors.

The after effect of these events is that after force-quit, the browser will try to go back to what it was doing when forced to quit. I see this happening regularly on one site that I need to log in to a few times a day, and I've noticed that if I move very slowly through the log-in process it is less likely to happen. I once captured the headers there to try to see what it was, but it went on forever and wasn't telling me much. It wasn't critically important and it is always possible that it could be something in the settings of my computer, my browser, their website - or something else. I wish I could tell you what it is but I don't know.
7:26 pm on Oct 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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The DNS server my ISP provides, causes the issue you're describing.
Have you ever tried to configure your router to use Google's DNS Lookup service for a few days?
Fixed it up for me, and made my browsing faster.
9:05 pm on Oct 18, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I can only say, "me too". I've seen it on iMac, and MacBook Pro.

We're all looking suspiciously at the Mac's local hosts file, aren't we? I've noticed the hanging issue sporadically, though I hadn't associated it with google-- possibly because practically everything these days involves google at some point, whether it's ads or embedded fonts or ...

And then there are the supplemental issues I get with Camino, which apparently hates dealing with IP/host lookups that were modified more recently than the browser's final update (such as anything involving local sites on MAMP, or my test site's IPv6 address). It remains my first choice because, among other things, it's got the best ad blocker. You'd think it would become less and less effective over the years, as advertisers get sneakier, but 'tain't so.

Does it happen on all operating systems? I'm currently on 10.9, and can't remember if there were the same issues on 10.6. I kinda think yes.

Have you ever tried to configure your router to use Google's DNS Lookup service

There's something a little bit creepy about using any given organization's own service to bypass egregious problems caused by other services trying to interface with the organization. Insert nasty crack about any-popular-ISP here. I'd really like to think they're not doing it on purpose :(