Encrypting your home network with a VPN is a great way to protect your personal data while allowing you to access the content you need when you need it. But setting up a VPN on your router can seem too complicated. Do you need to worry about whether or not your ISP will throttle your bandwidth if you use too much of it? Is there an easy way to ensure that your VPN remains always-on even when you are not using it? This article will tell you exactly how to put a VPN on your router so that you can enjoy all the benefits that the technology has to offer without any of the frustration that sometimes comes with trying to figure out tech support on your own. So, let’s get started!
The Basics Of Setting Up A VPN On Your Router
Before you begin setting up a VPN on your router, you need to consider what type of VPN you will use. There are free services such as OpenVPN and PPTP that many services providers provide, but if you are looking for a no-strings-attached experience, then you should consider choosing a paid service. The majority of VPNs allow you to connect multiple devices to a single account, so you will not have to worry about using up all of your bandwidth on your home network. Keep in mind that some services require you to purchase a dedicated IP address from their service provider. For more information on this, check out the following article from BitSaver:
The Decision-Making Process
Once you have decided which type of VPN you will use, the next step is to research the various VPNs available and decide which one suits you best. You have numerous to choose from, so take your time in making that decision. Remember that you are making a major investment here, so it is important that you choose the right one. Some of the factors you need to consider are as follows:
- Security — Is it encrypted end-to-end?
- Features — What features does the VPN offer? Does it have a kill-switch to protect your privacy?
- Performance — How is the VPN’s performance? Can you download files quickly?
- Reliability — How reliable is the service? Can you rely on it to always be available when you need it?
- Value — What is the cost of the VPN? Are there any free alternatives? Is there a limited number of providers?
- Pricing — How much does it cost?
- Guarantees — Does the company offer any kind of guarantees?
After you have evaluated all the factors above, you should feel confident that you have made the right choice and are ready to move on to the next step. If you don’t mind spending a little money, then consider opting for a paid service that offers a money-back guarantee.
Installing And Configuring The VPN Client
After you have selected the VPN service that suits you best, the next step is to download and install the VPN client. The installation process should be rather straightforward, and after you have done that, you will be able to use the VPN at all times without any problems. You should also configure the VPN client once you have it installed. There are a few things you need to do here to get the most out of the service. First, you need to enter a username and password for the VPN so that it can connect to the Wi-Fi network. After you log in, you will need to confirm your IP address. This is especially important if you use a cellular connection to access the internet. Your IP address can be easily traced by your internet service provider, and it may also be used to attack your network. Confirming your IP address keeps someone from impersonating you and accessing your personal data. Once you have confirmed your IP address, you can change the VPN’s settings to suit your needs. Using the VPN is actually very easy. When you want to access a website that is encrypted with HTTPS, all you need to do is type in the address of the site in the browser and click on “enter”. If you want to access an unencrypted site, then you will see a warning symbol in the bottom right corner of your browser’s address bar. Simply click on that symbol and follow the on-screen instructions to log in to the VPN and access the site you need. After you have used the VPN client to access the site, you can disconnect from the network and reconnect when you want to re-access the content you previously viewed. That’s all there is to it!
Protecting Your Home Network With A VPN
Once you have set up the VPN on your router, it is time to start protecting your network. The first step is to ensure that all devices connected to your network are aware that they are encrypted and that the network itself is protected. To do that, you will need to configure all devices connected to your network to trust the VPN’s certificate. This process is called “pinning”, and it is very easy to do. Open up a web browser on one of the devices connected to your network and type in the address of the site you want to visit. If you are unsure of the address, then look it up online. The first time you type in the address, you will see a warning symbol in the bottom right corner of your browser’s address bar. This is to help you identify if the site you are accessing is legitimate or a malicious site that is impersonating a safe site. If you don’t see any warning symbols, then the site you are accessing is most likely a safe site and it will not hurt your network in any way. Simply click on the green button to continue to the site you are trying to access. If you click on a link that takes you to a suspicious site, then you will see warning symbols in the bottom right corner of your browser’s address bar, and you will know not to click on that link. The same rule applies to any site you may search for online. If you see a warning symbol in the search bar on the left side of your screen, then the site you are entering is legitimate but it may be that the search engine is warning you that the site you are entering may contain malware. It is very important to look for these warning signs and take extra precautions before entering any site you find online that is not safe. If you do not take the time to do this, then you may expose your network to unnecessary attacks. The more you know, the better!
Now that you have all of your devices on your network protected, it is time to use the VPN to encrypt your home network and access the content you need when you need it. To do this, you will need to ensure that your network is always-on and that you are connected to the internet whenever you use the VPN. The easiest way to do this is to put the VPN on your router and use the built-in firewall to automatically connect to the VPN whenever you are connected to the internet through the router. In other words, when you are using the internet sharing feature on your router, then the VPN is enabled and you are protected whenever you are online! This approach has a few advantages. First, you always have access to the internet when you need it. Second, you do not need to think about whether or not you will use the internet while on the phone with a customer service rep because this service will not allow you to use the internet more than twice the amount of time you are paying for. Third, you do not need to configure any devices connected to your network because the router will take care of everything for you. It is a good idea to configure your mobile devices to trust the VPN, so they will be able to access content that is encrypted throughout the network. You can also configure your desktop devices to automatically connect to the VPN whenever they are plugged in, so if you are using public Wi-Fi then you are protected without having to worry about logging on to the VPN website and enabling it on your mobile device or computer.
Even if you have a fast broadband connection at home, it does not matter if you are on the road or at a hotel. The speed of your connection will determine how much you need to spend on your mobile phone data plan. One bad experience with bandwidth throttling can make or break your entire vacation. For this reason, it is important to choose a VPN that does not include bandwidth throttling as a feature. The majority of free VPNs do include this feature. If you are not sure whether or not your chosen VPN includes bandwidth throttling, then contact their support team and ask them. Remember, you are making a big investment here, so it is important to protect it by avoiding any kind of throttling.