5 Best VPNs for eMule that work in 2017

Stephen Cooper

Stephen Cooper

August 3, 2017

What is eMule?

eMule is a peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing client. Unlike uTorrent, BitTorrent, and Vuze, eMule doesn’t use the BitTorrent protocol. Instead, its main file sharing method is the eD2k protocol. A secondary system, Kad, is also available. Like BitTorrent, eD2k splits up files into segments. Each peer can download different sections from different seeders simultaneously. Also, as with BitTorrent, a client is usually engaged in other downloads and uploads at the same time. As soon as a segment is downloaded, it becomes available for others seeking that file. The client does not wait for the complete file to be downloaded before making stored segments available to others.

eMule has about four million users. They share around four billion files between them. This makes the client attractive, because peers delete many rare files on the BitTorrent network once they get a little old.

Unfortunately, if you want to use eMule you face the problem that downloading copyrighted material without paying is illegal. Thus you risk prosecution by using the system. You’re also likely to experience problems with your Internet Service Provider (ISP) if it finds out what you’re doing. Many ISPs expel customers who use P2P networks. If that happens to you, they won’t give you any refund for unused service payments, nor will you get your deposit back.

Even laid back ISPs make life difficult for eMule users. You’ll find that your ISP intentionally slows down your connection, so that it can reduce the cost of dealing with a high-volume user like you.

If you want hassle-free use of eMule, you need to disguise your activities. The easiest way to achieve that privacy is to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

You can read more about VPNs and how they assist P2P downloading later in this article. First, let’s take a look at the five best VPNs for eMule.

Quick Links to our 5 best VPNs for eMule

  1. Buffered
  2. IPVanish
  3. ExpressVPN
  4. VPNArea
  5. AirVPN

Best VPNs for eMule: Summary

BestVPN Editor's Choice Award
Buffered Homepage
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Allowance of five simultaneous connections
  • P2P allowed
  • Great speeds
  • No logs
  • A little pricey

Buffered is a great choice for those who want to download files with eMule. The company states clearly on its website that it is fine with people using its service for P2P downloads. eMule can be a little difficult to set up. It doesn't just work by itself the first time you open it. Instead, you have to select a port and fiddle about with the settings. The Buffered customer support team is very knowledgeable about P2P clients and will be able to help you get eMule running properly. This service has excellent speeds, which will help your downloads run faster. The company has a firm no logs policy to protect your identity.

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#2 Best VPN for eMule: IPVanish

IPVanish Homepage
  • Seven-day money-back guarantee
  • Very fast speeds
  • Servers in 60 countries
  • Allowance of five simultaneous connections
  • No logs
  • Based in the US

IPVanish has a very fast network. The company created its infrastructure specifically for a VPN service, so everything is fully optimized and run in-house. There are no third party companies contracted to run this service, which means there's no risk of another company becoming susceptible to government or legal pressure to monitor customer activities. IPVanish is adamant that it keeps no logs. However, the company is based in the United States, which could make it vulnerable to prosecution or legal action from copyright holders.

#3 Best VPN for eMule: ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN Homepage
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  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • No logs
  • Fast speeds
  • Servers in 94 countries
  • Very good customer support
  • A bit pricey - but worth it!

ExpressVPN offers just about the best VPN service around at the moment. The only reason that this excellent VPN is not the number one in our list of eMule VPNs is because it is expensive. Another downer is that this service offers the least simultaneous connections of all of our eMule VPN top picks. The company has a fast network and is fine about customers joining P2P networks. The customer support team can be reached online at almost any hour of the day and is very competent at solving customers' problems. This company is based in the British Virgin Islands, where there is no requirement for data retention.

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#4 Best VPN for eMule: VPNArea

VPNArea Homepage
  • Seven-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 60 countries
  • Allowance of six simultaneous connections
  • HQ in Switzerland, operating base in Bulgaria
  • No logs
  • Customer support not manned 24/7

VPNArea is another good choice for downloading with P2P networks. It is headquartered in Switzerland, where it is not illegal to download copyright material without paying if it is for personal viewing. The actual operating center of the company is in Bulgaria. Neither Switzerland nor Bulgaria demands that VPNs keep activity logs and VPNArea deletes all session information as soon as the customer closes the connection. You get an allowance of six simultaneous connections with this service. You can also load the VPN onto a router to cover all the internet-enabled devices in your home. A router install counts as just one connection, which leaves you five spare. You could use this allowance to share an account with friends and reduce the cost of running the VPN.

#5 Best VPN for eMule: AirVPN

AirVPN Homepage
  • No logs
  • Kill switch
  • IP leak protection
  • Strong security
  • Port forwarding
  • Allows just three simultaneous connections
  • Relatively small server network

You may have problems getting eMule to work properly if you are not a technical wiz. Our AirVPN review puts this service in the same league. This VPN is very good at hiding your identity, but it's a little complicated to set up. This service has a flexible capability for port forwarding, which is a method you can use to bypass your firewall if it blocks P2P connections. The company offers a very short, three-day subscription period for just €1, which is its version of a trial period. You can be guaranteed complete discretion from this VPN service because it supports P2P downloading and doesn't keep activity logs.

Your ISP and eMule

In the UK and North America, ISPs try to block access to P2P sources. In the case of users of the Bit Torrent protocol, the fact that the source of .torrent files can be put on a blacklist, preventing customers from getting to the site that distributes torrents, makes the task easy for ISPs. eMule is a little different because it doesn’t include well known source libraries. The eMule client has its own search engine built into it, so no one needs to go and look for a site like The Pirate Bay.

If your ISP detects your P2P activities, it is obliged to warn you. It may even notify copyright holder groups. In the UK, these groups have been known to send speculative invoices to try to force downloaders to pay up. They can get this information because the eMule client’s communications with other peers include the names of the files you download. As those file names are usually very descriptive, they give the game away on what the contents of the file are.

eMule VPN

All of your internet traffic has to pass through your ISP. Each data exchange travels in a structure called a packet. The front of the packet is called the header. It includes information about the source and destination of the data. Routers need to read this information. However, this header data also enables ISPs to decide to not pass on packets that are destined for blacklisted addresses. The source address in the packet makes it possible for anyone who seizes connection logs from a peer, or even from eMule, to trace the data exchanges back to your computer. ISPs have to keep records of user activities for six months and make them available to anyone with a court order.

A Virtual Private Network encrypts all of the data packet, including the header. Routers can’t forward data across the internet if they can’t read the destination address in the headers of packets. Therefore, the VPN client packages that encrypted packet inside another packet. Before you turn on the service, you pick a server from the VPN’s list of available locations. The client program on your computer then addresses all of your connections to the server you selected.

No one can tell the true destination of data packets as they pass through the ISP and routers on the way to the VPN server. When the packets arrive at the server, a program there strips off the outer layer, decrypts the inner packet and then puts a temporary source address in the header. The server or peer that receives that altered packet will reply to the VPN server. When the VPN server gets a segment of the file you are downloading, it encrypts it, repackages it, and then sends it back to your computer. The client software of the VPN unbundles the packets and passes the data they contain to the eMule application.

eMule VPN Privacy

As your ISP can’t see where your data packets are going to or coming from when you use a VPN, its activity logs can’t inform the authorities or copyright lawyers of your activities. The search for someone to sue for illegal downloading should stop there. However, prosecutors have another avenue to get to downloaders. Although your connections don’t have any P2P addresses on them, they do have the VPN server’s address. With legal threats, lawyers could force the VPN company to reveal which files you downloaded.

This is why VPN companies make such a big point about their lack of logs. Some countries in the world have legal requirements that force all digital services providers to keep records of their customers’ activities. There aren’t many VPN companies based in those countries and none of our recommended VPNs for eMule are legally obliged to keep activity logs.

Best eMule VPNs: Conclusion

Copyright owners are becoming increasingly strident about stamping out P2P systems, such as eMule. Unfortunately, governments and ISPs are only too happy to help in this campaign. You need to protect your activities from detection. The best way to protect your identity on the web is to use a good quality VPN.

It can take a long time to research all the VPN services on the market today. That’s why we put together this list of our recommendations for eMule VPNs. Not every VPN in the world will give you sufficient protection, but any of the VPNs on our list will protect you when you use eMule.

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