Different VPN services often have subtly different focuses. While some concentrate on attracting subscribers who want to watch streaming TV from other countries, MyVPN.pro focuses more on the privacy angle, highlighting data security, a zero logging policy and interestingly, a platform for “safe” Bittorrent downloads. The latter point is noteworthy as several VPN services do not permit the use of Bittorrent via their servers.
MyVPN.pro works as intended, but certain shortcomings irritate from the start, particularly a total lack of Mac setup instructions online. Unfortunately, performance was rather variable too.
MyVPN.pro is a VPN service that’s a bit different from the norm. Packages are sold in time units of three, 15 and 30 days, and the fact the provider highlights the possibility of using it for Bittorrrent to “protect yourself from being sued” seems to suggest it’s aimed at filesharers specifically.
While the privacy and filesharing aspects may appeal to some users, we didn’t find anything about this service that particularly impressed us, leaving this a service worthy of little more than a brief glance for most.
Packages & Pricing
In common with most VPN service providers, MyVPN.pro offer their service with a choice of commitment packages:
Where MyVPN.pro do differ a little from their competition is that these packages are only offered in durations of three, 15 and 30 days, where most providers offer quarterly and annual options too.
The packages are identical regardless of the subscription length you choose.
Price-wise, based on the 30-day subscription, the cost of $9.95 places MyVPN.pro at the upper end of average for a service of this nature.
As shown above, MyVPN.pro offer a limited free trial, in the form of a “test account” that is freely available by following instructions on the website. However, this account is for PPTP connections only, has its bandwidth restricted, and only connects for five minutes at a time. So while this is a “free trial” of sorts, it is useful for little more than checking you can connect to the provider’s servers.
MyVPN.pro offer very little in the way of customer support options.
As shown above, the contact page simply leads to two email addresses: one for support and another for billing assistance.
Once you have set up an account, the “Contact us” link in the members’ area leads to the same limited contact page. No other options are available, and no mention is made of 24/7 support, or indeed any particular response time.
We sent a test query to the email address provided, and a reply was received in about 12 hours.
Security and Privacy
Pleasingly, MyVPN.pro make it easy to ascertain the protocols and encryption technologies they use:
We learned from the FAQ section that MyVPN.pro offer a choice of PPTP VPN with 128-bit MPPE encryption and L2TP over IPSec with 168-bit 3DES encryption or AES encryption up to 256-bit. The provider recommends using L2TP for improved performance and security.
It’s worth noting that MyVPN.pro don’t offer any OpenVPN options, which are available from several other providers.
Those with privacy concerns will be pleased to know that MyVPN.pro clearly advertise the fact that they keep no logs of their users’ browsing activities.
Registering with MyVPN.pro is a two-step process.
First you register an account, which simply requires you to supply an email address and password:
Once this is done, your account becomes live but “inactive” until you purchase a subscription.
We clicked the “activate” button and ordered a three day subscription in order to review the product.
PayPal was the only payment options available. Selecting it sent us to the PayPal website to complete the transaction. Once we had done this, we were redirected to the MyVPN.pro site, where a “successful payment” message awaited us.
We also received the usual selection of welcome emails and receipts.
Installation and Configuration
Once we’d subscribed, we headed for the setup instructions to find out how to configure the service. Our test machine was a MacBook Pro running OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion).
Unfortunately, we hit a rather major snag at this point: the provider hadn’t yet provided instructions, despite listing Macs under the compatibility section of the FAQs.
We also couldn’t help but notice the glaring typo: “Coming soom.”
We were now faced with a dilemma. As techies, we know how to set up a VPN connection on our Mac, so we decided to switch to the Windows instructions and work our how to get the connection working ourselves. However, at this point we had to give MyVPN.pro a major black mark for failing to complete their online documentation.
The Windows instructions were reasonable and included screenshots, but some images were missing, adding to a gradually building feeling of a low quality service.
We headed to our Mac’s “System Preferences” menus and created a new L2TP VPN connection.
As techies, we found it quite easy to compile the information we needed to set up a connection by flicking between the website members’ area and the Windows instructions – but technophobes with Mac’s would have found themselves lost and with no help.
Regardless, we were able to set up an L2TP connection and connect with no problem.
Having connected using the provider’s default server address, we found we had an IP address based in Holland. The members area also gave us an address for a USA server, which could come in useful for those wishing to access US-specific media content. However, no UK server was available, which was disappointing as many providers offer this.
We changed our settings and had no trouble connecting to the USA server either.
UPDATE: After we finished the review, we received a reply from the support department with text instructions for configuring a Mac. However, these were only for OS X 10.4 and 10.5 (when the current version is 10.8), and only for PPTP connections and not L2TP. This was far from impressive.
Connection Speeds and reliability
We decided to carry out speed tests to MyVPN.pro’s servers in both Holland and the UK. First, however, we needed to benchmark the speed at our test location, so we used Speedtest.net to carry out a test with the VPN disconnected:
As shown in the screenshot above, we achieved a download speed of just under 7Mbps.
We then connected to the server in Holland and ran a test, with rather disappointing results:
While far from the worst we’ve seen, a speed drop of over 2Mbps is still significant and a rather mediocre performance.
Finally, we connected to the USA server and ran our last test:
This result was rather better: a speed drop of just over 1Mbps. We felt it a shame that the server in the Netherlands failed to match this, otherwise we could have finished with a reasonably positive impression of MyVPN.pro’s performance.
MyVPN.pro’s compatibility is revealed in the provider’s FAQ section.
Unfortunately, the list of compatible platforms is as small as we’ve ever seen. Microsoft Windows XP, Vista or 7 (with no mention of Windows 8), and Mac OS X.
As mentioned earlier in the review, there aren’t actually any instructions for OS X either, although we did manage to get the system working on the platform.
While technical users could probably use the provided settings to establish VPN connections on other devices, these are not supported by the provider. We were disappointed that MyVPN.pro appeared to have put so little effort into compatibility.
Once you have logged into MyVPN.pro’s website, you have access to a limited customer area:
All this area provides is access to the PreShared key for L2TP connections (known as the “shared secret” on Macs), the server addresses, and information on subscription validity.
- Good performance from the USA server
- Clear “zero logging” policy
- Bittorrent access
We weren’t so sure about
- Mediocre performance from Holland server
- Unnecessarily small compatibility list
- Incomplete documentation
- Unprofessional website typos
MyVPN.pro isn’t a bad service, as such – it just oozes mediocrity. Offering a service as compatible with the Mac and then leaving “coming soom” (sic) in the instructions section is very unprofessional.
If performance had been stellar, we would have still cautiously recommended the service to techies, especially those attracted by the zero-logging policy and Bittorrent access. However, speeds varied considerably between the two servers we tried, which inspired little confidence.
If privacy is at the top of your priority list, and a US IP address is all you need, perhaps consider trying MyVPN.pro for three days to see if it meets your needs – but you’ll probably find a better option out there.