We live in a time where online privacy is a major topic discussed by both experts and users alike. There is a lot of debate on which VPN is truly the best, and TorGuard VPN is a title that pops up rather frequently.
In this TorGuard VPN review, I’ll try to discover whether this program is truly a good one. Security, features, speed, pricing, and streaming will be my major concerns when evaluating this Virtual Private Network.
|Logs:||No activity logs|
|Support:||Knowledge base, email, tickets|
TorGuard pros & cons
- Strong security features
- IPv6 leak prevention
- WireGuard tunneling protocol
- Lots of DNS options
- Possibility to run scripts
- Good for torrenting
- Stealth proxy
- Free trial version
- Good speeds
- Android-only split tunneling
- Prone to freezes
- Might struggle to connect
- Unintuitive user interface
- Doesn’t unblock Netflix
TorGuard speed performance
Using a VPN automatically means that your internet speed will decrease. This is unavoidable, as a VPN adds a few extra steps to your connection. Thankfully, with some VPNs, you won’t even feel the difference if your internet is pretty fast in the first place.
Baseline: 1 ms/300 Mbps download/300 Mbps upload
|Location||Wireguard Latency (ms)||Wireguard Download Speed (Mbps)||Wireguard Upload Speed (Mbps)|
|US (NY)||Failed to connect||Failed to connect||Failed to connect|
Thanks to the WireGuard and OpenVPN UDP protocols, TorGuard VPN offers quite good speeds. These are especially fast with WireGuard, as you can see from the table above.
The Swiss server was the fastest one, as it made my download speed drop by only 2.6%, surpassing most of the other VPNs on the market. During the same test, the biggest drop in download speed (49%) occurred with the Japanese server, which is very far from my country.
However, I experienced certain issues when trying to connect with TorGuard VPN, especially when using tunneling protocols aside from WireGuard. For a while, the VPN struggled to connect at all, showcasing a message that told me to check my firewall settings. I’ve never had such a problem with other VPNs, and this inconvenience certainly takes away some points from TorGuard VPN.
Streaming performance: does TorGuard work with Netflix?
Many VPN users get caught up in the never-ending race between Virtual Private Networks and streaming sites, as Netflix and other similar pages are constantly blocking VPNs, while the latter try searching for loopholes to bypass the geo-restrictions.
As a result, you won’t experience much success with TorGuard VPN and Netflix. When I tried accessing the US server, the VPN failed to unlock the American content (however, the page itself didn’t show any errors).
TorGuard also didn’t unblock DAZN, BBC iPlayer, and Disney+. On the other hand, it managed to access the geo-blocked content of Youtube.
If you’re determined to try using TorGuard for streaming, you can buy a dedicated IP address, which may have a better chance to bypass restrictions.
Is TorGuard safe and good for torrenting?
All the servers of TorGuard VPN support P2P file sharing, including torrenting. It’s possible to torrent via the application itself or the SOCKS5 proxy. TorGuard VPN works with torrenting apps like uTorrent and Vuze.
I tested a few servers myself and they worked. The download speed didn’t seem to be capped in any way but it varied a lot, randomly going from 10MB/s to 6MB/s. Despite this, these were the fastest torrenting speeds any VPN has offered me. It seems that TorGuard VPN truly deserves the “Tor” part of its name.
TorGuard VPN is one of the most feature-rich VPNs I’ve seen, offering lots of options for advanced users. Of course, it also has such common features as auto-login and auto-connect. However, its strength lies in the rarer ones.
The split tunneling feature is available only on the Android app and is called Restricted Apps. You might find it useful when you don’t want all the applications on your phone to connect to the internet through the VPN, for example, banking apps.
Simply open the feature and you’ll get a list of all the applications installed on your smartphone. Put the checkmarks on the ones that you want to exclude from the VPN connection.
All the apps of TorGuard VPN offer a feature called Scripts. Even though it sounds intimidating to a beginner, an advanced user can actually find it pretty useful.
In short, the Scripts tab lets you customize your VPN connection. You can write your own scripts (or find a few examples on TorGuard’s website) and make the app run them before connecting, after connecting, or after disconnecting from the VPN.
For example, you can make the app automatically open a particular website, close a program, or map a network drive.
Under the Network tab, you can manage your DNS options. This feature might come in handy when a website blocks the DNS of your VPN provider. In that case, you can select an alternative DNS to bypass these restrictions. You can choose from a lot of different options, including Level3, Google, OpenDNS, and even Cloudflare, which might work in China.
Is TorGuard secure?
TorGuard VPN is a secure service that makes a huge effort to make your browsing as private as possible. This includes military-grade encryption, a selection of the best tunneling protocols (like WireGuard), WebRTC and IPv6 leak prevention, and a kill switch.
Like the majority of top VPNs on the market, TorGuard VPN uses AES-256 encryption by default. Brute-forcing it using current technology would take millions (or even billions) of years, which makes AES-256 trusted by major organizations, governments, and the military.
However, when using the OpenVPN tunneling protocol, you have the choice to change the cipher to AES-128. Even though it seems like a much weaker choice at first glance, it’s also a great form of encryption that has yet to suffer a breach.
As AES-256 takes a lot of processing power (up to 40% more than AES-128), you might want to use the 128-bit version on weaker devices that have difficulty handling AES-256.
It’s also possible to pick the Blowfish encryption (which might be a bit faster than AES) or disable encryption entirely. However, these options are no longer available on the app itself – you can only do this via manual configuration.
Finally, TorGuard VPN uses the super secure SHA-512 algorithm for authentication.
When it comes to the selection of tunneling protocols, TorGuard VPN is a true winner, especially as all of its major apps support WireGuard. However, there’s no shortage of other protocols as well.
WireGuard. Available from October 2020 on TorGuard’s Windows, Android, iOS, macOS, and Linux applications, this tunneling protocol is a fan-favorite thanks to its incredible speed (for a VPN, at least) and high level of security.
OpenVPN UDP/TCP. Extremely secure and reliable, this tunneling protocol has been the #1 choice of most VPN services for many years. Its TCP version is considered the more stable one, while UDP is a bit faster. You can also choose the encryption type (AES-128 or AES-256) with OpenVPN on any TorGuard app.
OpenConnect. Even though this open-source protocol is faster than OpenVPN, it is a bit less secure.
In addition to the tunneling protocols mentioned above, TorGuard VPN also supports PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, and IKEv2/IPSec. However, you won’t find these options on any of the apps – you need to set them up manually, which means that only advanced users will be able to take advantage of them.
There’s also the Stealth VPN protocol, which disguises TorGuard’s traffic as regular internet traffic. It may come in handy when you encounter a firewall that blocks VPN protocols. It’s available on port 4443 using OpenVPN.
TorGuard VPN is based in Florida, US, which isn’t the most privacy-friendly country as it belongs to the 5-Eyes Alliance.
Luckily, TorGuard VPN swears not to collect any user activity logs. In other words, your browsing activity won’t be tracked (or stored) in any way or form.
However, TorGuard collects information like payment details, anonymized Google Analytics data, Apache Webserver logs, email addresses, and any contact information received via live chat.
TorGuard has an integrated kill switch that shuts down the internet connection if your VPN crashes for an unexpected reason.
In addition, the VPN offers a feature called App Kill. It is highly customizable: you can choose the applications that you want to be automatically closed in case of an accidental loss of connection to the VPN server.
After choosing the programs, you can click the Test button to check whether this feature really shuts down the selected applications.
Servers and server locations
TorGuard VPN boasts 3,000+ servers in 50+ countries, which are decent numbers even for the top end of the VPN market. Also, each of these servers supports torrenting and the WireGuard protocol.
However, even though the number of TorGuard’s servers is impressive, some regions of the world lack coverage. Africa is a prominent example – the only country the VPN offers is South Africa.
|Region||Number of countries|
|Europe||27 countries (including Russia)|
|Asia Pacific||9 countries|
|Africa, India, and the Middle East||4 countries|
Right now, the vast majority of TorGuard’s servers are physical. You can check whether the server of your choice is physical or virtual on the official site of TorGuard.
What I don’t really like about the TorGuard app is the lack of a map, which is usually present with other VPN programs. You only have the choice to pick a server from a list, which fails to convey the distribution of servers across the world.
Plans & pricing
No matter which TorGuard VPN subscription plan you buy, you’ll get the same bunch of features like 3,000+ servers in 50+ countries, 8 simultaneous connections, and unlimited speeds and bandwidth.
Your choice of plan solely depends on how long you want to have TorGuard on your computer.
Personally, I always suggest users try out the one-month subscription to see how the VPN works on their device in terms of speed, streaming experience, and other factors.
After that, if everything works as intended, you can think of committing to a long-term plan that will help you save quite a bit of money.
So, if you want TorGuard on your computer for three months, you can invest in the quarterly plan that will cost you $19.99 in total, which results in $6.66 a month instead of the regular $9.99.
Alternatively, you can try the semi-annual plan for $29.99, or $4.99 a month. Interestingly, the yearly plan doesn’t reduce the cost more, resulting in $59.99 a year, or the same $4.99 a month. However, it would be nice to get a bigger discount when you commit to a service for a whole year.
TorGuard also offers a 7-day money-back guarantee, which is significantly shorter than the 30-day money-back guarantee of VPNs like NordVPN and Surfshark.
Is there a free version?
While trying out a VPN for free is always nice, TorGuard has one of the most convoluted ways of getting a trial version.
In short, to try TorGuard free for seven days, you have to buy a subscription to another VPN first. That’s because you need to send a copy of your last bill to a support agent at [email protected]. After your bill is approved, you get the chance to use the full version of TorGuard VPN for seven days.
However, it doesn’t end here. If you happen to enjoy TorGuard and decide that your old VPN falls flat in comparison, you can send proof of its cancellation to the customer support team of TorGuard in exchange for a free 30-day trial of the program.
Interface and ease of use
All of TorGuard’s apps are almost identical in terms of design, which is rather minimalistic. This is unfortunate, because they aren’t really user friendly, especially if the person trying to use the VPN is a novice in the world of Virtual Private Networks.
For example, as mentioned before in this TorGuard VPN review, there is no map that would help you select a country more intuitively. Also, the settings section looks like it was created by an IT professional with no regard for user experience – the advanced and basic settings are scrambled together, and many beginners will find themselves questioning the purpose of the majority of options.
On the other hand, the installation process was smooth, and the main window of the application is quite easy to navigate.
You won’t find lots of differences between the Windows, Mac, and Linux applications of TorGuard VPN. That’s right – even the Linux operating system got a dedicated app, which is quite rare: usually, Linux VPNs function through the Command Line Interface (CLI).
All of the desktop applications of TorGuard offer WireGuard, OpenVPN (UDP/TCP), and OpenConnect tunneling protocols. However, I had to install the WireGuard package to my Linux app manually, as it was not included in the initial download.
The desktop apps also include things like the kill switch, App Kill, the script options, and the possibility to connect through a proxy.
When not connected to TorGuard VPN, I kept getting annoying notifications every minute or two, which didn’t stop for about half an hour. I had to disable all the notifications from TorGuard to end this notification hell.
There’s one more thing to keep a note of. When you close the app, it disconnects you from the server, which means that you should minimize the app instead of closing it if you want to continue using the VPN server.
TorGuard mobile apps
Even though the iOS and Android apps of TorGuard look the same, they have a few differences. For example, the Android app offers OpenVPN and Wireguard, while the iOS app lets you use IKEv2/IPSec, OpenVPN, but no WireGuard.
Also, the Android version is the only one to offer the split tunneling feature. However, this app can be a bit buggy: when trying to log in, the program froze when I accidentally mistyped the password and I had to restart it. In addition, when trying to use OpenVPN, the connection was slower than with the Windows app.
The 24/7 support option on TorGuard’s site is a bit misleading. Usually, seeing the numbers “24/7” implies the existence of a live chat. However, TorGuard doesn’t have this option.
Instead, you can try creating a ticket (which requires registration with your TorGuard VPN credentials). I had some issues with this, as the page kept reloading the login screen even after clicking the Submit button.
However, I had no problems when contacting them via email ([email protected]), which didn’t require me to submit my credentials.
Despite not having instant customer support, they do reply on the weekend: I wrote them an email with a question Saturday evening and got a reply Sunday morning. Also, they replied to my second question in two minutes, which is really impressive. The answers I got were great – I received all the information I needed. Also, the agent was very polite.
In case you want to solve all the problems yourself, you can also visit TorGuard’s support center that includes a FAQ section, a knowledge base, and the Community Forum that gets a few new threads every day.
Is TorGuard good, and should I get it?
Despite its flaws, TorGuard is not the worst Virtual Private Network I’ve tested.
Its vast selection of features, good encryption options, and amazing torrenting speeds make it a good choice for anyone who wants to have a decent VPN for security and anonymity.
However, none of us is perfect, and TorGuard VPN is no exception.
In its entirety, it’s quite a buggy program that’s prone to freezes and connection problems. On top of that, it won’t probably unblock any of the Netflix libraries you want to access. And even though TorGuard’s customer support is great, it won’t be able to help you if the app is acting out too much.
Also, none of the TorGuard applications are as intuitive as they could be, appealing to much more technologically-advanced people than the average user.
In conclusion, TorGuard has great potential – but it needs a lot of polishing before becoming a VPN you’d recommend to your mom.
More on VPN providers from CyberNews:
TorGuard vs. NordVPN: we’ve found the winner!
Atlas VPN review: a mobile-focused VPN service great for beginners
PrivateVPN review: a hidden VPN gem?
Is TorGuard VPN free?
While TorGuard doesn’t have an indefinite free version, it offers a 7-day trial. To get it, you have to send them the last bill of your current VPN at [email protected]
Does TorGuard work with Netflix?
No. TorGuard VPN usually fails to unblock Netflix and other streaming services. However, you might have some luck with a dedicated IP.
Does TorGuard have a kill switch?
Yes, TorGuard VPN has an integrated kill switch. You can even select the apps you want to automatically close if the VPN suddenly disconnects.