Windows 11 is here, and the free upgrade is in the process of being rolled out to eligible devices. New features include snap layouts (arrange multiple windows in different layouts on the screen) and the option to download Android apps. Some Windows 11 features require a Microsoft account, which may mean some data harvesting. Windows isn’t the most privacy-friendly operating system on the market, which is why using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is all the more important.
A VPN lets you use Windows 11 while protecting your privacy. It does this by encrypting all of your internet traffic. Once you connect to a VPN server, you’re provided a new, temporary IP address. This makes it look as if you’re browsing from another location. Not only does this allow you to browse anonymously, it’s also great for unblocking geo-restricted or even government-censored content.
We’ll soon take a closer look at the best VPNs for Windows 11. First, here’s a short summary of each in case you’re looking to make a quick decision.
Best VPNs for Windows 11:
- NordVPN: The best VPN for Windows 11. Fast with 5,000+ servers globally. Split tunneling, specialty servers, and a strict no-logs policy. 24/7 support is also included.
- Surfshark: Best value VPN. Fastest server speeds and unlimited simultaneous connections. Double VPN servers and 24/7 support. Offers an antivirus for Windows.
- ExpressVPN: Servers in 94 countries. High-speed connections for streaming. Easy-to-use app for Windows. Strong security with encryption. 24/7 live chat support.
- CyberGhost: 7,000+ servers in 90 countries. Unlimited bandwidth and can be used on seven devices at once. Security suite for Windows which includes an antivirus.
- IPVanish: Connect all of your devices at the same time. Good, unthrottled speeds. Secure with encryption and a kill switch feature. 24/7 live chat and email support.
- PrivateVPN: Fast speeds and reliable unblocking. Excellent, user-friendly apps for Windows and Android. Strict no-logs policy ensures the protection of your privacy.
- Hotspot Shield: Provides servers in 80 countries. 24/7 support and doesn’t keep identifying logs. Features include a password manager and spam call blocker.
- 1 Best VPNs for Windows 11
- 2 How to use a VPN with Windows 11
- 3 Methodology: How we found the best VPNs for Windows 11
- 4 Best VPNs for Windows 11: FAQs
- 5 Why do I need a VPN with Windows 11?
- 6 Can I use a free VPN with Windows 11?
- 7 How do I set up a VPN in Windows 11?
- 8 Is NordVPN compatible with Windows 11?
- 9 Does Windows 11 give a free VPN?
- 10 What should I do if my Windows 11 VPN isn’t working?
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Many VPNs offer Windows apps. However, we found the very best VPNs for Windows 11 by looking for those that fulfil the following criteria:
- Fast server speeds and unlimited bandwidth
- Servers in dozens of countries worldwide
- High level of security with encryption
- Protects privacy with a strict no-logs policy
- Live chat and email support (preferably 24/7)
- Risk-free money-back guarantee of at least 30 days
We go into more detail on our exact testing process below.
Best VPNs for Windows 11
Here’s our list of the best VPNs for Windows 11:
NordVPN is our top recommendation for use with Windows 11. It offers user-friendly apps for a variety of operating systems including Windows. With some 5,000 servers in 60 countries, there’s no shortage of options, making it easy for you to unblock geo-restricted websites and services. One of the faster VPNs we’ve tested, this service is highly suitable for streaming and torrenting. Note that it works particularly well with the likes of Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
You’ll find plenty of features with NordVPN including split tunneling, which lets you choose which apps and URLs you want to protect. There’s comprehensive security thanks to 256-bit AES encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch. It has even been independently audited to prove it doesn’t keep any logs. Need any help when setting up or using your Windows app? You can always get in touch with NordVPN’s 24/7 support, available via live chat and email.
Aside from Windows, NordVPN offers apps for Android, Mac, iOS, Linux, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. Chrome and Firefox browser extensions are available. While also compatible with wireless routers, manual configuration is required.
- Over 5,000 servers in 60 countries worldwide
- Fast, unthrottled speeds for streaming and torrenting
- Works with popular streaming services such as Netflix
- Split tunneling so you can choose which apps and URLs to protect
- Specialty servers including P2P and Double VPN
- Comprehensive security offering which includes encryption
- Victim of a data breach in 2018
BEST VPN FOR WINDOWS 11:NordVPN is our top pick. It’s fast, with more than 5,000 servers. Reliable unblocking of content and offers specialty P2P and Double VPN servers. 24/7 support included. No-logs service which you can try risk-free thanks to the 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full NordVPN review.
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Surfshark is our top budget pick. This younger VPN provider has grown to offer more than 3,000 servers in 65 countries. It also happens to be the fastest VPN of any of the best VPNs for Windows. As such, it’s ideal for online activities that rely on speed such as streaming and torrenting. Not only will you be able to secure your Windows PC, you can connect all of your devices, because Surfshark allows unlimited simultaneous connections per account.
The easy-to-use interface of Surfshark’s Windows app makes it a particularly beginner-friendly option. Better still, 24/7 live chat and email support is available. Browsing the web comes with some security risks but Surfshark offers 256-bit AES encryption, protection from DNS and IPv6 leaks, and a kill switch. Furthermore, this no-logs VPN has recently introduced Surfshark One, a security suite that includes an antivirus for Windows.
You can access Surfshark via its app for Windows. Alternatively, apps are also offered for Android, Mac, iOS, Linux, Android TV, and Amazon Fire TV. Browser extensions can be downloaded for Chrome and Firefox. Works with select routers but requires manual setup.
- The fastest VPN for use with Windows
- Lets you connect as many devices as you want at once
- Reliable unblocking of popular streaming services
- Double VPN servers for an extra layer of encryption
- Includes 24/7 support via live chat and email
- Switching servers is sometimes slow
BEST VALUE VPN:Surfshark offers the fastest servers and allows unlimited simultaneous connections. Double VPN servers available for extra security. Includes 24/7 support and even has a security suite with an antivirus for Windows. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full Surfshark review.
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ExpressVPN offers excellent apps for desktop and mobile, Windows included. Once signed up, you’ll have access to more than 3,000 servers, which are spread across 94 countries (perfect when you’re traveling abroad). The particularly reliable and high-speed connections combined with unlimited bandwidth mean you can browse, stream, and download without restriction. Unlike some VPN services, ExpressVPN works with the likes of Netflix.
With an ExpressVPN subscription, you have 24-hour access to live chat and email support. You’re also protected from security threats because all of your internet traffic is secured with 256-bit AES encryption. Further security features include DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak protection and a kill switch. Aside from being particularly easy to use with Windows, ExpressVPN is one of the best VPNs for routers and comes with an interactive router setup guide.
Secure up to five devices at once with ExpressVPN apps for desktop (Windows, Mac, and Linux) and mobile (Android and iOS). Amazon Fire TV and Android TV apps are also available, as are Chrome and Firefox browser extensions and custom router firmware.
- Server network covers 94 countries
- High-speed servers as well as unlimited bandwidth
- Works with the likes of Netflix and BBC iPlayer
- Excellent 24-hour live chat and email support
- Doesn’t keep identifying logs of users
- More expensive than most VPNs on this list
STRONG ALL-ROUNDER:ExpressVPN is particularly easy to use with Windows and has more than 3,000 servers in 94 countries. Works with many popular streaming services. Includes 24-hour support and doesn’t keep identifying logs of users. Comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full ExpressVPN review.
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CyberGhost is compatible from Windows 11 (and all the way back to Windows 7) and provides a Windows app for you to use. With it, you’ll have a choice of more than 7,000 servers across 90 countries—more servers than any other VPN listed. There’s no bandwidth throttling to speak of and this VPN is compatible with streaming services such as Netflix US and BBC iPlayer. You can use CyberGhost on more than just your Windows PC—it allows up to seven simultaneous connections.
With CyberGhost, you’re protected from all kinds of cybercriminals and snoopers. It operates a strict no-logs policy, while all of the data traveling from your device to its servers is 256-bit AES encrypted. You can also expect DNS and IPv6 leak protection as well as a kill switch feature. Notably, CyberGhost also offers a security suite specifically for Windows. This includes an antivirus, privacy guard, and security updater, while 24/7 support is also available.
Connect to CyberGhost servers via its apps for Windows, Android, Mac, iOS, Linux, Android TV, and Amazon Fire TV. Chrome and Firefox browser extensions are included. This VPN can be manually configured to work with your wi-fi router.
- Huge network of 7,000 servers in 90 countries globally
- Stream the likes of Netflix US without lag or buffering
- Can be used on up to seven devices at the same time
- Offers a security suite specifically for Windows
- Live chat and email support around the clock
- Doesn’t work reliably in China
WINDOWS SECURITY SUITE:CyberGhost has 7,000+ servers in 90 countries. Unlimited bandwidth and up to seven simultaneous connections permitted. 24/7 support, a strict no-logs policy, and a Windows security suite with antivirus. Comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full CyberGhost review.
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IPVanish provides an app for Windows and now supports WireGuard protocol for even faster connections. Add to this its unlimited bandwidth and you’ve got a VPN that allows you to stream without lag or buffering. This VPN’s network is made up of approximately 1,900 servers across 75+ locations. However, one of the biggest benefits of using IPVanish is that you’ll be able to connect an unlimited number of devices at the same time.
Once connected to IPVanish, you can enjoy comprehensive security. This includes 256-bit AES encryption, a kill switch, and DNS leak protection. It operates a zero-logs policy to ensure your privacy is protected at all times. IPVanish couldn’t be simpler to use and even offers the option to automatically connect to the best (i.e. the fastest) available server. If you need help, note that live chat and support are available to you 24 hours a day.
IPVanish apps can be found for Windows and Android as well as Mac, iOS, and Amazon Fire TV. Want to use it with Linux or your wireless router? IPVanish provides manual setup instructions for you to do so.
- Good speeds and now supports WireGuard protocol
- Unlimited simultaneous connections per account
- Servers available in dozens of countries
- Highly secure with encryption and a no-logs policy
- Headquartered in a Five Eyes country (USA)
- No browser extensions available
UNLIMITED DEVICES:IPVanish provides good , consistent connections and servers in over 75 locations. Unlimited devices per account. High level of security through a combination of encryption, kill switch, and zero-logs policy. 24/7 support. 30-day money-back guarantee.
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PrivateVPN is a particularly fast VPN for use with Windows. Server speeds are such that you can stream in high resolution without having to contend with performance issues. With servers in dozens of countries including the US, it’s well placed to access popular websites including streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+. If you want to secure more than just your Windows computer, it’s worth knowing up to six simultaneous connections are allowed.
This VPN’s Windows app is particularly easy to navigate. Connecting to a server or adjusting settings needn’t take more than a few seconds. Support is available via live chat and email should you need assistance, while there’s also remote help and installation. Regarding security, PrivateVPN ticks all of the boxes with 256-bit AES encryption, kill switch, and DNS leak protection. It’s possible to sign up anonymously by using a throwaway email and paying in Bitcoin.
PrivateVPN offers beginner-friendly apps for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. You can also use it with Linux or your router although this does require manual configuration.
- Fast speeds for streaming and torrenting
- Works well with the likes of Netflix and Disney+
- Beginner-friendly app for Windows
- No-logs policy allows you to stay anonymous
- Offers fewer servers — just 200 in total
- Live chat isn’t available 24 hours a day
STREAMING-FRIENDLY:PrivateVPN provides fast servers and strong unblocking. Beginner-friendly apps for Windows, Android, and more. Offers a strict no-logs policy and accepts payment in Bitcoin. Fast live chat and email support. 30-day money-back guarantee.
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Hotspot Shield provides servers in 80 countries, so you can access a wide range of geo-blocked content while traveling abroad. Unlimited bandwidth means consistent connections regardless of whether you’re browsing or streaming. Speaking of streaming, Hotspot Shield successfully unblocks Amazon Prime Video and Hulu. With an account, you can secure up to five of your devices (including your Windows PC) at once.
This service has 24/7 support, which can be reached via live chat and email. You also have access to a wealth of security features, ensuring your online safety. These include 256-bit AES encryption, DNS leak protection, and a kill switch. Note that Hotspot Shield doesn’t keep any identifying logs of its users. It also provides some additional features such as a password manager and spam call blocker.
Hotspot Shield can not only be used with Windows but Android, Mac, iOS, Linux, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. There’s also a Chrome browser extension. Use with home wi-fi routers requires manual setup.
- Servers in 80 countries including the US
- Unblock Amazon Prime Video and Hulu from abroad
- Lots of security features including a password manager
- Doesn’t keep any logs by which you can be identified
- Some past privacy concerns
- No Firefox browser extension
EXTRA FEATURES:Hotspot Shield servers are located across 80 countries. It offers user-friendly apps for desktop and mobile, Windows included. 24/7 live chat and email support. Extra features including a password manager. 45-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full Hotspot Shield review.
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How to use a VPN with Windows 11
Using a VPN with Windows 11 is much the same as with previous versions of Windows. In fact, signup and setup shouldn’t take more than a few minutes.
Here’s how you can use a VPN with Windows 11:
- First, choose a VPN provider that offers an app for Windows (most VPNs do). We particularly recommend NordVPN.
- Once signed up, you’ll have the option to download the VPN’s Windows app. All of the VPNs listed allow multiple simultaneous connections.
- Log in to the VPN app and connect to a server. Your internet traffic will now be encrypted and you’ll have a new, temporary IP address.
- You can now browse and stream securely on Windows 11. If you have any issues accessing geo-blocked content, try clearing your browser’s cookies.
- Still having trouble? Your VPN’s customer support may be able to provide further guidance.
Methodology: How we found the best VPNs for Windows 11
Most VPNs offer apps for desktop and mobile (such as Windows). However, it should be noted that not all are compatible with Windows 11. As such, this was the starting point in our search for the best VPNs for Windows 11. To narrow down the options further, we also looked for the following:
- Servers worldwide: Any quality VPN should provide servers across dozens of countries so you can access a wide range of content, regardless of your geographical location. This should include countries such as the US and UK for accessing popular streaming services.
- Speed: We prioritize VPNs that have fast server speeds, as this means you can use them for more than just basic browsing. High-speed VPN connections are suitable for streaming and torrenting. It’s also important that each VPN has unlimited bandwidth so you won’t face any restrictions.
- Unblocking: While some websites and services are very easy to unblock, others actively blacklist shared IP addresses of VPNs. Despite this, the best VPNs for Windows 11 constantly look for ways around this. As such, you should still be able to access the likes of BBC iPlayer.
- Security: Windows is vulnerable to security threats. Chances are you’ve suffered from viruses, for example. A VPN provides a layer of security in that it encrypts your data and protects you from leaks. Some VPNs offer extra features including ad blockers and Double VPN servers.
- Privacy: Windows isn’t particularly privacy friendly. If you’d rather your browsing data isn’t seen by your ISP or shared with third parties, a VPN can help. Having looked at more than 140 VPN logging policies, we know which VPNs let you browse anonymously (and which don’t).
- Ease of use: The VPNs covered in this article are easy to use because they offer beginner-friendly apps for Windows (and various other operating systems). Moreover, each has 24/7 support which you can contact via live chat and email for quick and easy resolutions to issues.
- Value for money: Even if a VPN offers all of the above features, it doesn’t mean it should offer anything other than affordable, value for money subscriptions. You should be able to choose between long and short-term plans and with our VPN discount coupons, you can even save a little extra.
Best VPNs for Windows 11: FAQs
Why do I need a VPN with Windows 11?
It’s important to use a VPN with Windows 11 in order to be able to browse securely. Windows is vulnerable to security threats, be it malware, phishing attempts, or viruses. Using a VPN ensures your data is encrypted and cannot be compromised. This is also important because Microsoft isn’t exactly known for being privacy friendly. Having your data encrypted and protected by a strict no-logs policy gives you the chance to stay anonymous online.
Can I use a free VPN with Windows 11?
While you can use a free VPN with Windows 11, we don’t recommend it. First, free VPNs offer only a limited number of servers so you may struggle to unblock content from some countries. Furthermore, speeds tend to be slow due to bandwidth throttling, making them highly unsuitable for streaming. Last but not least, free VPNs may not properly encrypt your data while some keep logs of your browsing data, selling the information to third parties.
How do I set up a VPN in Windows 11?
Setting up a VPN in Windows 11 is as simple as signing up with a VPN provider, downloading the VPN’s Windows app, and installing it on your Windows device. You can then sign in and connect to a server in your preferred location. Once connected, your internet traffic is encrypted and you can also enjoy the additional benefit of being able to unblock geo-restricted and government-censored websites and services.
Is NordVPN compatible with Windows 11?
Yes, NordVPN is compatible with Windows 11 (and all versions going back to Windows 7). Its Windows app makes it quick and easy to secure your Windows browsing experience. Aside from Windows, NordVPN also works with Android, Mac, iOS, and Linux. Better still, you can connect as many as six of your devices simultaneously via a single NordVPN account.
Does Windows 11 give a free VPN?
While Windows 11 does have the built-in ability to function as a VPN, it’s quite limited compared to the VPNs listed in this post. Furthermore, it requires manual configuration so it’s not as beginner-friendly. To find it, go to Settings > Network and Internet > VPN.
What should I do if my Windows 11 VPN isn’t working?
If your Windows 11 VPN isn’t working, don’t panic. First, try re-installing the VPN software (and make sure you’re not connected to another VPN). Disable your antivirus and firewall programs one at a time to make sure they’re not interfering with the VPN connection (you may need to add it as an exception before enabling them again). Last but not least, if you’re not using one of the VPNs listed, it may be that it’s not compatible with Windows 11.