Not being able to easily access US TV Shows is a pain for people outside of the US unless they are lucky enough to have a Sky subscription that shows their show. That doesn’t guarantee though that those shows will be available though whenever they want. That’s where a new free service called Tunlr comes in.
It’s a free service that is available to anyone with an internet connection to use, as all you have to do is change your DNS settings to those of the Tunlr service, and you will instantly have access to sites like Hulu, ABC, MTV, BBC’s iPlayer etc. I have checked out the service from here in the UK to access Hulu to watch the pilot episode of Touch, and it works perfectly. This means that there is no application to download. Bear in mind though, that you don’t want to permanently change your DNS servers as this will put too much strain on the Tunlr ones. Just change them when you want to watch your shows, then simply change them back afterwards. Tunlr is not a VPN service, but simply a DNS (Domain Name System) unblocking service.
This would also be a great way for users in the US to watch the London 2012 Olympics for free, as opposed to being restricted to using only NBC. Most other countries in the world are able to watch it for free on YouTube without restrictions, so it’s a shame that US people will be blocked from watching it via YouTube.
So how do you set it up? Simple, all you have to do is change your DNS settings to those of the Tunlr ones, reboot and you are good to go. Changing these settings is very simple and only takes a few seconds to do.
To change then on Windows 7, head to your Control Panel and choose Network and Sharing Center. Once in this window you will see Change Adapter Settings on the left. Select it.
Next select the connection that you wish to change the DNS settings on, and Right-Click on it and select Properties. This will normally be called your Local Area Connection.
Now select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) and hit OK. The words, not the check box.
Before you change the DNS server addresses, make a note of what they were before. If you forget to do this, it’s really not a problem, just use the Google DNS server address instead after you are done. The Google DNS server addresses are:
- Primary: 22.214.171.124
- Secondary: 126.96.36.199
Now simply change the Primary DNS server to 188.8.131.52 and the Secondary DNS server to 184.108.40.206 These are the Tunlr ones that you will want in order to access your site of choice. Note these DNS settings are the new ones that were updated on August 16th 2012. If you haven’t updated your DNS settings you won’t be able to use the Tunlr network.
Click OK to the remaining open windows to exit them, and reboot your computer. You will now be able to access sites that would normally be restricted by geo-restriction like Hulu in the UK or trying to watch the BBC’s iPlayer in the US. This won’t give you access to the paid versions of these sites, but only to the freely available ones.
Sites that this currently works for are:
US Based Streaming Sites (amongst others)
- Hulu/ HuluPlus
- CW TV
- Lifetime TV
Non-US Based Streaming Sites
- BBC iPlayer (UK, English)
- Channel4 4oD (UK, English)
- iTV Player (UK, English)
- Zattoo (Switzerland, German)
Safari 4 or later (Mac OS X 10.5.6 or higher, Windows Vista or higher)
Mozilla Firefox 2.0 or later
Internet Explorer 7 or later (Windows XP is not supported)
Opera 8.0 or later
Google Chrome 6 or newer
- Iphone/ iPad
- Apple TV
I checked this out for myself by access and watching the pilot episode of Touch on Hulu. Normally, trying to access Hulu from the UK would result in the following screen:
Using the free Tunlr DNS servers, you will now have access:
Word of warning
Tunlr has become massively popular very quickly, and is feeling the effects of their popularity on the servers. Tunlr have stated on their blog that some users of the free service are accessing geo-fenced sites for upwards of 10hrs a day which is placing considerable strain on their network. From now on, if you use the service for more than 3hrs at a time, you will be entering the ‘Red Zone’. Should people continue to overuse the service they will be banned without question. So basically, if you are going to be using the service for extended periods of time then you should really be looking into getting yourself a decent VPN service. My choice of VPN would be CactusVPN as they have both UK and US servers and great speeds. It’s a paid VPN service, but is great value for money and they don’t retain logs. They are also P2P friendly (use their NL server for P2P)
It’s awesome that the people behind Tunlr have created this, so full credit to them. Any question, see their FAQ here.