The best Linux VPN in 2024

best Linux VPN
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An essential tool for those looking to stay private and anonymous online, a Linux VPN encrypts your traffic and reroutes it through servers of its own around the world. This also allows you to virtually relocate to access geo-restricted websites and streaming services. As an increasing number of users switch to Linux for its security benefits, many of the best VPN services are ensuring that they support the platform, just like Windows and Mac. However, only a select few are really worth considering. 

My team of experts and I at Tom's Guide have reviewed and compared dozens of providers. Here, I've rounded up the top VPNs for Linux, based on native support for the OS, privacy, ease of use, and extra features like streaming unblocking and additional security software.

Read on to know everything about the VPNs worth looking at if you want to protect your Linux device, but if you're in a hurry, here are my top 3 picks right now:

Best Linux VPNs at a glance

1. Surfshark – The best Linux VPN with a GUI

1. <a href="http://get.surfshark.net/aff_c?offer_id=1030&aff_id=1691&aff_click_id=hawk-custom-tracking&aff_sub2=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="get.surfshark.net"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Surfshark – The best Linux VPN with a GUI
Surfshark is the best Linux VPN I've tested. With unlimited simultaneous connections, class-leading streaming support, and super simple apps, it's a great all-rounder. It's also seriously fast, so you won't feel any slow-down.

Surfshark is great value at less than $2.50 a month, and in case it's not for you, a 30-day money-back guarantee lets you test it out risk-free. 

2. Private Internet Access – Linux VPN with tons of servers

2. <a href="https://www.privateinternetaccess.com/offer/TomsGuide_4oo8v3r?aff_click_id=hawk-custom-tracking&aff_sub2=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="privateinternetaccess.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Private Internet Access – Linux VPN with tons of servers
Private Internet Access offers a very customizable Linux VPN app, and boasts the largest fleet of servers that I've seen in my testing. It's also very secure, thanks to open-source apps and a verified no-logs policy. 

Additionally, unlimited simultaneous connections mean that you can protect a lot of devices on a single plan. It's priced at around the $2 mark, which makes it an excellent choice for budget-conscious users, and a 30-day money-back guarantee makes the deal even sweeter.

3. Proton VPN – Very secure and great for streaming

3. <a href="https://go.getproton.me/aff_c?offer_id=25&aff_id=1046&source=tomsguide&aff_click_id=hawk-custom-tracking&url=https%3A%2F%2Fprotonvpn.com%2F%3FvisitorId%3Dho-%7Btransaction_id%7D%26aid%3D%7Baffiliate_id%7D%26offer_id%3D%7Boffer_id%7D%26url_id%3D%7Boffer_url_id%7D%26utm_campaign%3Dww-all-2a-vpn-gro_aff-g_acq-partners_program%26utm_medium%3Dlink%26utm_source%3Daid-tune-%7Baffiliate_id%7D%26utm_content%3D%7Boffer_id%7D%26hfp%3Dfalse%26spl%3D%7Baffiliate_id%7D&aff_sub2=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="protonvpn.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Proton VPN – Very secure and great for streaming
Proton VPN is based out of Switzerland, and combined with Secure Core servers, open-source apps, and an always-on VPN feature, it's a tempting proposition if you're looking for a privacy-focused VPN for your Linux. Plus, a decent number of servers and simultaneous connections add to its overall usability. 

While speeds aren't class-leading, it's able to unblock all major streaming sites with ease, and a limited yet handy free plan on top of a 30-day money-back guarantee will give you ample time to test the service risk-free before putting any money on the line. 

Recent updates

In my most recent update to this page, I've adjusted the order to reflect my most recent testing for my reviews. PIA and Proton VPN have moved up thanks to their excellent GUIs, and big names NordVPN and ExpressVPN have moved down slightly.

My expert list of the best Linux VPNs available today

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Surfshark: the best Linux VPN

Surfshark logo and the Linux penguin

(Image credit: Surfshark)

1. Surfshark

The only Linux VPN to offer a GUI

Number of servers: 3,200+ | Server locations: 100+ | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | Linux GUI: Yes

Offers an intuitive GUI
Supports unlimited devices
Cheaper than the competition
Incredibly fast connections
A couple features not available on Linux
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want a GUI for Linux: Surfshark comes with an easy-to-use graphical user interface for Linux devices, unlike top providers like ExpressVPN.

✔️ You want unlimited simultaneous connections: one Surfshark account is going to be more than enough to protect any number of devices you want. 

✔️ You want a VPN that's fast: topping out at over 950 Mbps in my most recent testing, Surfshark is seriously speedy.  

Avoid if:

❌ You want tons of configuration: Surfshark is simple and easy to use, but doesn't offer a lot for tech experts to play around with. 

❌ You don't want hefty renewal hikes: if you don't cancel and resubscribe at the end of your first term, steep renewal hikes may just break the bank for you.  

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Surfshark is my top recommendation for Linux users, thanks to a fully functional Linux VPN app, class-leading speeds, unlimited simultaneous connections, and powerful unblocking capabilities. With a sub-$2.50 price tag, it also offers excellent value for money, plus you'll have ample time to try it out risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

I consider Surfshark the best Linux VPN on the market for a number of reasons, but there's one that makes it the obvious choice – it's one of the few big-name VPNs the market to offer a fully functioning graphical user interface (GUI) on Linux.

Unlike many of its rivals, Linux users can quite simply install the application and use Surfshark just like they would on any other OS. Other providers require command-line control, and while most Linux users will be quite used to this, Surfshark's ease of use is a godsend.

Just having a GUI isn't the only reason it's topping this list, though – if it wasn't super secure and usable, I wouldn't be recommending it. 

Industry-standard AES-256 encryption keeps your traffic secure, while over 3,200 servers in 100 locations worldwide mean you'll have a vast range of countries to connect to for whatever purpose you desire. 

Camouflage mode gives you VPN obfuscation – essentially hiding the fact you're using a VPN at all – and CleanWeb blocks ads and malware, ensuring a smooth and lag-free experience throughout. 

In my latest Surfshark review, the Netherlands-based provider also delivered some of the fastest VPN connection speeds I've seen. Topping out at 950 Mbps when using WireGuard, it certainly won't be slowing you down whatever you're using it for.

While some features aren't available on Linux – split tunneling is a big omission – Surfshark is of incredible value, and with unlimited simultaneous connections, you'll be able to cover any and all your devices, whatever OS they're running.

It's especially useful as a mobile VPN, and is the perfect tool for staying protected when you're out and about.

Combined with an independently audited no-logs policy and RAM-only servers, you can rest assured that the company doesn't keep any logs of your activity, and even if authorities come knocking on its door, it won't have anything to show them. 

Speaking of streaming, Surfshark blew me out of the water as it unblocked everything I threw at it in my testing – from popular sites like Netflix, iPlayer, and Prime Video to even smaller libraries like 9Now and 10Play.

No provider is perfect, and if you're a really advanced user, Surfshark could seem restrictive. For example, there's no port forwarding function available in the apps, and most of the settings are intended to be plug and play, rather than offering customization. 

That being said, though, it's hardly underpowered, and I appreciate the simplicity – it really does just work out the box.

It's also super cheap, priced at less than $2.50 per month, meaning it's a go-to choice for those pinching for pennies. Plus, unlike most other providers, you'll have a 7-day free trial in addition to the industry-standard 30-day money-back guarantee to try out the service risk-free. 

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Surfshark test results
FeatureCommentsRating
DesignIntuitive and fun design, ideal for beginners ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useEasy-to-navigate and simple apps for Linux and everything else too⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceSeriously speedy connections⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingEffortless access to every streaming site ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyGenerally very secure, but the kill switch could be better⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportFriendly 24/7 support with no shortage of helpful guides ⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceExcellent value, and much more affordable than the 'premium' alternatives⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Private Internet Access: very customizable Linux VPN

Private Internet Access

(Image credit: Future)

2. Private Internet Access

More servers than any other Linux provider

Number of servers: 20,000+ | Server locations: 100+ | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | Linux GUI: Yes

A server in every US state
Great torrenting features
Super private
GUI on Linux
Middling speeds
May be too complex for some
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want a large fleet of servers: with over 20,000 servers under its belt, PIA boasts the largest network of servers – no other Linux VPN comes anywhere close. 

✔️ You want a trustworthy VPN: PIA is the only provider to have proven its no-logs policy in court twice, making it a delight for privacy purists.

✔️ You want a budget pick: priced at just a few ticks over the $2 mark, PIA is even cheaper than Surfshark and offers tremendous bang for your buck. 

Avoid if:

❌ You want blazing speeds: while PIA isn't sluggish by any stretch of the imagination, NordVPN and Surfshark are admittedly better picks for speed.

❌ You want a built-in password manager: PIA falls short of the competition when it comes to providing nifty add-ons like a built-in password manager or antivirus. 

❌ You want to stream 10Play: PIA failed to unblock the Aussie platform 10Play, and for those whose watchlist is majorly that, I'd recommend Surfshark or NordVPN. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Private Internet Access boasts a large fleet of servers, open-source apps, and a very configurable Linux interface which will be a delight for tech experts. With unlimited simultaneous connections at one of the most attractive prices I've seen, there's plenty of value on offer too, and you can try it risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.   

In my Private Internet Access (PIA) review, I was impressed by the attention to detail and simplicity of its Linux app, which operates an easy-to-use GUI instead of the limited command line, and is power-packed with security features like split tunneling and ad-blocking. 

PIA is a very privacy-focused provider, which is evident from the fact that all of its apps, including the Linux VPN app, are 100% open source, meaning experts can look into its code and find any vulnerabilities if they can. Not only that, it's also the only provider to have proven its no-logs policy in court – not once, but twice

PIA's massive fleet of over 20,000 servers means that irrespective of where you are on the map, you'll be able to find one nearby. It also offers at least one server in every US state – easy to see why it's a top choice as a US VPN, then. 

As one of the few providers that undercut Surfshark – only ever so slightly – PIA offers excellent value for money, which is further boosted when you look at the number of simultaneous connections it offers – unlimited! 

You can share your PIA login credentials with any number of devices without worrying about getting logged out on any of them. 

What's more, PIA comes with dedicated streaming servers, and you'll enjoy access to virtually every Netflix location and other platforms too, like iPlayer, Hulu, and YouTube

However, it's worth noting that it failed to unblock the Aussie streaming platform 10Play in my most recent round of testing, but I don't see that being a deal breaker for the majority of users. 

If I had to go around nitpicking, I'd say that PIA is a full step behind other providers in terms of speeds, but in reality, a top speed of 360 Mbps should be more than enough for just about everything you'll need a VPN for. 

That said, PIA has seen a drop in peak speeds since my last round of testing. Of course, it's very hard to objectively test speeds, and there are countless factors that can affect it. But, for speed obsessives on the hunt for class-leading connections, I'd recommend considering Surfshark or NordVPN. 

All in all, PIA is a delight for tech experts, courtesy of its open-source apps and limitless configuration, and while beginners may need some time to get used to all that’s on offer, with unlimited simultaneous connections at one of the most pocket-friendly prices, it offers enough to keep everyone interested. 

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Private Internet Access test results
FeatureCommentsRating
DesignA lot of customization options mean that beginners may have a hard time⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useA haven for tech experts, but beginners will have a lot of understanding to do⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceSufficiently quick but NordVPN and Surfshark are admittedly faster ⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingAccess to all popular streaming sites, but it failed to unblock 10Play⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyRock-solid encryption with a no-logs policy that has been proven in court, twice⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 customer support with a rich knowledge hub ⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceUndercuts Surfshark as the best budget Linux VPN⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Proton VPN: Swiss security on Linux

Proton VPN interface for various platforms

(Image credit: Proton VPN)

3. Proton VPN

Swiss security through and through

Number of servers: 3,000+ | Server locations: 68+ | Maximum devices supported: 10 | Linux GUI: Yes

Open-source apps + audit
Secure Core protects vulnerable servers
Free plan with unlimited bandwidth
Improved network coverage (also for free plan)
Plus plans are pricey
Customer support needs improvement
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want an ultra-secure Linux VPN: with Secure Core servers, open-source apps, Swiss privacy laws, and a GUI, Proton is in the upper echelon of secure VPNs for Linux. 

✔️ You want a free Linux VPN: Proton VPN has a fully functional free version for Linux devices, offering unlimited data and access to a handful of servers. 

✔️ You want powerful unblocking: Proton is able to unblock every major and local streaming site without any fuss. 

Avoid if:

❌ You're on a budget: Proton VPN is on the expensive side of things, and those pinching for pennies will be better off with Surfshark or PIA.

❌ You want tons of servers: while 2,900+ servers aren't to be sniffed at, it's nowhere close to what PIA or NordVPN offer.

❌ You want to stream for free: Proton's free plan is superb for normal usage, but it doesn't come with any unblocking capabilities, which are reserved for users of the Plus plan. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Proton VPN is a highly secure Linux VPN, thanks to open-source apps, a clear privacy policy, and an always-on VPN feature for 24/7 protection. It's also an excellent free Linux VPN, but if you want a taste of its full potential, try its premium plan risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.  

In my full Proton VPN review, I found this Swiss provider that’s well-known as one of the most secure VPNs to be a mighty impressive Linux VPN as well. For starters, it comes with an intuitive GUI for all Linux derivatives such as Ubuntu, Manjaro, and more, and all of them are sprinkled with ample features that are easy to understand and use. 

Like PIA, Proton VPN too, offers open-source apps for Linux and other devices, including its Android VPN, iOS VPN, Windows VPN, Mac VPN, and more. As mentioned earlier, Proton VPN is based out of Switzerland, a country outside EU and US jurisdictions and one that's not a part of the Five Eyes Alliance for surveillance. 

Combined with an independently audited no-logs policy and an always-on VPN feature, Proton VPN offers the highest level of privacy you'll find in a VPN. 

While providers like TorGuard don't make their free VPN versions available to Linux users, Proton VPN does no such thing – you'll be able to benefit from its free plan no matter your OS and enjoy access to 100+ servers in 3 countries, unlimited bandwidth and data, and an ad-free online experience. 

It's worth noting that Proton's free plan doesn't come with unblocking capabilities, which, although exclusive to users of the Plus plan, is worth every penny thanks to its ability to evade blocks placed by streaming sites. The provider is able to unblock all sorts of Netflix locations, including hard-to-crack countries like Japan, and services like Disney+, Prime Video, Hulu, and YouTube are all available as well. 

What's more, the Linux version does omit some of my favorite features – most notably the Secure Core servers. Proton's website states that this is 'coming soon' to Linux, and I hope this is true. After all, Linux is often chosen due to its inherent security features, so having this extra layer of protection would likely be very appealing to users of the OS.

The provider has amped up its server count to over 3,000, which puts it more in line with what top providers like Surfshark and ExpressVPN offer. Its reach is rather impressive, as its servers are located in over 68 countries worldwide – this is more than NordVPN's 60 countries – allowing you access everywhere.

While it isn't the most affordable of the lot, with 10 simultaneous connections, consistent speeds, strong unblocking, and some of the most high-class security offerings, Proton VPN is well worth a look if you're a privacy purist shopping for reliability.

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Proton VPN test results
FeatureCommentsRating
DesignA dynamic and fun design with the dark mode as a standout ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useStraightforward mobile apps, but the same can't be said about the desktop version⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceFast enough for every use case⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingPowerful unblocking and goes past every streaming platform with ease⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacySecure Core servers, open-source apps, and Swiss privacy laws give complete peace of mind ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 support by friendly agents, but live chat isn't 24/7 yet⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceQuite expensive when compared to those around it⭐⭐⭐

The best of the rest

NordVPN best linux vpn

(Image credit: NordVPN)

4. NordVPN

Powerful, audited Linux VPN

Number of servers: 5,000+ | Server locations: 60+ | Maximum devices supported: 6 | Linux GUI: No

Audited logs policy
Extra privacy features
Intuitive server selector
No Linux GUI
Mobile apps could use a bit of work
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want excellent streaming support: NordVPN is a force to reckon with when it comes to bypassing geo-restrictions on streaming sites, and it'll give you effortless access everywhere. 

✔️ You want built-in antivirus: Nord stamps its authority as one of the most well-rounded solutions for internet security, thanks to add-ons like built-in antivirus, password manager, and ad-blockers. 

✔️ You want the perfect cost-quality mix: NordVPN delivers on all counts, including speed, unblocking, and privacy, and that too, at a very reasonable price point. 

Avoid if:

❌ You want a GUI on Linux: While Nord's an extremely capable VPN, you'll have to control through command line on Linux.

❌ You want to protect a lot of devices: with only 6 simultaneous connections on offer, NordVPN falls behind the likes of Surfshark and PIA, which offer unlimited simultaneous connections.

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

NordVPN offers class-leading speeds and unrivaled privacy, thanks to its proprietary NordLynx protocol and features like the Double VPN, a built-in antivirus, and excellent streaming unblocking. Unfortunately there's no GUI, though, so if that's a deal-breaker, check out Surfshark.

Fourth on my list is NordVPN, which offers a great many features to its Linux users. In my NordVPN review, I love the Double VPN feature, which for extra security, routes your traffic through two different VPN servers, encrypting your data twice. Linux users can also connect through obfuscated servers that will conceal the fact that you’re using a VPN to route your traffic to bypass any bans on VPN traffic. 

There's also a nifty Onion over VPN feature that gives you access to the very secure Tor network without having to download the Tor browser. 

What's more, Nord is also one of the few providers to come with a built-in antivirus for extra protection. This, alongside rock-solid essentials like an intuitive kill switch, split tunneling, and an independently audited zero-logging policy, makes Nord one of the most sought-after VPNs for security. 

Nord's Linux version also supports its brand-new Meshnet feature, using which you can set up a private network with up to 60 devices to securely and speedily share files, play local co-op and multiplayer games, and collaborate with your work buddies. 

Besides Linux, NordVPN also offers straightforward apps for almost every OS you can think of – Android, iOS, Mac, Chromebook, Firestick, you name it.

The service relies on its home-brewed NordLynx protocol that’s based on WireGuard and is tuned for speed. I'm happy to report that NordVPN is now on par with Surfshark in terms of speed, as it clocked in at a massive 950 Mbps in my most recent speed tests. 

Great and consistent speeds in tandem with class-leading unblocking capabilities make NordVPN a go-to choice for streaming heads as well – it's able to bypass even the most strict geo-restrictions and give you access to your favorite movies and TV shows regardless of the streaming site and your location on the globe. 

The elephant in the room, however, is that NordVPN does not provide a GUI for Linux users, meaning you'll have to use the command line. For some this won't be an issue at all, but many users will lament the lack of investment on Linux. If having a GUI is a deal-breaker – I don't blame you if so – then Surfshark or PIA will be better ptions.

In terms of limitations, NordVPN allows a maximum of six devices to share the same connection at any given time. This comes across as a little stingy, especially when you have providers like Surfshark and PIA pushing the limits with unlimited simultaneous connections, and that too, at lower price points. 

However, NordVPN is one of the very best products on the market, and if you can live without a GUI, it's still a great choice.

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NordVPN test results
FeatureCommentsRating
DesignDynamic and fun design, but there's too much clutter ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useThe map-style interface isn't the easiest to use, but everything else works perfectly well⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceClass-leading speeds, on par with Surfshark ⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingExcellent for unblocking Netflix and everything else as well⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyA complete security package, thanks to a built-in antivirus and anti-tracking tools ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 customer support with a plethora of technical guides⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceDelivers excellent value for its asking price, but it's not quite the cheapest⭐⭐⭐⭐