What are some of the biggest VPN problems and how to fix them?
There are numerous reasons why Virtual Private Networks (VPN) are being widely used nowadays. From their reliability and the security they provide to many other privacy features, a VPN is a great choice for all Internet users. However, it’s all great while your VPN is working perfectly, but what if it suddenly stops? As with many other things, your VPN can experience problems. And while some are not that serious, others might even be unfixable. In these situations, what are your best options?
In order to explain how to fix something, you must know the background for the issue first. And when it comes to a Virtual Private Network, there are a few main problems that you might face, and although some of them can be easily fixed, others are much more complex.
Your VPN won’t connect?
The problem: The whole point of using a VPN is to stay protected and anonymous while browsing the Internet, but also to access restricted content. But if your VPN won’t connect, then this is practically impossible, isn’t it? The most common issue here probably lies in your servers. So, we advise you to start from there.
The solution: Is your password inserted correctly? What about your username? Make sure you checked these two options before proceeding to a different solution. Sometimes, we miss the most obvious things, and lose precious time when searching for a more complicated problem, when in fact, it’s right in front of us. However, if they are, in fact, correct, proceed with checking the servers and your Internet connection. Try opening a website with your VPN disconnected. If your connection is fine, make sure that the server you chose isn’t down. It’s a common problem with a VPN provider. If your service is still being rejected, open Control Panel and the Administrative Tools. Find the Services Icon and make sure that your “Route and Remote Access Service” is running.
Another issue might be the port you are using. If your VPN won’t connect, try using a different port, as some Internet Service Providers (ISP) block traffic on specific ports.
Your software crashed?
The problem: It’s a software, the chances are it’s going to crush. And it’s not such a big issue when it happens from time to time. However, if this issue starts happening on a regular basis, you have to do something in order to fix the problem. If a VPN crashed and it doesn’t have a kill switch, your online activity and privacy might be compromised. Even if it does have a kill switch, constantly crashing can be super annoying, but you can still fix it.
The solution: Make sure your software is updated. Check whether you are using the latest version of your VPN. Moreover, you should try closing other apps or even restarting your computer. Your updates might not be applied yet, and by turning it off and on again you might fix the problem. For a more serious solution, you may try to reinstall your VPN client. The root of the problem might be in a wrong installment, therefore, deleting every configuration and starting over, from the beginning. You can always ask the VPN’s customer support for additional advice because every VPN provider is slightly different than others.
You can’t establish a tunnel connection?
The problem: A VPN works like a tunnel between you and your Internet connection, encrypting everything in order to keep you anonymous. However, if this connection cannot be established, a VPN loses any credibility. The problem might be caused by two things: when the router is performing IP packet filtering, or when a proxy server is standing between the client and the VPN server.
The solution: For the first problem you might try checking everything including the client or the servers for possible IP filters. The second issue is connected to a proxy server that performs NAT translation on all of the traffic. The problem happens when the packets appear to be coming from the proxy instead of the VPN provider. A proxy server usually does not support security protocols that are often used for a VPN connection, so make sure that you are not using a proxy in order to establish a VPN encrypted tunnel.
Your VPN keeps disconnecting?
The problem: Even more annoying than crashing is when you establish a connection but it disconnects. Again, the problem occurs when this starts happening on a regular basis. So, what are your options?
The solution: If your VPN keeps disconnecting there are more solutions to this problem. The first thing you need to do is change servers. Try one that is closer to you, which will provide you with a better connection. You can also try with switching the DNS server, as it can mess with your connection sometimes. However, be careful, because using a different DNS server than the one provided by your VPN might expose you to leaks. After switching DNS servers make sure you check whether your connection is secure and if there are DNS leaks.
A firewall is an important security measure, however, if it’s causing problems with your VPN connection, make sure you temporarily disable it. A firewall might have difficulties in keeping up with your traffic when using a VPN. Therefore, it may slow down the overall connection, causing your VPN to disconnect.
The last solution is changing your protocols. If you are using OpenVPN security protocols, which are some of the best in the industry, consider switching it to a less secure one.
Bottom line, these are some basic tips, for less complicated problems. If you are experiencing a more serious issue, we recommend talking to your service provider, or even switching to a better VPN. Sometimes, the problem might be the result of a low-quality VPN, because not all of them offer the same features and properties.