Linux is the operating system for computer-savvy users that want high configurability and stronger online privacy. However, even Linux isn’t immune to privacy breaches and online threats that haunt users on the web.
VPNs have become indispensable tools if you want to enhance your online privacy on Linux or any other platform. The only problem is, VPNs cost money. Wouldn’t it be great if you could consolidate your privacy with a free VPN for Linux?
Unfortunately, most VPNs available for free are risky and have found to be involved in selling user information for a profit. Nonetheless, there are still some legit free VPNs that you put to use on Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, OpenSUSE, and other Linux distros.
Best Free VPNs for Linux
The VPNs listed below offer satisfactory service for Linux, but they have some serious limitations that make them unsuitable for use in the long term. If you want complete access to advanced VPN features and rock-solid privacy, you’ll be better off with a paid VPN service as mentioned in this article on best VPNs for Linux.
For now, let’s dive into VPNs that free yet reliable for limited use on Linux computers.
Surfshark is an excellent free Linux VPN. It is one of the few VPNs that offers a native app for Linux. The app is compatible with Ubuntu and Debian distros of Linux. The catch is that Surfshark isn’t exactly free of cost, but it does offer a generous 30-day money-back guarantee that you can use to enjoy the service for a whole month for free if you demand a refund within this time frame.
The provider offers 1,040+ servers in over 60 countries, which offer strong AES-256 encryption for maximum security of users. In addition, it unblocks popular streaming services like a breeze including US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.
The service also works well for p2p file-sharing, with many servers optimized for torrenting. People who download torrents routinely can rely on Surfshark for fast downloading of files through Bit Torrent clients.
This VPN is also known for a privacy-friendly logging policy and guarantees zero-logs for Linux users that want to stay anonymous on the web. Furthermore, it uses Private DNS to ensure that the traffic and online activities of subscribers remain invisible to anyone trying to monitor it.
Surfshark is also working on implementing the upcoming advanced VPN protocol called WireGuard, which particularly promises outstanding speeds, superior performance, and stronger security for Linux.
If you decide to continue your subscription after 30 days, you won’t be able to claim a refund, but it will only set you back $1.99/mo for the 2-year plan.
For more information, see this Surfshark review.
- Native VPN app for Ubuntu & Debian
- Works with US Netflix
- Supports torrenting
- Not entirely free
Windscribe is a powerful free VPN service for Linux. It offers compatible versions for various popular Linux distros including Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora 22+, and CentOS 6+. Users can access 10 servers on the free version, all of which use 256-bit encryption to protect user data.
The downside is that it doesn’t work with Netflix or most other popular streaming apps. Moreover, it has a data cap of 10GB/month. This might seem small, but it is still better than most other free providers for Linux.
See this Windscribe VPN review for more details.
- 10 free server locations
- Native VPN client for Linux
- Average speeds
ProtonVPN is a 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 users, which works like a dedicated app in a techie way.
You can learn more about this service in our ProtonVPN review.
- Fast performance for Linux
- Strong security protocols
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Small server network
TunnelBear is a free VPN that supports Ubuntu and Fedora distros of Linux. The provider imposes a 500 MB/month limit, which is quite small. This limit can be increased to 1.5 GB if you tweet about it for promotional purposes. It has dedicated apps for Windows, macOS, Android and iOS, but not for Linux.
Although there is no TunnelBear app for Linux, it does offer limited support through manual setup. The logging policy is privacy-focused and the provider no longer requires users to provide their full name when signing up.
Overall, TunnelBear is a decent service if you want better online privacy while surfing around the web on Linux, but its small bandwidth and limited features in the free version make it unsuitable for anything more.
For more information, see this TunnelBear review.
- OpenVPN protocol offers strong security for Linux
- Stable connectivity
- Limited Linux support
Hide.Me is a Malaysian free Linux VPN. It offers a 2GB/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 as well as OpenVPN protocols for Linux Ubuntu.
As such, Hide.Me is one of the most secure VPNs for Linux, especially because of its IKEv2 support. Therefore, if you can overlook the 2 GB bandwidth limit, this VPN is worth having owing to its reliability and security.
You can learn more about this VPN in our Hide.Me review.
- Offers IKEv2 and OpenVPN protocols for Linux
- Excellent security
- No advertisements
- 2GB bandwidth limit
The Criteria for Ranking these VPNs
The free Linux VPNs that have made it into this list were chosen on the basis of a few criteria as follows:
A good logging policy is essential to have in a VPN. You can’t rely on a VPN with poor logging policy, because that leaves you vulnerable to possible exposures of personal information due to your provider’s mishandling. All the providers mentioned in this list have privacy-focused logging policies, so you can trust your data with them.
No VPN would be of any use to Linux users if it weren’t compatible with it. The providers mentioned above all offer compatibility with most popular Linux distros including Ubuntu, Mint, and more.
It is important to have a Linux VPN that deliver fast speed. All the privacy in the world isn’t worth it if a VPN slows down your internet to a crawl. The above-mentioned VPNs deliver reasonably fast speeds for free.
Why Should I Use a Free VPN?
There is no doubt that a premium affordable VPN service like Surfshark is much more reliable and offer a host of features that simply cannot be replicated by free VPN services. For instance, a reputed and premium VPN can offer servers in the range of thousands, whereas those available at zero-cost offer only a few servers that can be counted on one hand.
In addition, some free VPNs simply operate on an unethical business model where they turn consumers into a product by selling their information and injecting ads on their systems.
This is why I do not recommend these free providers unless you are confident about their reliability. If you are living in America, check this blog about free VPNs particularly for USA.
What is OpenVPN for Linux?
OpenVPN is an open-source software that can be manually configured to run most commercially available VPN providers through the OpenVPN protocol. It is available for Linux as well as Windows.
Is it difficult to install a VPN on Linux?
It is not difficult to install a VPN on Linux. All providers offer easy-to-follow instructions that you can follow the easily setup the VPN on Linux.
The Linux is an excellent operating system that is safe from many vulnerabilities that are present in other OSs. 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. Surfshark is the best free VPN for Linux if you utilize the 30-day money-back guarantee to enjoy the VPN free of cost for a month and attain strong online privacy.