7 Best VPN’s For Windows: Pros and Cons

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James H | Updated: March 27, 2020

Privacy and Security Specialist

The internet is festooned with VPN services that claim to be the best VPN for windows, a way to protect your internet traffic from snoops, big tech, and your local government. Since it’s so easy to set up your own VPN, just about anyone can start a business claiming to protect your traffic. 

The average user has to be overwhelmed with all the options. Don’t worry. I’m here to help you figure out which of the most popular VPN’s for Windows is best for you. The most popular VPN’s for Windows become the best VPN’s for Windows when they have these essential features:

  • An easy-to-use windows app
  • A kill switch to protect your IP address from getting out
  • Support for mobile devices and tablets (Who wants to buy a separate VPN just for your other devices?)
  • Fast servers in the locations you need
  • No logging policy
  • The strongest encryption protocols to protect your data
  • Excellent value for the money

Each of the VPN’s on this list has unlimited bandwidth, a kill switch, and a zero-logging policy. They’re must-haves in any VPN. 

All of these most popular VPN’s for Windows are likely to work well for you. This guide is designed to help you choose the most effect, best service for your particular needs from among the popular VPN’s for Windows. 

Here is my list of the most popular VPN’s for Windows:

  • NordVPN: A popular and dependable VPN
  • ExpressVPN: Famously fast VPN
  • IPVanish: A VPN that offers 10 simultaneous connections
  • Surfshark: Works for more than 15 global streaming services
  • PrivateVPN: Stealth mode to hide that you’re using a VPN
  • VyprVPN: Privately owns all their servers
  • Zenmate: Stream everything, including live sports

1. NordVPN

Features:
  • Windows app: Excellent app with one-click connection
  • Windows versions: Windows 7 and later
  • Devices: 6 simultaneous devices
  • Torrenting and streaming:: Yes
  • Servers and Locations: 5,359 servers in 58 countries– Mostly in Europe and North America
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Chrome, Firefox, Router
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPsec, Socks5 proxy
  • Price: Between $3.45 and $11.95 a month

NordVPN Review

NordVPN for Windows is one of the most popular VPN”s on the market. It’s excellent reputation means that you can’t go wrong with it on server speed, reliability, security, and connectivity. It’s easy to see why it’s among the best VPN’s for Windows. 

Intuitive Windows App

The NordVPN for Windows app is well-designed and easy to use. It’s one-click connection button means that anyone, despite their skill with tech, can use the VPN without a problem. The quality app alone makes this a best VPN for windows. 

If you want to get into the weeds, you can, though. The NordVPN for windows app gives users the option to choose different security protocols, like OpenVPN, Ikev2/IPsec, or Socks5 proxy to balance security and speed. 

Extreme Privacy Protection

NordVPN for Windows has an excellent record with privacy. Like all the VPN’s on my list, they have a no-log policy, and they use excellent encryption. Even if they didn’t, NordVPN is based in Panama, which is outside the major intelligence sharing treaties, called 5, 9, or 14 Eyes nations. It also has software, called CyberSec, that blocks malware, trackers, and ads.

Vast Array Of Servers And Locations

Any best VPN for windows needs to have a wide network of servers and locations. NordVPN has one of the largest networks of servers in the market with 5,359 servers in 58 countries. Most of their locations are in North America and Europe, but there are a few locations in Africa, China, India, and the Middle East, areas not commonly covered by most VPN’s. 

Excellent Streaming and Torrenting Support

NordVPN has excellent streaming support, so it’s a great way to watch your favorite streaming service or to get around a geo-blocked content. NordVPN also supports P2P systems, but they do it through specialized servers. 

NordVPN Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Excellent reputation
  • Fast, live chat support
  • Quality windows app

Cons

  • Few locations in China and the Middle East
  • Only 6 simultaneous connections


2. ExpressVPN

Features:
  • Windows App: Yes
  • Windows versions: Supports Windows 7 and later
  • Devices: 5 simultaneous devices
  • No logging policy: Yes
  • Torrenting and Streaming: Yes
  • Servers and locations: 3,000+ servers, 160 locations, 98 countries
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Chrome, Firefox
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, L2TP/IPsec, PPTP, IKEv2 
  • Price: Between $6.67 and $12.95 a month

ExpressVPN Review

ExpressVPN is the fastest on this list of best VPN’s for Windows. It’s an excellent Windows app, security, and speed make it a great choice. 

Intuitive ExpressVPN For Windows App

The ExpressVPN for Windows App is well designed and easy to use. It opens to a one-click connection button, but it also makes it easy to switch between servers and locations, so anyone, even the tech illiterate, can use it. The app works with Windows versions 7 and later, too.

Privacy-Friendly Location

ExpressVPN takes your privacy just as seriously as you do. Like all every best VPN for windows on this list, they have a no-logs policy, a kill switch, and no way for snoops to get to your information. Even better, ExpressVPN for Windows is based in the British Virgin Isles, a privacy-friendly country. Both their policies and the legal codes of their home nation make ExpressVPN perfect for privacy.

Servers And Locations Are The Fastest

ExpressVPN has more server locations and countries than most other VPN’s, but they have fewer total servers for all those locations. Still, ExpressVPN manages to be one of the fastest VPN’s for Windows. 

ExpressVPN stands out most in it’s options in locations that most VPN’s don’t have. They have more options in China, India, Africa, and the Middle East than the rest of the services on this list. If you can’t live without your local China TV, ExpressVPN might be the right choice for you. 

Just 5 Simultaneous Devices

ExpressVPN for Windows falls short in its simultaneous connections. They only support 5 devices at a time, which is very small for the way we use devices. Honestly, it’s surprising that a quality service like ExpressVPN hasn’t updated this feature to meet today’s needs. 

ExpressVPN Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Fastest VPN on the list
  • Easy-to-use VPN for windows app
  • Numerous locations

Cons

  • More expensive than the competition
  • Only 5 simultaneous devices


3. IPVanish

Features:
  • Windows app: Yes
  • Windows support: Windows 7 SP and later
  • Devices: 10 simultaneous connections
  • Torrenting and streaming: Yes
  • Servers and locations: 1,300+ servers in 75+ locations
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, Chrome OS, Windows Phone, iOS, Android, Fire TV, router
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, IPSec, PPTP, Socks5 proxy
  • Price: Between $3.99 and $10.00 a month

IPVanish Review

IPVanish for Windows distinguishes itself among the many competitors by the number of devices it supports. While it might lack in other areas, the simultaneous connections and low cost is what puts it on this list of best VPN’s for windows.

Intimidating Windows App

Most VPN’s offer a simple app with few options that make it easy for average users to connect. IPVanish’s app looks much more complicated, which can be intimidating for new users. 

It doesn’t just look complicated, though. The site has a series of tutorial videos to help get started with IPVanish for Windows. Most apps have a simple “connect” button. With one click, it automatically connects the user to the best connection. IPVanish for Windows is much more complicated, requiring a series of dialog boxes and drop-down menus. 

Supports Routers And TV

If you don’t mind navigating the more complicated options that IPVanish offers, it does give you more ways to use the VPN than the others. This is the first of the best VPN for Windows list that supports routers and Fire TV.

A router app means that you can direct all of your traffic through the router to go to a VPN, so every device connected to your network goes through that VPN. You can also use your smart TV or Fire Stick to access geo-blocked content without going through your windows device. 

Middle-of-the-Road Cost

At the time of writing, IPVanish for Windows costs between $3.99 a month, for a 1-year commitment, and $10.00 a month on a month-to-month basis. NordVPN has a similarly low cost per month, but the commitment is much, much longer, 3 years! IPVanish is only 1 year for the same price. That said IPVanish only offers a 7-day, money-back guarantee, so you have to decide quickly whether this VPN is the best VPN for Windows.

IPVanish Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Smart TV’s and Routers
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • Video tutorials and live-chat customer service
  • 1-year commitment for lowest cost subscription

Cons

  • Complicated windows app
  • Short guarantee period


4. Surfshark

Features:
  • Windows app: Yes
  • Windows support: Windows 7 and later
  • Devices: Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Streaming and torrenting: Yes
  • Servers and locations: 1040 servers in 61+ countries
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, Chrome OS, Windows Phone, iOS, Android, Chrome, Firefox, PS 4, Xbox, FireTV
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPSec
  • Price: Between $1.77 and $11.95 a month

Surfshark Review

Surfshark is the best VPN for Windows because it focuses on a few key areas to outdo its competition. The short version? Surfshark supports smart TV’s and consoles, and it focuses on unlocking streaming services around the globe.

Clunky Windows App

Surfshark for Windows app doesn’t have the grace and design that you get from ExpressVPN or NordVPN, but it’s much easier to use than IPVanish. There is a quick-connect button, and it’s easy to navigate to other locations without diving through complicated menus. 

Camouflage Mode Hides VPN Traffic

Surfshark goes an extra step to keep your traffic private and gives you the option to use a VPN even in highly regulated countries. No Borders Mode lets users work in countries that don’t allow or heavily regulate VPN’s. It also gives you the option to direct your traffic through a few servers before you get to the final destination. Camouflage mode keeps even your ISP from knowing that you are using a VPN. 

It’s all designed to give an extra boost to your security. If you’re in a highly regulated country, it’s worth checking into Surfshark’s security to see if it’s the best VPN for Windows in your situation. 

Unlimited Simultaneous Devices

Surfshark offers unlimited simultaneous connections, and it supports devices like smart TV’s and gaming consoles. You can frag your way through Call of Duty while streaming Eastern European Netflix on your TV at the same time as you torrent your favorite public domain music. Leave all that running, and you can head out to your nearest coffee shop and protect your Android phone on their public Wi-Fi. No problem. 

Unlimited connections mean you can expand your devices without worry. As more of our devices go online, you will need the flexibility to protect them, too, with unlimited connections. 

Surfshark Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • PS4 and Xbox support
  • Low cost
  • Long list of supported streaming services

Cons

  • Fewer servers and locations


5. PrivateVPN

Features:
  • Windows App: Yes
  • Windows Support: Windows XP and later
  • Devices: 6 simultaneous connections
  • Streaming and Torrenting: Yes
  • Servers and locations: 150 server locations in 60 countries
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Routers, Kodi 
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, IKEv2, PPTP, L2TP/IPsec
  • Price: Between $1.87 and $10.95 a month

PrivateVPN Review

PrivateVPN for Windows focuses on their specialized streaming servers, which are optimized to give their customers the best streaming experience over their network. Add their incredible record of privacy and security, and you get a best VPN for Windows.

Complicated Windows App

The PrivateVPN for Windows app is not the best app I have used from the range of VPN’s. Most of these best VPN’s for Windows have a simple app with only one button to connect them to the best default location. While PrivateVPN looks nice, it also doesn’t have that simple, one-click button, so novice VPN users might find it challenging from the start. 

On the other hand, the app makes it easy to change some advanced options right from the front window. Location and encryption protocol are there right when you open it up. If you’re comfortable with navigating those features, it works well. One feature I love: It has a handy countdown of the days left on your subscription. 

One thing some users might like, PrivateVPN works for Windows XP, which none of the other VPN’s on the list support.

Streaming Bonus

 PrivateVPN for Windows wants to ensure that you can get past censorship blocks and VPN filters that keep you from the content you want. PrivateVPN works hard to give users as much access as possible while keeping data secure. 

To help with that, PrivateVPN offers “stealth mode” which hides that you’re connected to a VPN. That can help you get past the ever-better filters on streaming sites, but it’s especially important if you’re in a country which sensors the internet. Stealth mode can keep government filters from blocking your traffic when they decide you’re using a VPN. 

Low-Cost VPN, Too

PrivateVPN for Windows is one of the lowest cost VPN’s on the list, at least for their 24 month plan. At the time of writing, you can get it as low as $1.89 a month. While this best VPN for Windows doesn’t have all as many servers and locations as others, I can’t argue with that price.  

PrivateVPN Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Low cost
  • Stealth mode to get past content blocks
  • Optimized streaming servers

Cons

  • Complicated Windows app
  • Only 6 simultaneous connections


6. VyprVPN

Features:
  • Windows app: Yes
  • Windows support: Windows 7 and later
  • Devices: 5 simultaneous connections
  • Streaming and Torrenting: Yes
  • Servers and locations: 700+ servers in more than 70 countries
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Routers
  • Protocol: OpenVPN™, IKEv2, L2TP/IPsec, PPTP, and Chameleon™
  • Price: Between $2.50 and $12.95 a month

VyprVPN Review

VyprVPN for Windows’s biggest selling point, in addition to the standard performance and great security features, is that they own all their physical equipment. A big deal among our best VPN for Windows.

Windows App Combines Information And Usability

VyprVPN finds an excellent balance between usability and tech options. Their app displays a lot of information, but it also has a simple, one-click connection button right at the top. If you like to monitor your IP address and encryption protocols, you can. If you just want to connect and go, that works, too. 

Physical Security, too

It’s easy for a VPN to expand their network by renting some cloud servers somewhere, but there’s a down side. The company that owns that server has access to their user’s information. If the owner is devious, your information might be at risk.

VyprVPN for Windows might not have the most extensive server list, but they own all of their physical servers. No one outside their organization has access to the servers, so you can rest assured that their top-notch encryption and security are backed up by physical security, too. They’re also based in Switzerland, a very privacy-friendly country.

Chameleon To Slip Past Censors

PrivateVPN is a best VPN for Windows, because they developed their own encryption protocol, using OpenVPN, to bypass government filters that block VPN traffic, called Chameleon. When governments, ISP’s, or streaming sites inspect your traffic, they won’t be able to see that you’re using a VPN, keeping the internet open and free. It’s especially important if you use their locations in places like China, which heavily censor the internet. 

Middle of the Road Cost

VyprVPN costs about average for a best VPN for Windows, between $2.50 a month for 24 months and $12.95 on a month-to-month basis. It costs a lot to test the service before committing to a 2-year contract. 

VyprVPN Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Chameleon to slip past government censorship
  • Physically owns servers
  • Windows app

Cons

  • Only 5 simultaneous connections
  • High month-to-month costs


7. ZenMate

Features:
  • Windows app: Yes
  • Windows versions: Windows 7 and later 
  • Devices: 5 simultaneous connections
  • Streaming and Torrenting: Yes, but not in all locations
  • Servers and locations: 2,600 servers in 37+ countries
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux, Chrome OS, Windows phone, iOS, Android, Chrome, Opera, Firefox, Firestick TV 
  • Protocol: OpenVPN, IPSec, IKEv2, L2TP 
  • Price: Between $1.64 and $9.99 a month

Zenmate Review

Every best VPN for Windows on this list says that it works on streaming services, but Zenmate really focuses on their compatibility with every service, including live sports.

Beautiful Windows App

Some of the best VPN for Windows apps on this list are clunky or intimidating, but not ZenMate for Windows. Not only is it pretty, but there are only two buttons, one to connect and one for location. It’s so simple, even the most tech-illiterate person can use it with no problem. 

Watch Whatever You Want: Streaming And Torrenting

ZenMate Windows wants you to be able to watch whatever live sports you want from wherever you want. So many sports black out users from different areas of the world. ZenmMate for Windows focuses on making every streaming service work so you don’t miss a thing. 

ZenMate Windows does lack a little in torrenting, though. Many of their locations don’t support P2P traffic at all, like South Korea, Israel, or Brazil. It’s not so many that torrenting will be a bother, but you should check out the list before you subscribe.

Lowest Cost VPN Plus Free Trial

ZenMate for Windows is the lowest cost VPN on this best VPN for Windows list, with prices as low as $1.64 a month for a 3-year commitment. While that’s a looooong time to commit, they do offer a relatively inexpensive 1 year commitment for $4.49. 

Even better, ZenMate offers a true free trial, not just a money-back guarantee. This makes Zenmate stand out on this list as one of the very few that won’t charge you before you try the service. Just make the account and activate the free trial

Zenmate Review: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Lowest cost on the list
  • Extensive articles for support
  • A true free trial
  • Streaming focus on live sports

Cons

  • 3-year commitment for low-cost plan
  • Some servers don’t work with torrenting
  • Only 5 simultaneous devices


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