How to set up a VPN on Windows in 2024


Once online, you become exposed to various cyber threats, such as data and identity theft, DDoS attacks, and more. You might also encounter geo-blocks on streaming platforms, online games, cryptocurrency platforms, or gambling sites if your Windows OS doesn't have a VPN installed.

A VPN will provide a new IP address, allowing you to access most geo-blocked websites worldwide. Also, reputable VPNs come with solid security features, such as powerful encryption, a kill switch, and split tunneling. As a result, you'll receive protection from the most advanced cyberattacks.

In this article, we'll focus on how to set up a VPN on Windows. So, let's dive deeper into the benefits of having a Windows VPN.

How to set up a VPN on Windows

How to set up VPN on Windows
  1. Choose a reliable VPN for Windows and subscribe. We recommend NordVPN, now 69% OFF
  2. Download and install it following the on-screen instructions
  3. Open the VPN app and log in or create an account
  4. Connect to a VPN server in your chosen location
  5. Use your Windows device and enjoy high-end safety

VPNs that are easy to install on Windows

Not all VPNs work with Windows devices. So you need to find a trusted VPN which is compatible with Windows OS. For this reason, we’ve conducted comprehensive testing on some of the market-leading providers to find which VPNs are easy to install on Windows and provide top-notch security. We followed crucial criteria like compatibility with Windows, server network size, security features, number of simultaneous connections, and more.

Based on the tests, here are the three best VPNs for Windows:

How to manually set up a VPN on Windows

To manually set up a VPN for Windows, you don’t have to be a tech expert. The process is relatively easy. Follow the steps below to manually set up and install a VPN on Windows. We’ve used NordVPN as an example.

  1. Download OpenVPN software from their official site at openvpn.net Download OpenVPN
  2. Install the OpenVPN app. After the installation, launch the browser and navigate to https://nordvpn.com/servers/tools Install OpenVPN app
  3. Here, find a server in a country you want to connect to. Filter out servers to see only OpenVPN UDP and TCP protocols
  4. After finding the server you wanted, click on the “Show available protocols” under the server name Show available protocols
  5. Choose which OpenVPN mode you want to use. We recommend UDP for faster speeds, or TCP for more reliability. Click on “Download config” which will download configuration file Download config file
  6. Open the “Downloads” folder and copy the file Copy config file
  7. Then, right-click on the OpenVPN GUI app and choose “Open file locationOpen file location
  8. At the top of the newly opened window, click OpenVPN to go to the parent folder. In this folder, find the configuration folder and go there Config folder
  9. In the folder, paste your copied configuration file. You can close the window and find the OpenVPN GUI option in the taskbar Config file
  10. Right-click on the OpenVPN GUI icon and choose the option “ConnectFind OpenVPN GUI taskbar
  11. You will need to enter your username and password. This can be found in the NordVPN website account tab Username and password
  12. Once you’ve entered the details, click OK Credentials
  13. After a few seconds, you will get connected Connected
  14. You can check on a variety of sites to see if your IP has changed successfully

Benefits of setting up a VPN on Windows

Setting up a VPN on Windows comes with a lot of benefits. The most important one is enhancing your online security and privacy. Still, there are many other reasons to set up a VPN on Windows:

  • Safe browsing on public Wi-Fi. Cybercriminals often target public Wi-Fi networks because of their poor security, making your data vulnerable. VPN hides your traffic from third parties and enhances your privacy.
  • Prevent ISP throttling. ISPs can monitor your online activities, and if they detect excessive data usage, they might throttle your connection and slow down your online experience. A reliable Windows VPN will hide your traffic from the ISP.
  • Access blocked websites. Some websites are geo-restricted to specific regions. Luckily, a VPN helps you bypass geo-blocks by giving you a new IP address.
  • Streaming capabilities. Streaming platforms are often available only in particular countries. A VPN can help you unblock foreign libraries, such as Hulu, Netflix, Disney+, ESPN, Amazon Prime Video, etc.
  • Prevent cyber threats. Cybercriminals constantly aim to access users’ devices and interfere with private data. You can avoid these breaches by installing a reliable Windows VPN with advanced security features, like NordVPN.

Does Windows have a built-in VPN?

Yes, Windows has a built-in VPN. However, it's more like a way to connect to a VPN service via this built-in VPN client. A built-in VPN for Windows 10 or 11 is just a VPN client, so you still have to sign up for a third-party service to work correctly. The built-in VPN is best for connecting your work network.

First, to use and create a VPN connection on Windows, click Start, go to Settings, choose Network & Internet, click VPN, and select Add a VPN connection. Second, install a third-party VPN, such as NordVPN, and enjoy its excellent unblocking capabilities and top-notch security features.

Conclusion

Windows is one of the most targeted OS by cybercriminals. Therefore, it’s crucial to use a VPN to enhance your online security and keep your confidential data safe.

Setting up a VPN on Windows can be easy and quick with a clear guide.

The built-in Windows VPN client can be helpful for installing third-party VPN software, like NordVPN, with incredible security practices and solid unblocking abilities. Its NordLynx protocol uses advanced encryption, and the worldwide server network efficiently bypasses geo-restrictions for more online content.


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