Linux might not be as popular as Windows and macOS, but the fact is that many people sway towards this lightweight operating system nowadays. While many open-source providers exist for this platform, some providers offer native apps and are easy to set up. Today, we’re going to give you our top 3 picks that you can easily download, install, and use. Whether you’re using Ubuntu, Debian, Kali, or Fedora, our top 3 VPNs for Linux will help you.
Why Should You Use a VPN for Linux?
For those who don’t know, Android, a very popular smartphone OS, is based on the Linux kernel. People often say that this system and its incantations are quite secure, which is indeed the case.
Your smartphone can’t get infected with viruses or malware, making it much more secure than Windows PC. But, there’s a catch. Nobody mentions that this applies only when you’re offline.
When online, viruses aren’t the only threat you’ll face. There are hackers, trackers, ISP that is monitoring your activity, geo-restrictions, and so forth. We already mentioned a few reasons why using a VPN for Linux is a must, but let’s elaborate.
Preserving Privacy Online
Many people will neglect a very important part of internet browsing. While browsing, your internet provider e.g. ISP sees everything you do online. These guys give you the internet but they also see every step you make. We bet that many of you didn’t know this.
Okay, now lower your eyebrows and keep reading.
The worst thing is that every bit of information that the ISP collects is easily accessible to the government. If they want to spy on you, they can easily do so, without you even realizing it. That’s how they know what hobbies you have, what is your mobile number, where you’re located, and so forth.
We understand that no one likes being watched and that all of us crave privacy. That’s where this service comes into place. Using your Linux computer can be much more enjoyable when you connect to a VPN server, obfuscate your IP address, and make yourself anonymous online.
This way, you can browse the internet freely, knowing that no one breathes behind your neck.
Geo-restrictions are an integral part of the internet and they’re quite disgusting if we can put it like that. You want to access Disney+ from abroad, and boom – it’s not available in your country. Or perhaps Netflix and HBO GO – the same situation.
You can travel to the United States to be able to access these platforms. But, if we count all the expenses you’ll make on the way, it’s better to give a few dollars monthly for a VPN that is working on Linux, right?
This service will let you change your online location, thus giving you access to geo-restricted platforms. Simply open the app, connect to the server in a different country, and enjoy the internet with no limits.
Apart from accessing streaming platforms, you can gamble when abroad, watch porn, or simply access any geo-blocked site.
Using the Internet in Censored Countries
If you live in the UAE, China, Russia, or Belarus, you’ll find it hard to properly use the internet. China is the most notorious for blocking more than 200 sites, including Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and many others.
This is called censorship, which is one of the worst problems on the internet. Just imagine not being able to access your Facebook profile or watch YouTube videos – what’s the point of the internet then?
A VPN will, once again, obfuscate your IP address, making it impossible for the ISP to block access to the internet. If it can’t see you, it can’t do anything to you – simple as that!
Visiting the torrent sites, we can see that there are plenty of torrents for Linux. Even a BitTorrent client is available for this platform, which speaks volumes about its popularity. Now, governments hate torrenting and they feast on the victims who get caught.
The reason being is because torrenting often means violating copyright.
We don’t recommend violating copyright but we do recommend using a VPN for torrenting. Even if you don’t violate any copyrights, the government can still cling to the fact that you’ve used torrent sites, hence impose a hefty fee or jail time, depending on the country.
Best VPNs for Linux (Ubuntu, Fedora, CentOS, OpenSUSE, Mint, …)
Whatever Linux-based platform you’re using, a Virtual Private Network will always come in handy. Here are our top three choices for this operating system:
ExpressVPN covers a wide array of devices in its subscription. It’s the best VPN for Fire TV but also for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux. Unlike many providers that require you to download the OpenVPN client, ExpressVPN works out of the box.
Of course, the app uses a command-line interface and supports only OpenVPN on this platform. That’s not a problem, given how Linux is limited in regards to VPN apps.
Apart from that, the provider functions the same as on the other platforms. 3,000+ servers in 94 countries are still available to you, as well as a kill switch and 256-bit encryption.
Linux users will like it because of its enormous speeds that are the fastest on the market. Moreover, ExpressVPN is perfect for torrenting and unblocking geo-blocked sites, such as Netflix, Hulu, DAZN, and Hotstar.
If a Linux device isn’t the only one you’re using, you’ll be glad to know that it supports up to 5 simultaneous connections.
This means that you can protect 5 devices at the same time, on the same account. Finally, there’s 24/7 customer support that you can contact via live chat. If problems arise, these guys (and girls) will help you solve them in no time.
A 49% discount for an annual plan is still there waiting for you – three months free is the icing on the cake for those who get it.
NordVPN also uses a command-line interface, much like its colleague ExpressVPN. Unlike the previous provider, it’s a bit cheaper but offers 5,700+ servers in 59 countries. We like the fact that this is a relatively affordable provider, given how feature-packed it is.
The provider is stationed in Panama, and as such, it keeps no logs of your internet browsing. Being outside of the 14 Eyes, it isn’t forced to do so, which is a huge plus. Security-wise, Linux users can enjoy 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, Double VPN, NordLynx, and many other features.
NordVPN is exceptionally good when it comes to unblocking sites. Aside from Netflix, you can unblock even gambling sites and browse the Darkweb safely. Similar to other providers, this one uses OpenVPN by default, which is, with WireGuard, the best protocol you can use.
If you get it and it’s not up to your expectations, a 30-day money-back period is here. But, as we said, NordVPN is one of the best providers in the game, so you’ll most likely keep your subscription. For Linux, you ain’t going to find a better VPN option, except for ExpressVPN.
The last provider we want to mention is CyberGhost, a Romanian giant. We call it a giant because of its huge server network of 7,000 servers in 90+ countries. This provider can pride itself on being one of the best bangs for the buck, which you’ll quickly realize upon visiting its site.
CyberGhost is nearly as fast as ExpressVPN and with its dedicated servers, Linux users will torrent and stream effortlessly. There are dedicated servers for Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Prime Video, and other platforms.
And if you want to get some Linux apps on 1337x or TPB, that’s an easy thing to do. In its features, CyberGhost includes a reliable ad-blocker that serves as a tracker blocker, too. Since it’s from Romania, it also maintains a zero-logging policy, accompanied by 256-bit AES encryption and a kill switch.
Users who want to save a dime for a beer will most likely choose CyberGhost. Its 3-year plan is dirt-cheap and offers up to 7 simultaneous connections and 24/7 customer support. What more to ask for?
Is Using a Free VPN for Linux a Good Idea?
We mentioned early in the article that open-source providers basically flooded the VPN market for Linux. Well, that’s some bad news, given that free providers aren’t worth your time for many reasons.
Some of them include a lack of security features, slow speeds, inability to unblock streaming platforms, and absence of a zero-logging policy. Free providers, for the most part, store logs of your personal information, which they later sell to third parties. That’s a red flag.
Not to mention that they have weaker encryption and offer subpar speeds that will hinder even the basic browsing experience. We do NOT recommend free VPNs for Linux, for the reasons mentioned above.
If you’ve made up your mind and you want a VPN for Linux, you’ve got to get the right and best one. All the VPNs from our list are perfectly fine, but we recommend ExpressVPN. It’s simply the best on the market, offering the fastest speeds and rock-solid security.
Get it now and claim your 49% discount on an annual plan, plus 3 months completely FREE. Oh, and no need to thank us – you can thank us by enjoying anonymous and secure web browsing.
🔎 What is a VPN for Linux?
A VPN is also known as a Virtual Private Network. It is a service that will allow you to connect to an intermediary server to mask your IP address and encrypt your Internet traffic. The goal is to offer you more security, but also to allow you to access geo-restricted content, or to download torrents anonymously.
🛠 How to configure a VPN on Linux?
The procedure to follow will depend on the Linux distribution you are using (Ubuntu, Debian, Mint …). Most of the time, you will only have to download a file provided by your VPN service and then install it.
Do not hesitate to visit your service’s website for more details on how to install a VPN on Linux.
🔌 How to connect to a VPN on Linux?
From your command prompt (if you have chosen ExpressVPN), simply type the command “expressvpn connect [LOCATION]”. It’s as simple as that. And to disconnect from the server in question, you will have to type the command “expressvpn disconnect”.
💻 On which Linux distributions can I use a VPN?
Absolutely all of them. There is no limitation. You can very well use your VPN on Debian, Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora …
Quentin is the co-founder of the-bestvpn.com. With several experiences as a System and Network Engineer, he is very knowledgeable when it comes to VPN, cybersecurity and the risks of using the Internet nowadays.