File sharing is close to becoming a tradition in internet culture. The usage of peer-to-peer networking (in short, the sharing of data between interconnected machines) has proven to be a very effective way of acquiring whatever people desire online. Among others, this method makes music, movies, or any multimedia content much, much more accessible. Various business entities or even affiliated governmental bodies that own such content or have an interest in making it profitable are often not that accepting of the concept of “fair use”. Now because there is some abuse of file sharing, the entities owning the content seek to regulate file sharing. This mainly comes in the form of governmental restrictions, varying from country to country.
Therefore, it can be said that since a lot of countries impose restrictions on file sharing, and there is a need for the restricted content, a solution is also needed. Virtual Private Networks (or VPNs) are the most complete remedy for this problem today. However, not all of them support P2P services like The Pirate Bay, Torrentz, Isohunt or Deluge. Similarly, not all of them come with proxy support. Let’s look at how VPN services support P2P and torrent activities, and which providers are the best at it.
How to Use a VPN with Torrents
Among other reasons, a VPN service is extremely helpful for torrenting purposes. A lot of countries block access to torrenting sites, and one the one hand, using a VPN helps in either connecting to a country that does not restrict P2P and sometimes boasts solutions like smart DNS implemented into it that will unblock a torrent site even if you use private networking in a country where it is restricted. Furthermore, you will stay safe while doing this, connection wise. All VPN connections are encrypted, meaning that your data traffic is enveloped in a protective layer of other data that will hide your activities.
For the setup of a Virtual Private Network, the only safety setting we do not recommend using is the PPTP protocol. While relatively fast, it offers little protection. Otherwise, L2TP or OpenVPN are the most effective types of VPN security protocols today. For desktop computers and laptops, any protocol is suitable. Most mobile devices can be considerably slower than say a PC, therefore L2TP is more widespread than OpenVPN there (though the latter is also possible). The most torrent-friendly countries to connect to are Switzerland (the best bet), the Netherlands and Spain.
Best VPN Services for Torrents of 2017
VPN vs Proxy
We would also like to address how using a VPN is different from using a proxy. By simply connecting to a VPN network, you can hide your presence online and essentially imitate connecting to the internet from another country. From the viewpoint of P2P, a proxy serves as a catalyst; both a form of indirect protection from outsiders and a tool facilitating file sharing. The disadvantage of proxies is that they do not encrypt your traffic, making their usage less safe, while VPN does use encryption, protecting your privacy better.
Is it Safe and Legal?
In almost all countries of the world today, VPN services are legal to use. You might assume that it is in the interest of governing bodies to regulate it, and while today’s internet is characterized by growing restrictions and governmental control, VPN providers are excluded. There are many possible explanations for this; financial reasons, a general lack of attention and the difficulty of basically circumventing an area of online service that is designed to circumvent in the first place is quite a difficult task. We are nevertheless happy that VPN companies thrive today, as they are gateways towards a more free internet.
Free VPNs for Torrenting
When we talk about VPN providers that are best for torrenting, there are a number of criteria that should be taken into account. First, regardless of the speeds a certain company offers or promises, there are bandwidth caps present for the countries you connect to. This means that you can only get up to a certain amount of speed per country. The Netherlands for example are friendly to P2P and also have good average speeds. Mexico on the other hand still has a developing network and thus you can expect lower speeds regardless of good access to torrents. Thus, we now present you three torrent friendly VPN providers that work well in every situation and offer a means of using their VPN service for free through free trials.
First, we recommend that you read a bit about IPVanish. One of the best VPN services today, they are one of the all around greats. With a generally user-friendly environment and a favorable log policy, your conditions for a hidden online presence are just excellent. Device support is essentially complete with even specific routers included, and customer support is of high quality and available 24/7. The company has a 7-day money back guarantee that grants you a week of risk-free VPN usage. IPVanish is a top choice that should not be overlooked.
Secondly, VPNArea are pioneers of online safety. When you switch to another country’s IP address, some details of your connection are exposed for a few seconds. VPNArea offers a remedy for this. With the rarely seen DNS leak protection, your VPN networks stays protected even when you turn it on or off. A similar problem arises when using browsers and P2P; the so-called Web-RTC leaks are a problem, and VPNArea is one of only a handful that offers prevention in this matter, too. And to top it off, you can connect the service from 5 different devices at the same time, granting a pretty widespread domain of device support possibilities.
Lastly, we would like to call attention to IronSocket. While their regular P2P support comes in the form of general unblocking – that is connecting to a country that is friendly towards it – IronSocket excels in proxy oriented networking. Since this is also an element seen quite often in torrenting, you can fine-tune your P2P activities very easily by simply enabling the same kind of proxy for both your IronSocket and torrent clients. Another great side of the company’s services is that they can also help you via remote desktop, a rarely seen method.