Is your VPN not working? Problems with VPN apps can quite alarming because without a VPN, you remain at risk of getting your privacy exposed on the web.
The good thing is, many of the common VPN issues are simple enough that you can resolve these yourself.
If you have already tried these tips and still your VPN won’t connect, you can look into an alternative having strong customer support, which is capable of resolving pretty much every issue technical issue on an urgent basis.
Here’s a list of some VPNs with top-rated customer support:
Common VPN Troubleshooting and Their Fixes
Here’s a list of common technical issues associated with most VPN apps and their solutions:
1. Checking subscription validity
One of the simplest yet fairly common reason why you can’t connect to VPN is a failed subscription attempt. If you’ve set your account to auto-renewal, it’s possible that the attempt failed and you didn’t realize it.
To make sure your subscription and account are still active, you should log into the user panel on your VPN provider’s official website and see if your account status is still active.
If not, then you should contact customer support or make the payment for a new subscription if you’ve actually failed to do so.
2. Make sure you’re connected to the internet
Before you start cursing your VPN, make sure if you’re actually able to use the web without a VPN connected. It sounds obvious but you’d be surprised how many people get ready to ditch a VPN service only to find out later that they weren’t even connected to the internet!
So, make sure that your internet is working fine when your VPN connection is inactive. If you’re normally able to surf the web without any problems, then the issue is most definitely with the VPN. Otherwise, you just need to give your ISP a call and get the internet fixed. That will probably be enough to allow you to use a VPN and find it working perfectly fine.
3. Switching servers
Specific servers in a VPN’s network can go offline without any prior notice. The good thing is that all the leading providers in the industry offer multiple servers within the same or nearby locations. So if your VPN doesn’t work, you should always try out multiple server locations. This often all that is needed to fix the problem.
PureVPN stands out in this regard, as it has a network of servers encompassing 140+ countries with a total 2,000+ servers. As such, you can always easily find a replacement server if any one of these is down in PureVPN’s network.
So, if your preferred location is down for some reason, you can use the nearest server until the other one comes back online.
4. Changing protocols
Some networks may block certain VPN protocols and lead to connection problems. Most VPN providers have offer multiple protocols which commonly include OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), IKEv2, L2TP/IPsec, and PPTP.
If your provider offers both UDP and TCP OpenVPN protocols, the first change you should try is to switch to one or the other of these protocols. In some regions, especially the Middle East, UDP traffic is blocked.
On the other hand, some ISPs may block TCP traffic. Therefore, experimenting with different protocols can often fix connectivity problems if certain protocols are actually being blocked by ISPs.
However, keep in mind that L2TP and PPTP are not no longer recommended protocols in this day and age and are considered outdated due to inherent security vulnerabilities. So, you should only use these if absolutely necessary.
5. Firewall/security software conflicts
Security software like firewalls and antimalware programs can either outright block your VPN connection or slow it down.
To resolve this problem, you should add your VPN app in the list of exceptions in your firewall/antimalware. This will force the security software to ignore your VPN connection while it continues to protect you from malware.
6. Updating the VPN app
It’s important to keep all apps updated. But when it comes to VPNs, it’s doubly important because they contain bug fixes as well as security improvements. What’s the point of a VPN that is itself vulnerable to security exploits?
But other than that, an outdated VPN app tends to exhibit buggy behavior such as frequent disconnections and poor connectivity in general. If you’re running an older version of your VPN app and experiencing issues, updating the app should definitely be the first thing to do.
7. Exceeding the multi-login limit
Many VPN providers allow multi-login functionality whereby you can connect to multiple devices simultaneously using the same VPN account. But there is generally an upper-limit to how many devices you can connect.
If you exceed the limit, you naturally won’t be able to login to the VPN on another device until you sign out of the VPN from other devices.
So make sure you don’t share your VPN subscription with more friends than the upper-limit allows!
The only exception to this rule is Surfshark, which can support an unlimited number of simultaneous connections, so you can never exceed the limit.
VPN Not Working with Netflix
Netflix blocks IP addresses of many popular VPN services which causes an annoying error that will deny you access to your favorite shows.
So what do you do if you’re unable to access Netflix with your VPN?
The first thing to note is that not all VPNs are effective for gaining access to Netflix. In fact, Netflix has one of the most powerful anti-VPN filters in place and VPN providers have to work extremely hard to keep up pace with it.
Surfshark is one of the best VPNs for Netflix, but there are other options as well. You should also remember that for each VPN that is compatible with Netflix, there are certain servers that work best for streaming on Netflix. To find out these servers, the customer support of a given provider can help you the best.
So there you have it: a list of common VPN-related issues and their easy fixes. However, these solutions are written in a general context. If you’re a subscriber of a particular VPN and want to fix issues with it, check out the following guides written specifically for different VPN services.