How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide


VPN (Virtual Private Network) feels like an intimidating time period, however anybody who has used one will inform you how straightforward they’re to arrange and use. In the previous, VPNs had been primarily an enterprise-level phenomenon. However, privacy-cautious web customers at the moment are counting on VPNs greater than ever.

You can now get a VPN for a a lot cheaper price, set it up inside minutes, and guarantee your connection’s safety and privateness. 

This information will stroll you thru every part you want to learn about organising and utilizing a VPN.

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

How Does a VPN Help You?

VPNs might help you with the next issues:

  1. Stay Anonymous Online (Always Choose a VPN With a No-Logs Policy)

A VPN with a strict no-logs coverage doesn’t gather any knowledge once you’re related to a VPN server. Once you disconnect, it’s nearly as should you had been by no means there. 

You ought to choose a VPN based mostly outdoors the Fourteen Eyes nations. These international locations require firms working inside their territory to monitor and share person exercise when essential for nationwide safety.

Major VPNs are often headquartered in international locations with no knowledge retention legal guidelines, just like the British Virgin Islands and Panama.

  1. Encrypt Your Internet Traffic

A 2021 FTC report revealed that many ISPs (Internet Service Providers) will be at the least as privacy-intrusive as advert platforms. Many ISPs have entry to your unencrypted exercise and can hint that exercise again to you.

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

It’s not simply your ISP that may entry a person’s unencrypted site visitors. For occasion, when utilizing public WiFi, your knowledge could also be susceptible to man-in-the-middle assaults. If you want to switch delicate paperwork and use on-line banking utilizing a public community at a cafe, it’s best to use a VPN.

VPNs encrypt your site visitors, so anybody who tries to entry your on-line exercise gained’t give you the option to decrypt the information even when they get their fingers on it.

  1. Access Geo-Blocked Websites or Bypass Censorship

Say you’re occurring a journey to the Maldives. You gained’t have access to Netflix U.S. or HBO Max once you get there. Opening Netflix will take you to the Maldives library robotically. You can’t binge-watch your favourite Netflix U.S. present from the Maldives, except you employ a VPN.

You can do that by connecting to a U.S.-based VPN server. This will show you how to purchase a U.S. IP deal with. When you log into Netflix with a U.S. IP deal with, the web site will assume you’re bodily positioned within the U.S. and allow you to entry the U.S. library. You’ll additionally give you the option to entry platforms like HBO Max which are solely obtainable within the U.S. from completely different international locations utilizing a VPN.

You may also use VPNs to bypass authorities censorship. For occasion, should you’re touring to China however want to entry Facebook, you’ll want to bypass China’s Great Firewall utilizing a VPN.

However, not all VPNs can bypass geoblocks or bypass censorship. You’ll want a VPN that may disguise the truth that your IP comes from a VPN server.

How to Set Up a VPN

Setting up a VPN is a straightforward three-step course of and doesn’t require technical expertise. If you need assistance selecting a VPN, we focus on that within the subsequent part. We’ll use ExpressVPN to illustrate the setup course of.

  1. Sign up for ExpressVPN from its website.
How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide
  1. Download the ExpressVPN app in your gadget and set up it. It’s obtainable for all main working programs, together with Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. If you’re on an iPhone/iPad or Android gadget, you’ll be able to obtain the VPN app from the Play Store or the App Store.
How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide
  1. Launch ExpressVPN and press the facility button to join to a server. It will robotically join with the very best server location, however you can too select one your self from the record.
How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

You may also configure ExpressVPN based mostly in your choice by deciding on the hamburger icon on the top-left and deciding on Options. Most VPN settings are both self-explanatory or too superior for a typical person’s necessities, however let’s speak in regards to the essential ones:

  • Network Lock: ExpressVPN calls its kill switch Network Lock. You’d need to hold this enabled so the app can cease all web site visitors if the VPN connection drops abruptly. This will make sure you by no means entry the web with an unencrypted connection unexpectedly.
How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide
  • Split tunneling: This characteristic enables you to use a VPN connection for particular apps whereas different apps proceed utilizing the unencrypted connection. ExpressVPN enables you to create an allowlist (apps that may use the VPN connection) or a blocklist (apps that may’t use the VPN connection).
How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

Once you’ve configured the VPN, you’ll be able to join to a VPN server and entry web sites with out worrying about safety and privateness.

3 Best VPNs (Free Alternative Included)

There are numerous VPN suppliers, however you’ll need to select a dependable service to guarantee your on-line safety and privateness. We’ve picked the three greatest VPN companies. Two of them had been chosen based mostly on their characteristic portfolio and recognition. The third choice is a free VPN for many who aren’t trying to spend on a VPN simply but. All listed VPNs have a no-logs coverage (they don’t observe your exercise).

  1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is at the moment the very best VPN obtainable. It gives top-notch safety by means of VPN protocols like OpenVPN, and its proprietary Lightway protocol, mixed with AES-256 encryption. 

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

It bypasses geoblocks on nearly all streaming companies, together with Netflix. Since ExpressVPN gives limitless bandwidth and wonderful connection speeds, you’ll be able to take pleasure in buffer-free streaming in your favourite streaming platforms. 

Note that a VPN connection will decelerate your speeds at the least marginally generally as a result of your site visitors will want to journey by means of an middleman server (the VPN server). VPNs could enhance your pace in some instances the place the ISP has been throttling speeds. You can check speeds utilizing the built-in pace check on ExpressVPN.

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

ExpressVPN checks all of the packing containers—it’s quick, safe, and dependable. The solely draw back is that it’s costly. If you’re open to spending further for a premium service, ExpressVPN could be the best VPN for you. There’s no trial, however you should utilize the 30-day money-back assure to declare a full refund should you don’t like ExpressVPN after utilizing it for a few days.

  1. NordVPN

NordVPN comes very shut to ExpressVPN in a number of facets. It’s nearly as quick, secures your web connection, and gives all of the bells and whistles you’ll discover on ExpressVPN, like cut up tunneling.

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

The VPN works on all main working programs and permits six simultaneous connections (in contrast to 5 on ExpressVPN). However, you’ll be able to set up each VPNs on a router. This permits utilizing the VPN for any variety of units so long as they’re related to that router.

NordVPN goes a step additional with its safety than ExpressVPN. It has multihop servers that route your site visitors by means of a number of servers as a substitute of 1, including one other layer of safety. It additionally has a characteristic known as CyberSec, which capabilities as an antivirus by defending you in opposition to malware on malicious websites and blocking adverts.

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

The better part? NordVPN prices half of ExpressVPN and gives a 30-day money-back assure too. 

If you’re in search of a good cheaper different, contemplate Surfshark or CyberGhost. Don’t need a paid VPN? Check the subsequent supplier. 

  1. Windscribe

The greatest VPN companies are the paid ones. While there are tons of free VPN companies, most of them are unreliable and insecure, besides a few like Windscribe and Tunnelbear.

Windscribe secures your connection simply in addition to paid VPNs. If you need a free VPN to safe your connection from hackers when utilizing a public WiFi community or hotspots, Windscribe will do this without cost.

You can set up Windscribe in your laptop or a cell gadget. It additionally has a browser extension for all widespread browsers, together with Chrome. 

How to Set Up and Use a VPN: A Beginner’s Guide

Unlike different VPNs, Windscribe’s browser extension isn’t simply a distant management for the desktop app. It gives further goodies like R.O.B.E.R.T., a characteristic that permits blocking adverts and malicious web sites.

Windscribe is kind of simply the very best free VPN obtainable, however the free model comes with limitations. The free model has a 10GB month-to-month knowledge cap. Plus, the speeds are mediocre at greatest, and you’ll expertise occasional buffering when streaming in HD.

Ready to Use a VPN?

VPNs supply safety and privateness, so that you by no means have to fear about somebody stealing your knowledge or tracing any on-line exercise again to you. VPN apps are often obtainable for all main working programs and units, whether or not you employ Microsoft Windows, Android, or an Apple gadget. However, do you know there’s additionally a browser with a free built-in VPN and a built-in VPN service on Windows?