The best VPN for Windows: Expert tested and reviewed

The best VPN for Windows: Expert tested and reviewed

What’s the finest Home windows VPN in 2024?

ZDNET’s prime choose for a Home windows VPN in 2024 is NordVPN. Resulting from latest upgrades to its server community and a rise within the variety of simultaneous connections you may have beneath one account, NordVPN now combines wonderful pace, an expansive server selection, and safety, making it an important possibility at $3.69/month.

Once you connect with Wi-Fi in an airport, lodge, college, or espresso store, you don’t need your information working over a public hotspot that could possibly be corrupted in any of a thousand other ways. That’s the reason you will need to know your VPN answer will be trusted.

ZDNET has extensively examined VPN software program for years. We have carried out hands-on pace assessments, checked server availability and connection stability, and examined a very powerful points of VPN shoppers together with user-friendliness, safety, and streaming service entry.

With that in thoughts, these are our suggestions for the perfect VPNs for Home windows in 2024. Not solely have these all been put to the check in varied evaluations, however we’ve thought of how they carry out on Home windows machines, their value factors, and the way every vendor approaches safety.

One of the best VPNs for Home windows in 2024

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NordVPN

Greatest VPN for Home windows general

NordVPN has distinguished itself as one of many quickest VPNs in the marketplace at present. 

It additionally has strong capabilities past a primary VPN service. Its P2P sharing performance makes it a superb VPN for torrenting. It additionally has choices for a devoted IP handle, double VPN, and Onion over VPN. You should buy add-on companies, together with a password supervisor and encrypted cloud storage, and it is one of many few VPN suppliers providing id theft and cyber extortion protection. 

Additionally: NordVPN evaluate

Past Home windows, NordVPN helps all the most well-liked platforms, making it a superb possibility for securing your varied gadgets. Moreover, the corporate lately elevated the variety of simultaneous gadgets out there beneath one account to 10 gadgets, and its server community has expanded to 111 nations, making NordVPN’s community one of the expansive. 

The person interface works nicely on the Home windows OS, and through testing, we discovered that connections had been quick and secure. In case you have hassle organising the VPN, dwell chat is obtainable, and clients report they recognize the assist. 

Plans start at $3.69/month with three months of free entry added to two-year plans. With a 30-day money-back assure, you may check it out your self for a month and get a full refund if it does not be just right for you.

NordVPN specs: Home windows assist: Home windows 7 or larger | Simultaneous connections: 10 | Kill change: Sure | Platforms: Home windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, Android TV, Chrome, Firefox | Logging: None, besides billing information | International locations: 111 | Cash-back assure: 30 day

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ExpressVPN

Greatest Home windows VPN for pace

ExpressVPN has server areas in 105 nations, which is a significantly bigger community than lots of the different prime VPN suppliers. 

In ZDNET’s pace assessments, we discovered that ExpressVPN for Home windows got here in simply after NordVPN in general efficiency, and the efficiency was predictably according to servers positioned worldwide.

ExpressVPN is not one of the broadly used VPN suppliers for no purpose. It helps a variety of platforms and protocols and is straightforward to arrange and use on nearly any gadget, together with the Home windows platform. 

Additionally: ExpressVPN evaluate

ExpressVPN is up there with NordVPN when it comes to its person interface, and similar to its competitor, there’s a kill change that protects your privateness ought to your connection instantly drop. It is one of many quickest VPNs, if not the quickest, and it may need taken the highest spot on this record if it wasn’t for the upper value level. Nonetheless, clients say this is a superb VPN with a improbable buyer assist group. 

One of the best deal at current is for a one-year ExpressVPN plan is $6.67/month with three months of free entry. Ignore the promotional materials, nonetheless, as this pricing has been constant for a substantial period of time. 

ExpressVPN specs: Home windows assist: Home windows 7 or larger | Simultaneous connections: 8 | Kill change: Sure | Platforms: Home windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, and extra | Logging: No searching logs, some connection logs | International locations: 105 | Cash-back assure: 30 days

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Surfshark VPN

Greatest price range Home windows VPN

Surfshark is among the most inexpensive VPNs in the marketplace, offering a strong expertise for a spread of budgets. 

Along with nice VPN performance supported by the Wireguard protocol, it affords a transparent, enticing person interface and limitless connections. I significantly just like the pause perform, which lets you cease the VPN for 5 minutes, an hour, or extra — a helpful characteristic if you should entry a service native to you, for instance. 

Though obtain speeds had been strong in our testing, we did discover that they tended to be barely slower than some rivals, and connection occasions had been a bit slower as nicely. Clients report Surfshark is a reliable VPN service with an important assist group, though some customers have reported billing points. 

Additionally: Surfshark VPN evaluate

Plans begin at solely $2.19/month on two-year plans. It’s also possible to go for one-year or month-to-month choices and extra tiers that embrace options similar to antivirus safety and Incogni information removing.

Surfshark VPN specs: Home windows assist: Home windows 7 or larger | Simultaneous connections: Limitless | Kill change: Sure | Platforms: Home windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, Hearth TV, Firefox, Chrome | Logging: None, besides billing information | International locations: 100 | Cash-back assure: 30 days

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Proton VPN

Greatest Home windows VPN for safety

Proton VPN is among the finest VPN options on the market for the privacy-conscious.

Provided by the identical builders behind ProtonMail, Proton VPN locations safety and privateness on the coronary heart of its operations and is protected by Swiss privateness legal guidelines. Additionally it is open supply, which permits anybody to evaluate and audit its code, and the agency’s privateness coverage is evident and clear. A warrant canary can also be working.  

Additionally: Proton VPN evaluate

Speeds are cheap, though they’re generally slower than different VPN servers. Many purchasers say they like this speedy and safe service, though there are complaints relating to the free service tier (take that how you’ll).

Concerning pricing, Proton VPN is a mid-tier possibility at $4.49/month on a two-year contract. One-year subscriptions price $4.99/month, whereas a month of entry is obtainable for $9.99. A free VPN can also be on provide, though as it’s possible you’ll count on, the plan is restricted. 

Proton VPN specs: Home windows assist: Home windows 7 or larger | Simultaneous connections: 10 | Kill change: Sure | Platforms: Home windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, Hearth TV, Firefox, Chrome, Android TV | Logging: None, besides billing information | International locations: 91 | Cash-back assure: 30 days

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IPVanish VPN

Greatest Home windows VPN for limitless connections

IPVanish is a strong, extremely versatile product with a helpful person interface and quick connection occasions. It is appropriate with Home windows 7 and above; nonetheless, you may need to make use of the VPN’s legacy app for older variations of the working system.

Home windows customers will recognize how extremely configurable IPVanish is. Its app makes selecting the optimum server on your VPN connection a breeze by offering ping occasions and server load data. As a bonus, this VPN is a superb selection for Kodi customers. 

Whereas connection occasions had been wonderful with IPVanish, the switch pace generally lagged behind the opposite rivals, and the person interface will not attraction to everybody. Regardless of this, clients say they just like the VPN’s value level and report an general constructive expertise, with many noting that streaming companies work nicely. 

Additionally: IPVanish evaluate

At current, you may join a two-year plan at $2.19/month, with three months free. Alternatively, a yearly plan will set you again $2.79/month, or a month of entry will price you $10.99.

IPVanish VPN specs: Home windows assist: Home windows 7 and up | Simultaneous connections: Limitless | Kill change: Sure | Platforms: Home windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, Hearth TV, Android TV, and Kodi | Logging: None, besides billing information | Places: 75 | Cash-back assure: 30 days

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Greatest VPN for Home windows

Value

Simultaneous connections

Places

NordVPN

$3.69/mo w/2-year plan + 3 free months

10

111

ExpressVPN

$6.67/mo w/1-year plan + 3 free months

8

105

Surfshark

$2.19/mo w/2-year plan

Limitless

100

Proton VPN

$4.49/mo w/2-year plan

10

91

IPVanish VPN

$2.19/mo w/2-year plan + 3 free months

Limitless

75

Observe: The data introduced on this desk is correct as of our final publish date, and costs, rankings, and different particulars might have modified since then.

A Home windows VPN service is a digital personal community answer that encrypts your web site visitors, hides your IP handle, and supplies you with a comparatively nameless and safe connection when you’re on-line. 

With the appropriate VPN, you may browse the web with out being tracked and entry geo-restricted content material and streaming companies when you’re away from house. VPNs should not a silver bullet for safety, however moderately a priceless layer that may defend your delicate information and masks your on-line actions.

Additionally: What’s a VPN and why do you want one?

Easy methods to arrange a VPN on Home windows

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Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Once you’re able to attempt a brand new VPN in your Home windows machine, you’ll first must obtain the service you need out of your VPN supplier’s web site or different official sources.

When you may have downloaded your software program, run by way of the installer. For this instance, I’m putting in IPVanish on a Home windows-based Lenovo laptop computer. You might want to supply permission for the set up software program to complete.

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Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

And that is it! You could then sign up utilizing your VPN account credentials or a tool authorization code. Your VPN will now be lively, and you’ll choose the nation server you need, change any additional settings, and extra.

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Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Many suppliers advisable on this record have been topic to in-depth testing and evaluations by members of our ZDNET group. We have been reviewing VPNs for years, have spoken with their administration and their customers, and have developed a typically favorable impression.

ZDNET does check VPN companies from a number of areas, however we won’t check from all areas. Each house, each neighborhood, each native ISP, and each nation has a distinct infrastructure. 

We analyzed the perfect VPNs for Home windows beneath utilizing the next standards that had been most essential in serving to you make an knowledgeable determination:

  • Efficiency: Our prime VPNs will need to have a minimal stage of efficiency. In spite of everything, there is not any level in utilizing a VPN whereas streaming in case your connection regularly drops or lags, making it insupportable.
  • Simultaneous connections: Many VPNs restrict what number of gadgets you may connect with a service on the similar time. In case you have a telephone, pill, laptop computer, desktop, and presumably even a wise TV you need to connect with a VPN, you’d want a service that enables at the very least 5 or 6 simultaneous connections.
  • Safety: There is not any level utilizing a VPN until its safety protocols and encryption ranges are as much as scratch. We additionally ensured the event group behind every advisable VPN cared about making safety enhancements over time and patching reported bugs.
  • Kill change: A kill change prevents you from having an unprotected connection. It is a vital characteristic for a VPN to have, because it protects by stopping a return to a default Wi-Fi connection ought to your web connection unexpectedly drop.
  • Geoblocks and streaming: We all know VPNs will be key to accessing native content material and companies when you’re away from house. We ensured that our prime suggestions carried out nicely in these elements and are unlikely to decelerate your connection when you are streaming. 
  • Platforms: What programs and gadgets are you able to run the VPN on? Our VPN suggestions, naturally, have to supply easy-to-use and intuitive cell apps. 
  • International locations & servers: In what number of completely different nations does the VPN have servers? This will embrace bodily and digital servers and whether or not or not there are sufficient — at the very least 50 or so — to supply selection.
  • Trial size & value: Every VPN we suggest has a strong money-back assure and plenty of will provide cell customers a seven-day trial. 

For a extra intensive breakdown, try our complete VPN testing methodology web page.

Select this VPN for Home windows

If you need…

NordVPN

One of the best Home windows VPN general. NordVPN combines nice speeds and stability with an costly server community and loads of extra choices to bolster your on-line safety. 

ExpressVPN

A speed-driven VPN. Whereas costly, ExpressVPN has a number of the finest pace check leads to our evaluations and is a strong VPN service with an easy-to-use person interface. 

Surfshark

An inexpensive VPN. Surfshark is not at all times as fast as its rivals, but it surely does provide cheap speeds throughout a good server community and at a value level appropriate for many customers. 

Proton VPN

A security-first VPN. Proton VPN is our solely open supply possibility and its builders closely emphasize safety and person privateness. Its community and pace is what we take into account cheap. 

IPVanish

Limitless connections. IPVanish doesn’t restrict what number of gadgets you may connect with the VPN on the similar time and additionally it is extremely configurable.

If you end up choosing your new Home windows VPN, you must take into account:

  • Compatibility: You will want a VPN that works with the Microsoft Home windows working system. Fortunately, nearly all of VPNs will assist Home windows, one of the well-liked working programs, by default.
  • Value: It’s good to take into account the general price of your new VPN plan. Attempt to make the most of promotions, however ignore countdown timers — they sometimes are simply advertising instruments. Whereas top-notch VPNs can price upwards of $10/month, many can be found for just a few {dollars}. We typically suggest that free VPNs are averted — with a number of exceptions — as they could promote your information.
  • Streaming and geoblocking: For those who intend to make use of your Home windows VPN for streaming content material, be sure that the VPN can accommodate your favourite companies, particularly if they’re positioned in one other location. It may be a cat-and-mouse sport, particularly in case you’re away from house, so it’s price researching whether or not or not your VPN has points with accessing particular streaming companies. Additionally, remember that streaming with a VPN legally is a grey space.
  • Machine connections: Once you’re paying for a Home windows VPN, you may additionally need to use the service throughout a number of gadgets, similar to on an Android smartphone or Mac. We suggest you join a plan with assist for at the very least six gadgets. Fortunately, many paid VPN plans now provide limitless connections and are appropriate with the most well-liked working programs. 
  • Contract size: You additionally must resolve how lengthy you desire a VPN. For those who go for a two-year time period (or longer, with some VPN suppliers providing as much as 5 years) you are inclined to safe the perfect costs, however there are different choices out there. After you’ve got made a range, you sometimes have a 30-day money-back assure. 
  • Apps and extensions: When choosing a VPN, you would possibly need to check out its accompanying cell apps and extensions to make sure you’re getting essentially the most out of your subscription. Some VPNs, for instance, have nice desktop software program however lack within the cell app division, which is probably not as intuitive or straightforward to make use of. 

Regularly requested questions

Sure, and no. Home windows 11 features a VPN shopper, but it surely is not appropriate for the typical person. 

To run your information by way of the web, you want an endpoint. For those who’re connecting to your company VPN server, then you should utilize Home windows’ built-in shopper. However if you wish to join elsewhere, you want a separate VPN service. Microsoft has offered a information for organising the inbuilt VPN shopper, however we suggest that the majority customers ought to go for a standalone VPN which is able to prevent the legwork and can typically offer you extra options.

Sure — so long as you are working iOS or Android in your telephone. All the VPNs we suggest assist a number of simultaneous connections for simply this purpose. When you join a service, you may typically run the VPN shopper a number of gadgets directly, and we want to showcase VPNs that present at the very least 5 simultaneous connections, or extra.

There are a number of distributors who present free VPN plans. You possibly can go for a free VPN for Home windows earlier than signing up for a paid service as this will provide you with the chance to study VPN software program and probably check out a VPN earlier than making the leap. 

Nevertheless, we don’t suggest downloading free VPNs that harvest your data or are ad-supported, as this negates the entire level of utilizing a VPN to enhance your privateness and safety. At current, we propose that you just check out Proton VPN or Windscribe in order for you a free plan — however remember that whereas they’re supported by paid customers, these companies are restricted. 

If the companies we have profiled in our greatest Home windows VPNs record do not fairly do it for you, no drawback. There are a variety of different companies with a stage of safety and efficiency to satisfy your wants.

View at CyberGhostView at Windscribe

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