Ray Walsh

Ray Walsh

August 22, 2018

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Windows is the most widely used operating system in the world and as a result, you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to VPNs. But, it’s important to pick the right VPN so you can rest assured that your PC is properly protected. In this article, we explain why a VPN is so important and take a look at the best VPNs available for Windows


VPN for Windows

The best VPN for a Windows PC: Summary


Windows is by far the most popular desktop operating system on the planet. With so many users, it’s of little surprise that Windows has a large target painted on its back when it comes to malicious activity. Hackers target Windows machines simply because the attack surface is so much greater than that of competing operating systems. A Windows VPN can protect your online activity by encrypting all your web traffic. This means that hackers, your ISP… even the government can’t see what you get up to online. 

Protecting your online security is just one of the many benefits that a Windows VPN client offers. A VPN for Windows also lets you conceal your true location by providing you with an IP address in a different country.

Below you will find our expertly selected 10 best Windows VPNs:

The best VPNs for Windows 10 List:

With a look at our recommended best VPNs in the in-depth list below, you can pick one that suits you:

1. ExpressVPN

A superfast VPN that’s excellent for streaming on Windows

ExpressVPN for Windows

Server Locations: 94 countries | Total Servers: 2000 | Average Speed: 57.57 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 3 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, Linux

Pros:

  • + Fast speeds
  • + Easy to use
  • + 30-day money-back guarantee
  • + No usage logs
  • + Excellent customer service

Cons:

  • A bit pricey
  • Only 3 simultaneous connections

ExpressVPN is a great VPN for Windows. It has servers across the globe, in 94 countries. Their software for Windows provides OpenVPN encryption, which is implemented strongly and is perfect for security. The company keeps no usage logs and has an excellent reputation for providing security to its subscribers. In addition, the connection logs are aggregated, which means they can never be tied to a single subscriber and are completely safe.

Customer care is fantastic: the VPN has 24/7 customer support that can help you with unblocking anything you are interested in. This VPN for Windows will also keep you secure on public WiFi. Furthermore, it can be used on three simultaneous devices, so don’t think it will only run on Windows – you can put it on your phone and tablet as well.

Connection speeds are lightning fast and P2P is allowed for BitTorrent. This makes the VPN perfect for all data-intensive tasks and means that you will be able to stream in HD. We love this VPN for Windows, and because of its 30-day money-back guarantee, anyone can test the service to see just how great it is. If you want the best, look no further.

Why not try ExpressVPN using their 30-day money back guarantee to see why we rate them so highly?


2. NordVPN

A VPN with strong security features to ensure your PC is safe

NordVPN for Windows

Server Locations: 62 countries | Total Servers: 4568 | Average Speed: 55.12 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 6 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Great speeds
  • + Excellent encryption
  • + No logs

Cons:

  • Can have some inconsistent speeds

NordVPN is undoubtedly a fully-featured service. The fact that it is based in Panama and keeps no logs at all is also a big draw for those who care about privacy. Its software looks good and works well. Speed performance is now very impressive.

NordVPN permits torrenting works with all major streaming services (including US Netflix and BBC iPlayer), and has servers in 62 countries. It even throws in a full smart DNS service for free! What you get with NordVPN is a fully featured, privacy-friendly VPN service that is fast and at a great price.

If you’re looking for a VPN to use on a Windows machine, visit NordVPN and give them a shot.


3. CyberGhost

A fantastic VPN for windows if you’re new to the technology

CyberGhost for Windows

Server Locations: 60 countries | Total Servers: 2750 | Average Speed: 56.01 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 7 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android

Pros:

  • + Fast connections for streaming on Windows
  • + Secure & well implemented encryption
  • + Easy to use and reliable service

Cons:

  • Some minimal logs kept

CyberGhost is an excellent VPN for Windows that is perfect for bypassing censorship and unblocking content from all over the world. It is highly secure thanks to a superb privacy policy, great security features, and strong military-grade encryption.

The VPN installs and works seamlessly in Windows, and is extremely easy to use. P2P torrenting is permitted. Customer support is fantastic, though live chat is in UK daylight hours only. Also good news: this VPN can be installed on up to five devices – and can be used on Windows, Android, Mac, and iOS – at the same time if you wish.

Finally, it has a 30-day money back guarantee so that you can test the service.

Considering the price of this VPN, it really is hard to beat: well worth a test run! Head on over and check out CyberGhost for yourself!


4. PrivateVPN

A perfect VPN for Windows choice if you’re on a budget

PrivateVPN for Windows

Server Locations: 60 countries | Total Servers: 100 | Average Speed: 48.93 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 6 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + High speeds for streaming
  • + Great customer service offered
  • + Strong levels of encryption available
  • + Great value for money

Cons:

  • DNS must be configured manually

Sweden-based VPN provider, PrivateVPN, is an excellent choice for a Windows VPN, especially after winning BestVPN.com’s “Best Value VPN” of 2018. Not only do you get a full-service VPN at an affordable price, excellent customer service and super fast streaming speeds, great encryption, and a user-friendly Windows client interface.

Want to know more? Check out PrivateVPN to find out what more they can offer.


5. VPNArea

A secure VPN for Windows that accepts Bitcoins as payment

VPNArea for Windows

Server Locations: 70 countries | Total Servers: 200 | Average Speed: 50.42 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 6 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Keeps no logs
  • + Full DNS leak protection
  • + Brilliant auto IP feature

Cons:

  • Customer support could be improved

VPNArea is based in Bulgaria and is therefore firmly out of the National Security Agency (NSA) and UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) areas of influence, which makes it a great option for any privacy-heads out there. This focus on privacy is reinforced with a great no logs policy strong encryption, and the fact that it accepts payment in Bitcoins. Speeds are good, and there are plenty of server locations.

Its desktop client offers DNS leak protection, disables IPv6, and provides a per-app kill switch and a firewall-based system kill switch. The auto Internet Protocol (IP) feature changes your IP every five minutes, which is interesting.

If you want to know more about the service, visit the VPNArea website.


6. IPVanish

A VPN for Windows that has great speeds through proprietary servers

IPVanish for Windows

Server Locations: 60 countries | Total Servers: 1140 | Average Speed: 66.31 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 10 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Keeps no logs
  • + Offers great OpenVPN encryption
  • + Offers great speeds for streaming and gaming

Cons:

  • Has worked with the FBI in the past

IPVanish is a zero logs Windows VPN based in the US. It is a solid service that runs on a proprietary network of servers. This allows it to provide stunning speeds; that make it great for streaming or gaming. This VPN is fully featured with a killswitch and DNS leak protection. It also implements stealth (Xor) for getting around firewalls.

Although IPVanish has come under some criticism for helping US authorities to catch a criminal, the reality is that for most people’s needs this VPN is good. Though, having said that, it admittedly no longer unblocks US Netflix. Despite this slight drawback, it is a VPN that tens of thousands of subscribers enjoy. You can test the service now thanks to its 7-day money back guarantee.

We recommend IPVanish as a great no-logs service for Windows, that’s certainly worth checking out.


7. PrivateInternetAccess

A no logs VPN for Windows that has been proven in court

Server Locations: 32 countries | Total Servers: 3500 | Average Speed: 48.43 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 5 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Keeps no logs
  • + Accepts Bitcoin as a form of payment
  • + Well implemented encryption

Cons:

  • No money back guarantee

PIA keep no logs, which is a claim that it has proven in court! It is not common to have such definite proof that the VPN does what it says it does when it comes to logs, so well done!

Its desktop software supports multiple security options, a VPN kill switch, DNS leak protection, and port forwarding. The PIA Android client is also great, and PIA boasts excellent connection speeds. We should, however, note that Apple users seem to have a less positive view of this service.

For more information, head over to PIA.


8. ProtonVPN

A fantastic privacy policy, great for the privacy-focused

Server Locations: 16 countries | Total Servers: 140 | Average Speed: 44.24 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 5 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android

Pros:

  • + Great speeds offered on all servers
  • + Military grade OpenVPN encryption
  • + Keeps no logs

Cons:

  • Only 14 countries covered so far

ProtonVPN is a VPN from Switzerland that is perfect for use on any Windows system. The software is easy to use and provides all the features necessary to keep your data secure both at home and while on public WiFi. Servers are located around the world, and because ProtonVPN uses a Secure Core network of servers – it will provide fantastic speeds for streaming.

Proton permits P2P for torrenting on some of its servers. In addition, it can be installed and used on five simultaneous devices. That means you can protect all your devices with one account. The VPN is zero logs (it never stores IP addresses) and the time of your last session is deleted every time a new session is started.

To find out more about this exciting new service, visit ProtonVPN.


9. VyprVPN

A robust service that has its own server network

Server Locations: 70 countries | Total Servers: 700 | Average Speed: 45.94 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 5 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Very fast thanks to owning servers
  • + Port selection offered
  • + Stealth servers offered

Cons:

  • Doesn’t allow torrenting

VyprVPN is based in Switzerland which means it falls out of the jurisdiction of 5 Eyes nations. In addition, it has a solid no usage logs policy (and only keeps minimal connection logs for 30-day). This VPN runs on parent-firm Golden Frog’s proprietary network of servers. That means it can provide excellent speeds. However, the downside is that it also asks users to refrain from torrenting; so if P2P is your main need look elsewhere on this list.

The Windows client is solid, it has a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and a proprietary stealth feature called Chameleon for getting around firewalls in countries like China and Iran. Servers are located in over 70 countries, making it perfect for all your unlocking needs. Potential subscribers can try a 3-day free trial, and a 30-day money back guarantee is also available.

Get your hands on the VyprVPN client over at VyprVPN.com.


10. Buffered

A super simple and easy to use VPN for Windows

Server Locations: 45 countries | Total Servers: 150 | Average Speed: 22.66 Mbit/s | Allows Torrenting: Yes | Simultaneous Connections: 5 | Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android

Pros:

  • + Fast servers in 41 countries
  • + Easy to use in Windows
  • + Strong encryption and privacy features

Cons:

  • Quite expensive on the monthly tariff

Buffered is an excellent VPN for Windows that is easy to use and provides excellent security levels. Not only does it provide strong OpenVPN encryption, but it also has a kill switch to ensure that you never leak data to your ISP. In addition, this VPN has a solid no usage logs policy.

When it comes to connection speeds, this VPN performs well on all 41 server locations. That means you will be able to do data-intensive tasks such as streaming in HD. P2P is permitted so if torrenting is your thing, this VPN has you covered.

Thanks to 24/7 live chat support this VPN also has some of the best customer service in the business.

Why not give Buffered a go risk-free thanks to its 30-day money back guarantee.


VPNs on Windows: Useful Resources

Below is a list of useful guides and resources to help you get the most out of your VPN and Windows.

How to install and set up a VPN on Windows

How to stop Windows 10 collecting data on you

Build your own VPN killswitch for Windows


Why do I need a VPN for Windows?

All over the world, governments are passing legislation that lets them snoop on internet users. ISPs perform data retention on behalf of governments, and in the US they can even sell web browsing histories to third parties. In addition, a number of coalitions between countries – known as 5 eyes, 9 eyes and 14 eyes – let countries spy on each other to get around local restrictions.

By using a VPN on windows machines, your data is kept secure and private. There are two ways in which a VPN keeps you secure. First, all of the internet traffic coming and going from your laptop or PC is encrypted. This prevents anyone from tracking what you do online. Whether it’s a hacker, your ISP, the government or your employer, you are free from those prying eyes.

Second, a VPN allows you to conceal your IP address (location). This not only lets you torrent safely but by connecting to a VPN server in a different country you can access foreign (geo-restricted) website services and online video content that would usually be blocked. VPN technology also allows people to bypass restricted or censored content in their home country.

Setting up a VPN for Windows

All of the VPNs we recommend in this guide have client software for Windows. Therefore, all you need to do is subscribe, download the software, install it and click ‘connect’. You can also check out our guide to set up your Windows VPN manually for more customization options.

Compare VPN protocols for Windows

When you subscribe to a Windows VPN, you may be presented with a number of VPN encryption protocol options. Here is a rundown of all the protocols.

VPN Protocol Speed Security
Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) Fast Weak
Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol(L2TP)/Internet Protocol Secutriy (IPSec) Average Average
Internet Key Exchange v2 (IKEv2) Fast Average
OpenVPN Fast Strong

We believe the best all-around protocol is OpenVPN. All of our recommended VPNs support this protocol.

For a more in-depth look at VPN encryption and protocols, check out our Ultimate VPN Encryption Guide.


Best VPN for Windows: Price Comparison

In the table below we compare the prices of the VPNs featured in our list to help you find a price point that’s right for you.

Title image credit: hafakot/Shutterstock.com

Ray Walsh
September 7th, 2018

Ray Walsh is one of BestVPN's resident VPN experts. Ray is currently ranked #1 VPN authority in the world by agilience.com. During his time at BestVPN.com Ray has reviewed some of the world's foremost VPNs. Ray is an advocate for digital privacy, with vast experience writing about the political and social aspects of infosec, cybersec, and data privacy. Find him @newsglug on Twitter.

5 responses to “The Best VPNs for Windows in 2018

  1. I am looking for a VPN client to use with our own VPN servers, not a VPN service. Can you please show how these can be used as VPN clients?

  2. Thank you Ray for such an awesome the article, I’m not big fan of Windows since my first MacBook 2008, I shifted to MacOS and I couldn’t be any Happier. Regards those VPN, I just wanted to share my humble experience of using their services.
    All of them are amazing and I think they have their pros and cons. Put from my experience I found that not all of them provide a great speed, with keeping in mind connection could be a bit slow due to the encrypted connection and the location of the servers. I usually my two must favorite locations are U.K. & Netherlands. My connection is 100mbps (12.5 MB/s), and when connecting to those locations I found my connection drops to 15mbps, which led me to try all of them, and I found speed is not satisfactory for me, till I signed up with Hide.me which became my favorite and the only VPN I’m using at the moment. The speed with connection to U.K. Server is 91mbps connection to NL is 95mbps, which is really still good.
    I still don’t understand what can be effecting the connection maybe the load of people connecting to certain server. Yet with providers promising us we are connection to faster server, or maybe connection from Middle East is effecting too.
    Any how thank you for the awesome article.

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