Windows 7 was an exceedingly successful edition of Microsoft’s operating system for desktops and PCs. After the debacle that was Windows Vista, Microsoft redeemed itself with the visually appealing and highly functional 7.
Nonetheless, no matter which operating system you use, it is a given that most of your activities will take place on the internet. And internet, as well all know, is not a safe place if you at all value you privacy.
Enter VPN services – the tool that boosts your online privacy and obliterates website restrictions.
In this blog, I will pick for you one service that has earned the title of best VPN service to use on Windows 7. I’ll also explain the process of configuring a VPN on your Windows-7 with step by step instructions.
I have written a separate blog for Windows 10 VPN services in 2019, so users can head over to this page if you’re a Windows 10 user.
Why You Should Use a VPN?
The internet is not a safe place to be. The digital footprint you leave behind on the web can be tracked by anyone having the right resources and sufficient motivation to do so.
Privacy, it goes without saying, is essential to maintain in this precarious web environment. This is where the importance of VPN service is plainly revealed.
The encryption and IP changing action of a VPN is a great way to hide yourself and everything you do on the internet.
Another common use of VPNs is for unblocking censored websites and geo-restricted content around the world.
VPN services usually have multiple server locations in different countries, which allow you to experience the web the same way a person physically located in the country would experience.
Now, I don’t know about you, but these are pretty good reasons for getting a VPN for your Windows 7 PC.
The Best VPN Chosen for Windows 7
The VPN industry is growing with no end in sight. The sheer multiplicity of VPN services makes the competition for the top spot extremely tough for each individual provider.
I have tested dozens of VPN services to pick the one that works the best in terms of security, performance, and overall functionality.
The one VPN that deserves the title of ‘Best VPN Service for Windows 7’ is ExpressVPN. Although simple in appearance, its instant one click connectivity, 2,000+ servers, and strong AES-256 encryption are just what the top-performing VPN should deliver.
Considering the excellent performance of the VPN, it is surprisingly lightweight and won’t slow down your Windows boot time or internet connection to a noticeable degree.
In short, you can’t go wrong with ExpressVPN particularly for Windows 7.
Here are some more choices:
|VPN Providers||Price ($)||Special Deals||More Info|
Best Affordable VPN
$2.95 Per Month
Exclusive Discount 1 year Plan
Best Budget Service
$1.99 Per Month
2 Years Deal
Best for Geo-Unblocking
$2.99 Per Month
3 Years Plan
Best for Streaming
$6.67 Per Month
No Exclusive Offer
Best for Private Browsing
$2.75 Per Month
3 Years Deal
Setting up a VPN on Windows 7
We are living in an age where installation processes have simplified to a point that even a Neanderthal would probably have no difficulty setting apps up on their systems.
To install a VPN that has a dedicated Windows app like ExpressVPN, all you need to do is to download the setup from the official page of the provider and commence the installation.
But what if you’re interested in a different VPN service; one that has no dedicated app? For instance, your office might have a private VPN connection of their own which their corporate network is wired to.
In this case, you will need to set it up manually.
Instructions for PPTP, L2TP, SSTP, or IKEv2 VPN Setup
These are the steps you will need to take:
- Open the Start menu and type “VPN” in the search field
- Click on Set up a Virtual Private Network (VPN) Connection on the top
- Enter the VPN server address and type a name for your VPN connection, then check “Don’t connect now”
Note: Ask your VPN provider or network administrator to get the VPN server address
- Now type in your VPN username and password (leave Domain blank) and click create
- Wait for verification of your credentials
- When finished, you will get the following screen
- Now open Network and Sharing Center and click Connect to a Network
- You should see the VPN you just configured appear in the screen. Right click on it to enter Properties
- Select the “Security” tab and choose type of VPN (preferably L2TP, SSTP, or IKEv2, as PPTP is not very secure)
- In data encryption, choose “require encryption” (you may also choose other options, but it depends on your VPN. Consult your Network Admin/VPN provider for help)
- Check Challenge Handshake Authentication Protocol (CHAP) and Microsoft CHAP Version 2 (MS-CHAP v2)
- Click on Networking tab and uncheck “Internet Version Protocol 6 (TCP/IPv6)” and “File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks”
- Now open your Network Connections, right click on the VPN you have set up and press Connect
- Enter your VPN username and password when prompted
- Congratulations! You’ve set up your VPN
Instructions for OpenVPN Setup
OpenVPN is the most popular VPN protocol that every leading VPN service uses today, owing to its open-source nature, wide degree of auditing, and speeds and security.
Since OpenVPN is an open-source VPN protocol, Windows does not offer native support for it. What you will need is a third party program called OpenVPN GUI, which you can download here.
Once downloaded, follow the steps below to install it on your Windows:
- Click the Next button to start installation
- Press I Agree button
- Click Next
- Choose a destination and press Install
- If you get the following prompt for installing TAP-Win32 Adapter, press Install
- Press Next when the installation is complete
- Click Finish and Start OpenVPN GUI
Now, you will need to download .ovpn config files which you can obtain from the official page of our VPN provider.
Once downloaded, extract the files to C:\Program Files\OpenVPN\config.
The OpenVPN GUI lives only in your taskbar. Right click on its icon in the taskbar and choose a server and click connect.
This finishes OpenVPN setup on your Windows PC.
Although Windows 10 has superseded Windows 7, it is still a widely used operating system at the both home and corporate level.
Connecting to a VPN on your Windows can significantly enhance your online privacy, and the added benefit of unblocking restricted sites is too convenient to pass on.
To recap, you can avoid all the steps I have shown above if you can find a dedicated Windows 7 app for your VPN.
If not…. well, now you know what to do.