Charlotte Davis

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Best VPN for PC for 2023

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The number of Windows PC owners who use a Windows VPN connection has grown massively in the past couple of years. And it shouldn’t come as a surprise – VPNs provide security, privacy, and encryption that are must-have features in today’s Internet era.

A reliable virtual private network can help you stay away from trackers and targeted ads, as well as maintain your anonymity while browsing through online pages. Apart from solid security features, using a VPN service for Windows also allows you to access blocked websites by utilizing geo-spoofing tools.

While the best VPN servers offer many of the same qualities, they are definitely not equally designed. Thanks to my exhaustive review of the best Windows VPN for PC, I can tell which of the numerous options available are worth downloading and using on your Windows PC.

Read on and learn about my top 8 choices for the best VPN software for Windows users.

How to Choose the Best VPN for PC?

Before deciding on the best VPN for your PC, you need to make sure it offers suitable features. Below you can find the essential criteria you should follow when considering VPN deals and selecting your go-to tool. 

  • Compatibility. If you’re looking for the best VPN software for Windows PC, ensure the tool is compatible with Windows generation, from Windows 7 to Windows 11. Also, keep in mind that the more simultaneous connections are allowed, the better. 
  • Variety of features. An extensive suite of features will help you stay anonymous in the network, but it will also prevent online threats and bypass geo-restrictions. Look for tools that offer adblockers, various types of servers, for example, obfuscated ones, and many more valuable features. 
  • Speed. A good VPN service should allow you to browse the Internet effortlessly and make the overall experience comfortable. Therefore, it’s important to look for software with superb tunneling protocols, a large server fleet, and a properly managed system. 
  • Cost. Opt for a VPN tool that offers a free version so you can test the system before purchasing it. What’s more, the best money and quality ratio can guarantee top-notch security and efficiency. 
  • Reliable customer support. The most effective VPN service should offer excellent customer support so that any technical issues can be solved promptly and without hassle. Look for a provider with 24/7 customer service available that can be reached via live chat, e-mail, or telephone. 

Best VPN for PC: Full User Reviews

ExpressVPN

1

expressvpn logo

ExpressVPN

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

This user-friendly VPN service provider has to be on top of my list for several reasons. Although it’s not a free VPN for Windows 10, it has a multilingual interface and easy-to-use features that certainly make it a great choice when it comes to reliable Windows VPNs.

  • Number of servers: 2000+
  • Number of server locations: 148+
  • Number of supported devices: 3

I can honestly say that this is the best software for going beyond geo-blocks and accessing any content with top-notch encryption and solid data protection. The split tunneling feature is another strong quality of this VPN server that I truly love. It allows you to select the apps that need to access the server, as well as those that remove particular apps that don’t need to be protected by the VPN software.

ExpressVPN also provides government-grade encryption and offers high-quality features for different types of organizations to maintain their privacy and online security. Customer service is also one of their greatest assets – you get a 30-day money-back guarantee and 24/7 technical assistance.

So, if your goal is to have the best VPN for Windows PC and you don’t mind spending a few dollars on it, then I highly recommend ExpressVPN as your next VPN provider.

Key Features

  • Smart server recommendations
  • Multiple VPN protocols
  • Kill switch technology
  • Split tunneling
  • Ability to control the VPN from browser extensions
  • Ability to unblock Netflix, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, and other popular streaming services
  • Server locations in 94 countries

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Instant setup
  • Ensures complete user anonymity
  • Best VPN for PC gaming
  • Works well with such streaming devices as Netflix; Amazon Prime Video; HBO; Hulu
  • Zero-log audited policy
  • Round-the-clock customer support

Cons

  • Doesn’t work on Linux
  • More costly than other VPN providers
expressvpn logo

ExpressVPN

Surfshark

2

Surfshark Logo

Surfshark

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

Surfshark VPN is another excellent VPN provider for Windows computers that I personally can’t recommend enough. It’s incredibly easy to use, so you don’t need to worry about any complicated and hard-to-understand operating system – Surfshark is designed to make your VPN experience as comfortable as possible.

  • Number of servers: 2100+
  • Number of server locations: 32+
  • Number of supported devices: 7

What I particularly like about this reliable VPN is that it uses a premium 256-bit AES encryption technique which keeps the data private. The wholesome security is ensured by each server having a private DNS and IPV4 stack that prevents data leakage. Besides, it has a great camouflage mode that hides your identity so that it’s invisible even to your internet service provider.

Even though Surfshark VPN isn’t a free VPN software, it still offers its services at an affordable price, so it’s worth trying it out if you’re looking for a hassle-free Windows VPN app.

Key Features

  • Allows P2P connection via VPN on certain servers
  • Enables to bookmark your favorite locations for future use
  • Maintains anonymity by hiding your real IP address
  • Split tunneling
  • Kill switch technology

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Offers secure and anonymous browsing
  • Offers superb server connection speed
  • DNS leak protection+ Works well to bypass your locations without detecting Proxy
  • Supports almost all of the popular streaming services
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • 24/7 customer support

Cons

  • Paid VPN connection
  • Privacy policy isn’t coherent
  • Free trial is only available for Mac and mobile apps
Surfshark Logo

Surfshark

Proton VPN

3

Proton VPN Logo

Proton VPN

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

In my opinion, Proton is one of the best VPNs for Windows PCs and there are a few good reasons for it. While it’s the youngest of all VPNs, it doesn’t stand out from its older alternatives with its high-speed Swiss VPN server that protects your privacy. It unblocks websites, encrypts Internet connection, and follows a strict no-logging policy.

  • Number of servers: 628
  • Number of server locations: 44
  • Number of supported devices: 10

Another good thing about this provider is that it also offers a version that you can download entirely free of charge. What particularly surprised me about this free program is that, unlike other free VPNs, there are no catches here – Proton won’t serve you ads or discreetly sell your browsing history. You can be sure your data is fully protected with this free unlimited VPN connection.

In a nutshell, if you’re looking for the best free VPN for PC, Proton certainly is your best bet.

Key Features

  • DNS leak prevention
  • ProtonMail bundle
  • It has ciphers with Perfect Forward Secrecy
  • It can be integrated with the Tor anonymity network

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Solid encryption and protocols
  • Excellent server speed
  • Security audits
  • Offers unlimited data
  • Tor connection and Multihop VPN
  • It allows you to stream BBC iPlayer with the free version

Cons

  • Offers limited servers for the Asian region
  • Customer service can only be reached via e-mail
Proton VPN Logo

Proton VPN

Nord VPN

4

Nord VPN

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

The impressive server network and the ability to unblock almost every streaming service available undoubtedly make NordVPN a mainstay on my list. This cross-platform VPN service provider is extremely user-friendly and provides end-to-end security along with military-grade encryption.

  • Number of servers: 5500+
  • Number of server locations: 60
  • Number of supported devices: 6

The software doesn’t track or store any sensitive information, and its numerous protocols (including its own NordLynx), “Onion over” privacy, and a no-log policy offer you complete anonymity when using the Internet on Windows devices. What’s more, the feature that I like the most about this provider is the automatic kill switch that protects your data even when you suddenly lose the Internet connection.

In addition, it showed some of the fastest and most consistent VPN connections I saw in my most recent speed testing.

Key Features

  • Double data encryption
  • DNS leak protection
  • It offers double VPN or onion over VPN
  • Automatic kill switch

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Tor and Multihop connections
  • Excellent speed results
  • Vast network of servers
  • You can get additional features like Nord Password Manager and NordLocker for a premium fee
  • 24/7 customer support

Cons

  • It is a paid VPN tool
  • Not quite as intuitive as ExpressVPN

IPVanish

5

IPVanishVPN Logo

IPVanish

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

Another top position on my list belongs to IPVanish which offers uninterrupted service and very fast connectivity. With this reliable VPN software, you can avail of unlimited bandwidth and an ultra-speed connection that works well for both uploads and downloads.

  • Number of servers: 5500+
  • Number of server locations: 60
  • Number of supported devices: 6

The reason I like this provider is that it provides an excellent browsing experience thanks to the 256-bits of AES encryption, all while keeping you anonymous and protected from hackers. Besides, it also has a traffic obfuscation feature that makes it difficult to detect whether you’re using VPN or not.

Another great aspect is that the cost of the service starts from $3.99 per month, which I think is a fair price. You also get unlimited simultaneous connections which makes it an even better option.

Key Features

  • Offers a SOCKS5 proxy
  • Provides support for multiple VPN protocols
  • Automatically suggests the fastest VPN server
  • Doesn’t record any online activity
  • Uses a 256-bit encryption method

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Excellent for torrenting and anonymous streaming
  • Fast speed and easy working
  • Provides enough speed to stream 8k videos
  • Zero IP-logs

Cons

  • Cannot unblock Disney+
  • Inconsistent support for Netflix
  • Privacy policy is a little confusing
  • Doesn’t work in China

Atlas VPN

6

atlasVPN Logo

Atlas VPN

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

There aren’t many VPN tools like Atlas. For me, it’s one of the best VPNs for Windows PC, thanks to the user-friendly interface that allows you to effortlessly navigate through the app, as well as a range of superb security features.

  • Number of servers: 750+
  • Number of server locations: 7+
  • Number of supported devices: Unlimited

Atlas VPN offers the best-in-class WireGuard protocol, which ensures profound protection when streaming, gaming, and general Internet browsing. I particularly enjoy the option of accessing the Internet from various IP addresses at the same time.

In my book, some of the best qualities of this VPN tool are that it doesn’t impose any restrictions on the bandwidth and that it allows for unlimited simultaneous connections.

Last but not least, the server is not only incredibly reliable, but it is also available to use for free. And if you decide to upgrade your services, it will only cost you $2.55 per month, which I think is extremely inexpensive. Atlas VPN may certainly become your new best free VPN software.

Key Features

  • Strong encryption and P2P support
  • Data leak protection
  • Unlimited devices
  • Data breach checker
  • Kill switch
  • SafeSwap – IP address rotation

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Advanced security
  • Blazing speed
  • Unblocks streaming sites
  • Multiple plans to choose from
  • Malicious site blocker

Cons

  • Paid subscription is required to benefit from advanced features
  • Small server fleet
atlasVPN Logo

Atlas VPN

CyberGhost

7

CyberGhost Logo

CyberGhost

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

CyberGhost VPN is an enormous server network that provides an excellent boost to Internet speed and first-class data protection. It allowed me to hide my IP and surf through sites anonymously with much ease.

  • Number of servers: 3100+
  • Number of server locations: 60+
  • Number of supported devices: 7

The software has a strict policy against log maintenance which is very important for me when it comes to VPN service. What’s more, it also features an OpenVPN technology with L2TP-IPSec protocol that enables running multiple connections simultaneously, completely hassle-free.

Although it’s not a free VPN connection for Windows, CyberGhost offers a 45-day money-back guarantee. You can also cancel your subscription at any time with no additional costs.

Key Features

  • Allows access to the NoSpy server
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • 256-bit AES encryption technology
  • DNS with IP leak protection
  • Automatic kill switch

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Fast download speed
  • Breaks all geo-restrictions
  • Allows you to torrent anonymously
  • Many locations to choose from
  • Unblocks any websites
  • 24/7 technical support

Cons

  • Incompatible with Chromebook
  • Expensive compared to other providers
  • Limited features to offer on mobile and macOS
CyberGhost Logo

CyberGhost

Hotspot Shield

8

Hotspot Shield VPN

Hotspot Shield

 Expert Review

Very Good 10

Another excellent VPN provider is Hotspot Shield offering the ability to hide user IP addresses from trackers and prominent locations with the help of virtual tunnel technology.

  • Number of servers: 2500+
  • Number of server locations: 25+
  • Number of supported devices: 5

I really like this VPN tool for providing full anonymity and privacy by deleting all logs as soon as the browsing session is aborted. It also gives you 500 MB of data per day and the opportunity to use the software for free by downloading its basic plan.

However, if you want to benefit from the advanced features of this Windows PC VPN, you will need to get the premium version which is also quite cost-effective.

Key Features

  • Virtual tunnel technology
  • Kill switch
  • Smart VPN feature
  • P2P support
  • Catapult Hydra protocol

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • User-friendly interface
  • Excellent speed
  • Feature-rich
  • Unblocks Netflix; Disney+ and other most popular streaming services

Cons

  • Slightly limiting in scope
  • Paid VPN connection on a premium plan
  • The free version is packed with ads
Hotspot Shield VPN

Hotspot Shield

FAQs

Find answers to the most common questions people ask.

How does VPN work?

A VPN works by routing your device’s Internet connection by choosing VPN’s private service rather than your Internet service provider. This enables you to transfer data to the Internet, as it comes directly from the VPN instead of your computer.

Should I use a VPN?

All of the applications I included in this review are completely safe to use and obey international security standards. Beware of certain “freemium” time trackers that offer plenty of features at no charge — a lot of the time, such apps double down as tools that harvest personal data from unwitting users.

How do I set up a VPN on my PC?

If you’re using time tracking tools to measure employee productivity, you might run into conflicts with some members of your team. Such clashes are almost unavoidable when introducing policies designed to measure the time your workers spend on their tasks, as they might feel like their privacy is being violated. In such cases, make sure to communicate your plans clearly, all the while reassuring your employees that you still trust them to be autonomous in their work. To ease some of their worries, you might want to consider an app like Timely, which openly stands against practices that encroach upon employees’ privacy.

What are common encryption techniques used by VPN services?

The most common encryption techniques used by VPN tools are 256-bit encryption and UDP TCP.

What are the limitations of free VPNs?

Although free VPN providers for Windows can still offer users the required anonymity and privacy, there are some limitations that free VPN tools may have. These include limited data allowance, slowing down the Internet speed, or bombarding with ads.

Some free VPN software may also sell users’ sensitive information, private IP addresses, or even their web traffic to third-party companies. Therefore, if you’re looking for a free VPN service, it may be better to opt for a paid one which offers a money-back guarantee. 

Can you be tracked if you use a VPN?

If you’re using a VPN tool to route your entire Internet traffic through its servers, it’s crucial to trust that tool. It’s certainly easier to trust VPN companies that have been longer on the market are their position is likely to be well established. 

The best VPN services will have a clearly stated privacy policy saying what information it collects and what it does to protect this information. 

Is VPN safe for laptops?

Yes, VPNs are safe to use on laptops, as long as you download a reputable VPN service. As some free VPN apps may steal your personal information, it’s recommended to opt for any of the pioneering paid VPN services as they will guarantee to take your privacy seriously. 

Does Windows 10 have a built-in VPN?

Yes, Windows 10 has a built-in VPN server, however, it’s only possible to use with the help of PPTP. This means that it’s quite difficult to set up and comes with a list of limitations compared to the separate VPN tool. It also comes with slower Internet speed and worse security. 

Is NordVPN compatible with Windows 11? 

Yes, NordVPN is fully compatible with Windows 11. Some minor compatibility issues that occurred earlier in 2023 have been resolved by the provider, so you shouldn’t have any problems with running NordVPN on Windows 11. 

What is the best free VPN for Windows PC?

Some of the best free VPNs worth recommending are, for example, Atlas VPN or Proton VPN. These providers have good compatibility with Windows and their free versions are good quality. Alternatively, you can opt for their paid subscriptions for more advanced security and feature boost. You can also try out NordVPN which offers a free 7-day trial or a 30-day money-back guarantee.

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