Devices are not using pi-hole

Please follow the below template, it will help us to help you!

Expected Behaviour:

Devices should be using pi hole

Actual Behaviour:

Devices listed under network overview are not using pi hole

Debug Token:

Your debug log shows your Pi-hole has been successfully introduced into your network. It is also positively receiving, blocking and forwarding DNS queries (by 2 clients so far).

Check you’ve configured your network to make use of Pi-hole as described in Pi-hole’s documentation.

Note: When you are distributing Pi-hole as DNS server via DHCP, clients may take some time (until their DHCP lease renews) to adopt. You may force DHCP lease renewal by dis- and reconnecting devices to your network.

I have manually setup the DNS by typing the IP of the Pi-hole and the devices are listed under network overview. However, they do not use pi hole and shown as red colored filter. It has been couple hours since I set the DNS so I am not sure what is the problem here.

also, I configured more than 2 devices but somehow they are not connecting. I have disconnect them from the network and reconnecting but it did not fix the problem

You are saying you configured Pi-hole as DNS on each single device (i.e. not by a router setting)?

correct. I dont want to set up as the router DNS.

In that case, something in your network may interfere with DNS traffic.

  • a firewall on your Pi-hole machine may prohibit incoming/outgoing DNS traffic
  • your router may block or redirect DNS traffic to a DNS server of its own liking
  • you missed out on providing IPv6 DNS servers for your clients
    (edit: as you mentioned Apple devices, which tend to prefer IPv6 over IPv4)

Do you run a firewall?

(Note that my dis- and reconnecting advice was specific for adopting Pi-hole as DNS by DHCP lease renewal - no point doing that if you are not distributing Pi-hole via DHCP.)

I am running pi-hole on raspberry pi zero w and I am not positive if it has firewall. and I do run firewall on my router. Would those problem get solved if i set DNS server on my router instead of each device? I am not sure if this information helps but my mac and iphone were able to connect once after like an hour I setup the pihole but I restarted it since my other devices did not connect. Then no devices were able to connect

If you setup your Zero from a resh Raspbian image and just installed Pi-hole, iptables would be deployed, but no firewall rules blocking DNS would be configured.

You could verify by running the following commands on your Zero:

 sudo iptables -L
 sudo ip6tables -L

Note that this will check for iptables, but not any possible other firewall packages.

ip tables are empty

That leaves us with missing IPv6 or the router.

Could you verify you provided Pi-hole’s IPv4 and IPv6 addresses for your devices?

Note that from your debug log, your network apparently lacks direct upstream IPv6 connectivity, while your Pi-hole has established local network’s IPv6 connectivity.
Your Pi-hole’s respective addresses are:

(equivalent to with netmask


Your devices may be able to request DNS resolution via your router’s IPv6 address, bypassing Pi-hole.

I am bit confused. Pi-hole has a static IP and my devices has the IP of pi-hole as DNS server. both ip and ip6 tables are empty. though my phone is connected now

i have to assign IPv6 then?

Yes, you’d have to verify you provided both Pi-hole’s IPv4 and IPv6 addresses as DNS server for your devices.

by changing /etc/pihole/setupVars.conf ?

You’d have to manually provide Pi-hole’s IPv6 address as DNS on each device, similar to what you did for IPv4.

okay i will try that. thank you!

still does not work

Then let’s check if your router does intercept DNS traffic.
As I mentioned, some routers will block and/or redirect DNS traffic on your network. We are going to run a few nslookup commands to find out about this.

But before we start: Netgear C7800 would be such a device.
You wouldn’t happen to have one?
And if you do: Is it your own device, or was it commissioned to you by your ISP?

Specifically, what devices will not connect, and what OS does each run?