How to use a VPN? User guide, how a VPN works and what is it for?

How to work a VPN and what it is for

Despite some popular ideas, installing and using a VPN on a computer is relatively simple. You will just have to take a few minutes of your time.

How to use a VPN ? User manual

More and more Internet users have recourse to VPN applications when they connect to the Internet. If this craze is such it is because VPN has many advantages and few disadvantages, but also and above all thanks to their ease of use. You doubt it ? In this article, we explain to you how to use a VPN and you will see that it is simple as hello.

How to use VPN effectively ?

You are not comfortable with new technologies and you are afraid of doing wrong with your VPN ? The use of a VPN is certainly simpler than you imagine. Contrary to what you can believe, it is not necessary to be a computer pro to get there. For the sake of clarity, we will detail each step so that you can properly use a VPN.

1 – Choose a VPN

The first thing is to choose a supplier. Since there are a multitude of offers on the market, it is not an easy task. There are indeed many criteria to take into account: safety, speed, features, ergonomics, prices, etc.

3000 servers

94 covered country

30 days satisfied or refunded

5 simultaneous connections

Our opinion : One of the best VPNs on the market !

9000 servers

91 covered country

45 days satisfied or refunded

7 simultaneous connections

Our opinion : An excellent VPN with a very large network

5500 servers

60 covered country

30 days satisfied or refunded

6 simultaneous connections

Our opinion : A very good VPN for safety and anonymity

After carrying out several VPN service tests, we advise you to orient yourself towards certified and efficient tools such as ExpressVPN, Cyberghost or NordVPN. We will come back to the characteristics of their offers later, after explaining to you how to use a VPN. In any case, be aware that the tools will considerably facilitate your first steps because they are particularly easy to use.

2 – Subscribe to a plan

Most VPN service providers provide several subscriptions. Generally, the characteristics of the packages are the same. This is the contractual period that varies and, therefore, the prices. VPNs more reward customers who engage over a longer period. The monthly package is therefore more expensive than the annual package.

It’s up to you to choose the subscription that suits you according to the duration of engagement and the associated rate. Knowing that the VPN providers mentioned here offer a “satisfied or reimbursed” guarantee allowing to test their application, you will not take much risks when subscribing.

Expressvpn subscription price

3 – Download the application to its devices

When the aspects related to the subscription are set, you can download the VPN software to start using it. Note that VPNs are compatible with many supports and that an account often allows several simultaneous installations and connections.

For computers, the easiest way is to go to the official website of your supplier and then in the section corresponding to your operating system (MacOS, Windows or Linux). Download is free and immediate. Regarding installations on smartphone, tablet, smart TV and connected case, you can go directly to the application store corresponding to your platform (App Store or Google Play Store) and search for the name of your VPN. Click on “Obtain” and wait a few seconds for the download to be made. Finally, regardless of the device, the process is similar to other software.

4 – Configure the application

When the download is completed, you will be able to open the file on PC or, failing that, the mobile application. The computer configuration is very fast. Thanks to the guided steps, this will take you less than a minute.


On smartphone, tablet or connected TV, the process is even simpler. You will only have to accept the addition of VPN configuration and authorize or not the notifications. Once the configuration is completed, you will only have to enter your account identifier and password to be able to have access to the VPN reception interface.

5 – Browse the list of countries and select the one interested in you

After these purely technical, but necessary steps, you can familiarize yourself with the VPN application. Those we recommend have the distinction of being very simple to handle. The suppliers have made efforts on the design of the application so that the interface is purified and pleasant to use.

We find more or less the same orders in each VPN, but arranged differently. The procedure is similar to activating the VPN. You will simply have to browse the list of available locations and choose which seems to you the most suitable for your online activities.

For example, to unlock American content at home, you will have to opt for a server in the United States. Conversely, if you want to access French sites from a foreign country, it is a server in France that will have to be selected. If you have no target territory in mind that you just want a secure connection, then opt for the automatic connection function of your VPN. Expressvpn talks about smart rental, cyberghost of best server and nordvpn of Quick Connect.

6 – wait for a few seconds then browse the internet normally

When you have selected the adapted country or, failing that, chosen an automatic location, wait a few moments that the connection is established. Note that in the three recommended suppliers, activation is almost instantaneous (in less than 5 seconds on average). At ExpressVPN and NordVPN, a green indicator proves it. At Cyberghost, you will see the activation button go yellow with the mention “established connection”.


From this moment, you have nothing more to do, except to normally navigate. The VPN runs in the background on your device without you realizing it. Some settings are advised to avoid confidentiality problems such as activation of the Kill Switch emergency stop. Rest assured, the majority of premium VPNs automate the most important features and sometimes integrate them directly to simplify the lives of Internet users and not compromise their safety.

If you have traveled this guide, you now know how to properly use a VPN for beginners. You also find that no step requires pushed knowledge in computer science.

Can I use a VPN on any device ?

Nearly. Using one of the VPNs that we are going to present to you, you will be sure to be able to take advantage of its service on your various devices.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of the main platforms supported:

  • Computer (Windows, MacOS, Linux)
  • Smartphone and tablet (Android and iOS)
  • TV and streaming box (Android TV, Apple TV, Nvidia Shield TV, Firestick)
  • Game console (Xbox and PlayStation)
  • Router

Use a VPN on your computer (Windows and Mac)

Despite some popular ideas, installing and using a VPN on a computer is relatively simple. You will just have to take a few minutes of your time.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose the VPN for Windows or MacOS that interests you. On computer, our favorite is ExpressVPN
  2. Download the application to the supplier’s website
  3. Install the latter by following the instructions given through the installation program
  4. Open the application and start using it without further delay by logging into a server.

Use a VPN on your smartphone or tablet (iOS and Android)

You wonder how to use a VPN on a smartphone or tablet ? Well it’s even easier than on a computer. All you have to do is choose an iOS compatible VPN or VPN operating on Android, then follow the following steps:

  1. Subscribe to the service that interests you. Our recommendation is ExpressVPN.
  2. Go to the apps store on your device (App Store on iOS or Google Play Store on Android)
  3. Use the search bar to find the application
  4. Press the download button and wait. The installation will be done automatically.
  5. Once the application is accessible, you can use it !

Use a VPN on a TV or a streaming case

Before you get started (and subscribe to a subscription), check on the VPN supplier website that you will indeed be able to use its application on your connected television or your IPTV streaming box.

Indeed, all TV or box models are not supported. In some cases (Android TV, Nvidia Shield, etc.) you can directly find the application on the application catalog. This is your case ? Then the approach will be the same as that described in the previous section concerning smartphones and tablets.

If on the other hand you do not have the possibility of using the VPN application directly on your TV or connected housing, then you will have to consider the installation of the virtual private network on your Wi-Fi router. More information can be found in our article dedicated to the use of a VPN on router.

The simplest VPNs to use in 2023

To illustrate the previous use steps, we mentioned three VPN names, namely ExpressVPN, Cyberghost and NordVPN. It is no coincidence that we are talking about these suppliers. Indeed, they are renowned for their extensive safety levels and the complete anonymity they offer to their users. Their prices remain reasonable and their applications are particularly quick to handle. In addition, they have a dedicated technical team to help customers every moment.

Here are some characteristics to remember on each of them:

ExpressVPN: the most versatile and efficient VPN

He’s a pioneer in the world of VPNs. It has been present since 2009 and has a very good reputation in the cybersecurity industry. NO-LOG certified by independent audits, it does not keep any compromising data for the confidentiality of its users. This supplier has 3000 servers located in 94 countries around the world.

In addition to a large network coverage, ExpressVPN offers high speed connection, very stable. It is the most versatile VPN because it adapts both for everyday activities and to view streaming content or P2P downloads. Its application is very sober and translated into French which facilitates the use. An account at ExpressVPN authorizes 5 connections at the same time on several devices.

Cyberghost: the largest VPN infrastructure

Cyberghost is another high-quality VPN that offers very good value for money. It is appreciated for its impressive amount of servers (more than 9000 in 91 countries) and its ease of use. Thanks to a few dedicated servers, users will be able to benefit from an optimized connection in all circumstances. A subscription to Cyberghost includes 7 simultaneous connections. The application is compatible on the main platforms and even on certain routers. To find out more about its service, you can read the report of our opinion on Cyberghost VPN.

NordVPN: the renowned and complete VPN

NordVPN is another world leader in VPN. With a very successful application and advanced security options, it is suitable for all Internet users, especially those concerned with their private life online. Capable of bypassing geo-restrictions and censorship with its 5,800 servers distributed in 60 countries, NordVPN abolishes online blockages. He makes it a point of honor to offer an ultra simple solution, which is felt when using VPN for the first time. This supplier constantly improves his service.

By favoring these VPNs, you have the certainty of having access to a quality service, efficient and simple to use.

3 things to know about the Virtual Private Network (VPN)

Before concluding, let us briefly recall what VPNs are. These are software that contributes to the protection of Internet users’ privacy and strengthening their online freedom. The underlying technology may seem quite complex, since it is based on the connection to an intermediate server (that of the VPN), but most is simple to use. Here is what you need to know about these tools.

VPNs to be anonymous on the Internet

This is not a scoop, the best way to be anonymous on the Internet is to install and activate a VPN on its connected supports. Indeed, these applications make it possible to hide your real IP address, in favor of another shared between thousands of other users. The IP address being a unique number to identify each internet user, it is essential to hide it if you want to navigate in an incognito way on the web. The camouflage of the IP using a VPN takes effect immediately, as soon as it activates. From then on, no one can go back to you and know who you are.


VPNs to protect its private data

Virtual private networks are also very useful applications not to disclose your personal information and online activities. As these tools are able to encrypt your start -to -end traffic, generally via a powerful algorithm, no one can know what you are doing online. Data encryption will blur them, so that they look like charabia for hackers, your internet access provider or any other too curious person. It is therefore a significant advantage when you are at home or connected to public Wi-Fi networks.

VPNs to unlock websites

In addition to hiding your IP address, the VPNs assign you another. You will choose the server you want to connect. And as each server has a clean IP address located in a particular country, it is therefore a great way to modify your location online. VPNs allow you to bypass geo-blockages, networks and digital censorship. Being able to unlock a blocked site is very practical as soon as you go on a trip, but also when you are at your home to access international content. VPNs thus offer an internet without border.

Conclusion: Use a VPN effectively by equipping yourself with a good VPN

In 2023, most VPNs for the general public offer an ergonomic application and a friendly interface. The use of VPNs therefore does not pose a problem, even to those who start. Using a VPN correctly, you can therefore surf in peace, even on public Wi-Fi networks, without worrying about monitoring, censorship and online monitoring.

VPNs are compatible on computer, mobile, tablet, smart TV and on other less conventional connected media such as routers or consoles. A subscription is often sufficient to equip all his devices since he alone authorizes several simultaneous connections. This is the case of ExpressVPN, the best VPN in 2023 and the easiest to use, which offers 5 connections both per account. Also, know that its offers are subject to a 30 -day reimbursement guarantee.

You can therefore test this VPN without any risk now:

This content is offered to you by a team independent of the editorial staff 01net. The editorial staff did not participate in the production of this guide on VPNs. 01net is likely to receive remuneration when a purchase is made via the integrated links.

How to work a VPN and what it is for ?

Good plan The primary purpose of VPNs to strengthen your safety. They are also there to anonymize your internet connection and allow you to access geographically limited content thanks to servers scattered around the world

20 minutes Buyer Guide
Posted on 09/12/22 at 07:02 – Updated on 09/23/22 at 3:51 p.m

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How does a VPN work and what is it for?

The 20 -minute writing did not participate in the realization of this article.

NordVPN is certainly the best known actor in the VPN sector. It is also one of the most complete, having a quality/price ratio that could not be more attractive. But behind this name, of which you have already heard of, surely hide features of which you ignore existence.

How does a VPN work ?

A VPN is, literally, a virtual private network. This is a protection between your computer and all the global networks to which you log in to browse the internet. VPNs, like NordVPN, act as a safety shield, but also serve to hide your IP address in the eyes of all, even your Internet supplier, in order to respect your anonymity.

To use them, it’s very simple: once a subscription has been subscribed, just connect with your account identifiers on the VPN and activate the safety options. For example, with NordVPN, it will simply start with extensive protection of all your personal data. As well as increased monitoring of data passing through your connection.

The keyword of a VPN is confidentiality. By masking your IP address thanks to NordVPN, you will get more difficult to track by possible cybercriminals or hackers wishing to extract your information. But the most popular function is certainly that of the change of IP.

Its operation is very simple: you want to access geographically protected content ? Take advantage of promotions available in a foreign country ? Access the Netflix catalog of other regions ? Just choose your country from the available list and wait a few seconds to connect. With NordVPN, you have the choice among 5,483 servers distributed in 59 countries around the world.

When it is done, the sites on which you will go and receive the information that you are in the country in question. For example: you want to see films and series available exclusively on an American streaming platform ? Choose a server in the USA, launch the connection and go to the site in question.

However, you will still have to pay a subscription to the platform in question. VPNs do not guarantee you free and unlimited access to all streaming or other services. This is a perfectly legal tool in no way granting a form of impunity. Once the use of VPN is included and controlled, you will open many doors on the world Internet.

One of the unknown but very interesting examples is also for travel and holidays. By comparing the price of flights, hotels or car rentals from different countries via the change of IP, the price difference can be huge.

What are the security functions of a VPN ?

The primary function of a VPN, like NordVPN, is security. For this, he intervenes on several levels. You can see it as a very advanced antivirus. Not only will he track down malware, Trojan horses and other attempts to bake on your computer, but in addition he will warn you upstream of the dangers of the sites visited.

NordVPN even has the capacity to go and scrutinize the Dark Web, this part of the internet inaccessible without knowing the access, in order to verify if your personal data has leaked. Among all VPN safety standards, you can find the Kill Switch function. This prevents any unsecured connection through monitoring of your connection to the remote server. At the slightest cut, the Kill Switch cuts any internet access.

Another very interesting function for VPNs, such as NordVPN: the split tunneling. This allows you to divide your connection in two: on the one hand a local connection in order to exchange data at very high speed in a conventional way. On the other, a connection secured by the VPN to navigate in a secure manner. This can be useful, for example, for gaming, so as not to have too much latency during online games.

NordVPN also invites you to acquire a dedicated IP. This belongs only to you and allows to have a highly secure place and above all not shared with other users. Because, if NordVPN allows you to situate yourself virtually worldwide, your IP address will still be accessible. Thus, if you subscribe to a Netflix subscription in the USA before booking a hotel from Japan, your bank could suspect fraudulent activity.

To overcome this problem, the dedicated IP address allows you to have a fixed address through which you are moving to secure your connection. This also blows up the Captcha verification system that can occur in the event of a shared IP.

NordVPN also offers access to Nordpass. This is auxiliary software dealing with the security of your passwords. They are all stored there and kept behind military encryption. And when you create an account on a new site, it suggests a random and completely inviolable generated it.

Finally, NordVPN protects up to 6 aircraft with a single account. It is also installed on your PC, your console, a router, a TV box, a smartphone or simply a browser via an extension. So you are protected at any time.

What to remember about the use of a VPN:

  • VPN allows you to secure and anonymize your Internet connection
  • It saves money by comparing country prices by country
  • With a VPN, all your actions and transactions on the Internet are protected

Obtting for a VPN is choosing security and tranquility. In addition to being able to access some slightly more entertaining functions such as access to the content of foreign streaming platforms. In the majority of cases, you also have a free trial period of 30 or 45 days, in order to test the VPN from all its seams. And assistance available 24/7, to answer the least of your questions. In order to make your own opinion on these services, do not hesitate to consult the top of the best VPNs to use in 2022.

NordVPN: What is it, and is it legal ?
NordVPN: 4 free months + 68% reduction for the start of the 2022 school year

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