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Free VPN for Linux

Unlike other operating systems, Linux always gets the short end of the stick when it comes to VPN support. Most VPN providers don’t support Linux distributions like Ubuntu, Fedora, and Arch. Nonetheless, there are few options costing nothing but offering reliable performance.

Linux is a secure and powerful OS, but it’s not completely free from the exploits of cybercriminals and inherent vulnerabilities. Nevertheless, it provides superior speed, performance, and privacy than other operating systems out there.

But Linux users still face online privacy threats, government censorship, and geo-restrictions on their favorite streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, etc.

We tested 60+ free VPNs for Linux, but most of them were difficult to work with. Some had congested servers, while the rest offered slow speeds. While we did find 6 free VPNs that offered us a stable service on Linux, they came with a few caveats.

If you want a VPN without any limitations, we suggest you use a premium VPN like ExpressVPN. This VPN is compatible with various Linux distros, offers unlimited bandwidth, super-fast speeds, and a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

ExpressVPN – Most recommended VPN for Linux users

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Linux and will stand out any day in terms of speed, security, features, accessibility, and performance. To access everything the internet has to offer with total anonymity and security, there’s no other than ExpressVPN. Plus, it comes with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee with 3-months free subscription on its annual subscription.

Recommended by 8500+ Linux users!


6 Best Free VPNs for Linux – Quick Overview

  1. ProtonVPN – Best Free VPN for Linux with Unlimited Bandwidth. Known to be free from privacy-invading ads. It offers servers in three locations only (The US, Japan, & Netherlands) and delivers an average speed of 89.54 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
  2. Windscribe Free Command-Line VPN with 10 GB Free Data per Month. It is available with 10 servers in 10 countries and delivers an average speed of 92.74 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
  3. TunnelBear – VPN with Easy Setup Guides for Ubuntu and Fedora. It offers servers in 23 countries and comes with 500 MB/mo bandwidth. During our testing, it delivered an average speed of 88.24 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
  4. Hide.Me Free CLI VPN Client for Linux with 10 GB/mo Data. It offers servers in 5 countries with an average speed of 86.45 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and AES-256-Bit encryption.
  5. VPNBook Free VPN for Linux Offering OpenVPN for Streaming. It offers 16 servers in 6 countries, unlimited bandwidth, and an average speed of 86.45 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
  6. Speedify  Linux VPN with Channel Bonding Technology and 2 GB/mo. It offers 53 servers in 35 countries and delivers an average speed of 85.74 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, along with AES-256 ChaCha encryption, zero-log policy, and 5 simultaneous connections.


The Best Free VPNs for Linux [2021 In-Depth Analysis]

We tested 60+ free VPNs on the basis of speeds, security, compatibility, and more to sum up a list of the most satisfactory free VPN services for Linux. Using any of these VPNs, you can get reliable security and reasonable speeds on any Linux distro you use:

1. ProtonVPNBest Free VPN for Linux with Unlimited Bandwidth

ProtonVPN

  • Unlimited free data
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • 3 server locations only (US, Japan, and the Netherlands)
  • No multi-login support
  • The free version does not support P2P
  • Email address required
  • Works with YouTube, and Kodi
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, browsers, Linux, and more

ProtonVPN is the best free VPN for Linux that offers unlimited data. The service is known for its excellent security and fast performance.

It offers a command-line tool for Linux that works with a wide range of distros, including SUSE, Fedora, CentOS, Debian, Ubuntu, and Linux Mint.

The provider has 3 servers in the free version, including the US, Japan, and the Netherlands. It is one of the few free providers that offer Dutch servers, making it one of the top VPNs for the Netherlands and in the UK.

You can use its OpenVPN package for configuration onto your Linux distros. However, don’t be surprised with its speeds, as the free plan limits connection speeds.

ProtonVPN’s privacy policy does not exactly ensure zero-logging since the company does retain certain information such as the IP address of customers. Regardless, the privacy policy page is very clearly written, and that shows the trustworthiness of the VPN.

One of the best aspects of the VPN is its AES-256 encryption, along with reasonably fast speeds for Linux-based computers. Also, it is one of the few CLI VPNs for Linux with a built-in kill switch.

Unfortunately, its free version does not support torrents. However, you can subscribe to its paid version that also offers a unique Secure Core protection, along with premium features.

You can learn more about this service in our ProtonVPN review.

2. WindscribeFree Command-Line VPN with 10 GB Free Data per Month

Windscribe

  • 10 GB free data/month
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • 10 server locations only
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Supports P2P
  • Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube, HBO
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, browsers, Linux, and more

Windscribe is a powerful free VPN service for Linux. It offers compatible versions for various popular Linux distros, including Debian, Fedora, CentOS 6+, and Ubuntu.

In addition, there are dedicated setup guides for Ubuntu available on its official website, and it also supports both OpenVPN and IKEv2. 

Users can access 10 servers on the free version, using 256-bit encryption to protect user data. It offers a 10 GB per month data allowance, which is a lot considering most free VPNs offer a limited data allowance.

Windscribe also has a fairly strong privacy policy from the point of view of the user. Although it keeps logs of some user account-related information, none of it can be associated with any specific user, and your privacy is thus safe.

Windscribe is pretty satisfactory for a free service on the speed front and is compatible with torrents. The downside is that it has a data cap of 10GB/month. Thus, although it works with US Netflix, you won’t be able to stream for more than 5 hours at best without the data running out.

See this Windscribe VPN review for more details.


3. TunnelBearVPN with Easy Setup Guides for Ubuntu and Fedora

TunnelBear

  • Servers in 23 countries
  • 500 MB free data per month
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • 5 simultaneous connections
  • Supports P2P
  • Email address required
  • Works with HBO, YouTube, Kodi, and more
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, Linux, browsers, and more

TunnelBear is a free VPN that only supports Ubuntu and Fedora distros. Linux users are not a priority for TunneBear as users with other distros like Mint, Slackware, and Gentoo cannot use this free VPN.

The provider imposes a 500 MB/month limit, which is quite less. However, this limit can be increased to 1.5 GB if you tweet about it for promotional purposes.

TunnelBear has dedicated apps for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS, but not for Linux. However, it offers limited support through the manual setup on Ubuntu.

The logging policy is privacy-focused, and the provider no longer requires users to provide their full names when signing up. The provider ceased to require a full name during sign-up after users expressed dissatisfaction with this strange anti-privacy requirement.

Overall, TunnelBear is a decent service if you want better online privacy while surfing around the web on Linux. Still, its small bandwidth and limited features in the free version make it unsuitable for anything more.

Furthermore, this VPN offers the best security features like AES 256 encryption, Vigilant Bear (malware blocking feature), and a no-logs policy.

For more information, see this TunnelBear review.


4. Hide.MeFree CLI VPN Client for Linux with 10 GB/mo Data

hide.me

  • 10 GB free data/ mo
  • 256-bit encryption
  • 4 free servers in the US, Canada, Singapore, & Netherlands
  • 1 connection per account
  • Supports P2P
  • No email address required
  • Works with Netflix Canada, YouTube, ABC, Sky Go
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, browsers, and more

Hide.Me is a Malaysian-free Linux VPN. It offers a 10 GB/month limit and 5 servers in the free version: Singapore, Canada, Netherlands, US East, and US West. Nonetheless, its strength lies in the fact that it offers IKEv2 and OpenVPN protocols for Linux Ubuntu.

This VPN is worth having if you can overlook the 10 GB bandwidth limit, owing to its reliability and security.

There are handy setup guides available for Linux users. However, the Ubunutu client only supports PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol), which is obsolete and has security issues.

With Hide.Me, there’s no compromise on your security as it offers security features such as a kill switch, AEs 256-bit encryption, DNS leak protection, and a zero-logs policy.

However, the service comes with a drawback by offering just a single connection on one user account.

You can learn more about this VPN in our Hide.Me review.


5. VPNBookFree VPN for Linux Offering OpenVPN for Streaming

VpnBook

  • Servers in 6 countries
  • Unlimited free data
  • AES 256-bit encryption
  • No Email required
  • Does not support P2P
  • Works with Netflix, HBO GO, YouTube, ITV Hub, and more
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, Linux, and more

VPNBook is a free VPN service for Linux, including Ubuntu, Debian, and Linux Mint. Linux is a great choice because it has a dedicated setup that provides users a step-by-step guide for installing the OpenVPN profile on Ubuntu.

Since its completely free and every free VPN comes with a certain disadvantage, you will have to put up with regular ads and pop-ups.

VPNBook has around 11 servers in 6 countries. Using these servers, you can access restricted streaming sites like US Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video easily.

It lacks security because it comes with 128-bit AES encryption rather than the most secure 256-bit. And, it also keeps some user logs, including IP addresses and timestamps.

To know more about this VPN, read our VPNBook review.


6. SpeedifyLinux VPN with Channel Bonding Technology and 2 GB/mo

Speedify

  • Servers in 35 countries
  • 2 GB free data per month
  • Allows torrenting
  • No email address required
  • Works with HBO, YouTube, Kodi, and more
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, Linux, browsers, and more

Speedify is another best free Linux VPN that comes with excellent security features, including AES 129-CGM encryption and IP address leak protection for maximum security and protection. In addition, it features a small server base with around 433+ servers across 35 locations. 

Speedify allows 5 simultaneous connections and is compatible with Debian, Ubuntu, and Raspbian. In fact, it is a great choice for Debian users as it can be used on Debian-based distros such as ARM and Intel. 

However, this free VPN for Linux comes with a 2GB/ month data cap, offering you only a few hours of streaming. While it could easily unblock US Netflix, it failed to work with Amazon Prime and YouTube TV on our Linux device.

The best thing about this VPN is that it offers a channel bonding technology which combines the ethernet, wi-fi, and tethered smartphones into a secure and speedy connection.

To know more about this VPN, read our Speedify review.


How Do We Choose the Best Free VPN for Linux?

The free Linux VPNs that have made it into this list were chosen based on a few criteria as follows:

1. Logging policy:

Privacy is not something that Linux users can compromise on. This is why we give the highest priority to all the VPNs’ logging policies that we recommend for Linux users.

Not all VPNs have an ideal logging policy, but all services mentioned in this list only store minimal information about you at worst.

2. Linux compatibility:

No VPN will be any good for Linux users if it supports no Linux distros. However, the VPNs are compatible with some of the most popular Linux distros, including Debian, Mint, Ubuntu, Fedora, CentOS, etc.

3. Speed:

It is important to have a Linux VPN that delivers fast speed. This is why we test all VPNs for speed before including them in any list. These VPNs for Linux were all taken into consideration after they passed benchmark speed tests.

4. Security:

Encryption is important to stay safe from breach attacks and an interception from rogue online entities. At the minimum, 128 bits of encryption length is essential with a modern standard such as AES-128. Most VPNs in this list provide an even higher level of encryption than that, i.e., AES-256.


Why do we Discourage Using a Free VPN for Linux?

Free VPNs are known to harvest your data and sell it to third parties. Advertisers then use your data to bombard you with targeted ads.

These VPNs log everything about you. What pages you visit, what services you use, what kind of products you show interest in, time stamps, and so much more.  

Free VPNs are nothing more than glorified proxies, they simply allow you to bypass some but not all geo-restrictions. 

They also impose countless restrictions. You’ll have to deal with throttled bandwidth, limited data limit, and excruciatingly slow speeds due to overcrowded servers.

Such restrictions make free VPN providers pretty much useless. For complete anonymity and a better online experience for streaming, torrenting, and gaming, free VPNs are not ideal and should be avoided at all costs.

That is why we don’t recommend using a free Linux VPN. It is always better to opt for a paid VPN that offers better security, performance without any restrictions. 

It is worth knowing that there are premium VPN providers that are super affordable and offer much better security, privacy, and performance than a free VPN can ever offer.

Some Benefits of Premium VPNs:

Free VPNs can never be better than premium VPNs. Let’s check out why:

  • Limitless bandwidth and extensive network with servers in almost all major countries.
  • High-speed network speed with server load-balancing.
  • No-log policy for complete internet privacy and security.
  • Compatible with all major operating systems and devices.

FAQs – Free VPN for Linux

There are two ways to install a free VPN for Linux, i.e., through Linux Terminal or Ubuntu Gnome.

To install a free VPN for Linux through Linux Terminal, follow the steps below:

  1. Install OpenVPN in the terminal through your packet manager. Enter: sudo apt-get install OpenVPN or sudo rpm install OpenVPN.
  2. Go to the website of the VPN provider you chose. Select the servers you want to connect to and download the OpenVPN configuration files.
  3. Now, open Terminal and navigate to the location where you downloaded the OpenVPN configuration files (.ovpn files).
  4. In the Terminal, enter: sudo openvpn [openvpn file]

And that’s it! To disconnect the VPN, close the Terminal Window in which OpenVPN is running.

To install a free VPN for Linux through Ubuntu Gnome, follow these steps:

  1. Choose a VPN provider (We recommend Surfshark) and subscribe.
  2. Choose the servers you want to connect to and download the .open configuration files.
  3. Download Ubuntu OpenVPN packages for NetworkManager. Now, open Terminal and type the following to install the packages:

sudo apt-get install network-manager-openvpn-gnome

  1. In the notification bar, click on the NetworkManager icon to check if the OpenVPN has been installed.
  2. Navigate to VPN Off > VPN Settings > VPN and click the + button. You will now see the OpenVPN option. If you cannot see the option, then restart your computer.
  3. When you see the OpenVPN option, select Import from file. Navigate to .open files and double click to add it. It will now open the “Add VPN” box with all the server details.
  4. In the Add VPN box, input your Username and Password > select Add to install the VPN.

To enable VPN, go to NetworkManager > VPN Off > Select your desired server to which you want to connect, and that’s it!

Ubuntu Privacy Remix is the most compatible Linux distro with a free VPN. UBR comes with built-in security and privacy features and is immune to malware and viruses to a great extent. If you don’t want to use Ubuntu with a free VPN, you can also go for the TAILS Linux distro.

The best free VPN services for Linux are ProtonVPN, Windscribe, and TunnelBear. All these VPNs offer quick and easy setup guides for various Linux Distros, including Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and more.

However, free VPNs come with limited bandwidth, servers, and slow speeds. To avoid these limitations, you require a premium VPN service like ExpressVPN.


Finishing Up

Linux is an excellent operating system that is safe from many vulnerabilities present in other Operating Systems. But even Linux requires assistance from tools such as VPNs to stay safe from advanced privacy-intrusive techniques applied by cybercriminals, hackers, and government agencies.

The best free VPNs for Linux are all quite capable of addressing the privacy needs of Linux users and do so admirably well for no cost at all.

However, for the most complete, optimized, and absolute security, privacy, and unblocking, you should consider getting a premium VPN service like ExpressVPN. This VPN offers 3000+ servers in 94 countries, 5 simultaneous connections, robust security features, and a 3-month free subscription on its annual plan.

Do you have a favorite VPN that is free for Linux? Mention your recommendations and experience in the comments below!