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TorGuard offers a rock-solid service with no major problems, except for a possible flaw in IPv6 leak prevention. They suffer a bit, however, from a lack of “killer” features.
TorGuard has been providing services since 2012 and currently has a network of over 1600 servers. Their cheapest plan starts at $9.99/mo. Based on longterm testing, our rating for TorGuard is 8.1.
TorGuard offers a host of privacy options including smart DNS proxies, and the VPN service is available with a set of shared IP addresses; however, the real specialty of the service is providing customers with dedicated IP addresses. If you want to learn more about this great provider now, click the button below.
Both Smart DNS services and VPNs are forms of proxies. A Smart DNS redirects some, but not all, traffic to your local server. It mediates connections so that the two endpoints are never directly in contact: it allows a client to contact websites and Internet services anonymously.
A VPN behaves in the same way as a proxy, except that it encrypts all packets traveling from the client’s computer to the service’s home computer. While a smart DNS proxy only mediates individual connections, the proxy mediates everything and adds a level of privacy to your anonymity.
A point that brings us back to TorGuard, which is a major player in both the VPN and Smart DNS markets.
Many of TorGuard’s features are available on the website, rather than in the app. These include an IP location checker, DNS leak checkers and WebRTC leaks.
The features section of this review divides those items into categories, and here you’ll learn about the general nature of TorGuard. Like most VPN services, there is no limit on the bandwidth allotted to each user, nor does the company restrict performance for specific applications. P2P downloading is fine with this service, and the VPN can be used in conjunction with Tor. If you want to learn more about this great provider now, click the button below.
Unfortunately, TorGuard is not good at circumventing geo-restrictions on streaming sites. I tried logging into Netflix US and Netflix UK, but both detected the VPN and blocked access. The ABC GO website also sniffed it out and refused to play on any shows. I could only watch programs on the BBC iPlayer service, with TorGuard enabled.
Support technicians recommend buying a dedicated IP to access streaming sites. However, this is at a price of $7.99 per month, per country. You need to purchase an address in the country of the server you want to access. This service is offered to users in:
The US, Canada, UK, Italy, Germany, Japan, Australia, France and Finland.
Customers in Canada and France have the option to purchase a dedicated DDoS-protected IP address for $11.99 per month, per country.
After subscribing to the service, log in to the client on the TorGuard website. Under the Services tab, you will find the software downloads page, where you should click on the version of the application for your operating system. Doing so downloads a file that installs the application.
The application is very easy to use. The first time you use it, you will be prompted to log in. After that, however, your credentials are saved in the app, so there is no need to retype them. The main screen of the app is uncluttered and has very few options. Most of the settings for a connection can be changed via drop-down lists.
The “Select server” button provides access to the list of servers. Servers with the black diamond symbol next to them include stealth technology, which prevents VPN traffic from being detected by deep packet inspections.
More connection options are available on the settings page, which you can access by clicking on “more options” on the main screen of the application. If you want to learn more about this great provider now, click the button below.
You can also install TorGuard as a browser add-on, rather than as a standalone application. Versions are available for Chrome and Firefox. Better yet, you can install the VPN software on DD-WRT and Tomato routers.
TorGuard’s server network includes 1600 servers, spread across 50 countries. The VPN server network includes sites in China and Saudi Arabia, which are very restrictive countries in terms of Internet access. Expatriates would be better off using these servers to access geo-restricted sites in their country. From within each country, it is better to access servers located in other nations to circumvent local Internet restrictions.
All these servers provide shared IP services. Dedicated IP addresses are only available in the USA, Canada, UK, Italy, Germany, Japan, Australia, France and Finland.
The speed performance offered by TorGuard can speed up a slow connection. If you get poor quality service when connecting to online gaming or streaming services, then your ISP is probably restricting the bandwidth allocated to those services. This is a practice called “throttling,” and TorGuard’s anonymity can help you get around these restrictions.
Applying the VPN improved my connection speed to a level that has never been provided by local Internet services. This fact proves that the private lines and high quality peering arrangements used by TorGuard are superior to the investments made by local Internet companies.
I tried the speeds on a connection to Miami several times. On most tests, the download speed was about 2.7Mb per second. However, on the fourth attempt, I got very high speeds.
I ran the test again, this time to the UK with the VPN server in London mediating the connection. In each case, the speeds were lower than those achieved on an unprotected line. The best results are shown below. These are slightly slower than the connection without TorGuard enabled.
The application offers you the possibility to use OpenVPN or OpenConnect VPN protocols. OpenConnect uses SSL encryption procedures, which is the same protocol that HTTPS uses on secure websites. OpenVPN is the industry standard method for tunneling, and the application allows you to choose the level of AES encryption applied to your connections.
In both cases, you can choose whether to run the connection over TCP or UDP sockets. TCP is the standard transmission protocol for Internet connections, and UDP is a lightweight version that does not include confirmation messages; it is used for streaming services, such as VoIP.
TorGuard has its own DNS servers, so address resolution procedures are kept fully encrypted and hidden from your ISP.
The main security feature that is calibrated from the configuration menu is the kill switch, which prevents a connection from occurring when the VPN is not connected. You can list the applications to be restricted for unprotected Internet access.
Giving you the option to allow insecure access for some applications, while ensuring anonymity for others. TorGuard offers other VPN protocols in addition to OpenConnect and OpenVPN.
However, they are not accessible from the application. You must manually configure them on your computer as a network VPN. If you are not very comfortable with computer gaming, then you probably won’t be very interested in this option.
However, the OpenVPN option should serve you well. If you want to venture into manually configuring a VPN, you have the option to switch to protection by:
TorGuard’s parent company is headquartered in the Caribbean nation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. However, the company’s center of operations is located in Orlando, Florida.
And that could be a problem, as copyright lawyers in the U.S. have a habit of misrepresenting Internet service companies or torrenting websites to deliver to their customers and visitors. In 2010, the U.S. Copyright Group filed 16,200 lawsuits against individuals who had been tracked by their IP addresses for downloading copyrighted material.
The U.S. Copyright and Family Entertainment Act defines torrenting as “conspiracy to commit copyright infringement,” which is a criminal offense.
So far, no VPN company has been taken to court for disclosing the activities of its customers. However, this does not guarantee future actions. Therefore, TorGuard’s office location makes them potentially vulnerable to pressure from lawyers or government agencies, such as the NSA.
The company’s blog includes an article covering a discussion of how the service implements the registry. The company’s policy is to comply with legal requirements and deliver a blank hard drive if forced by legal action. In this way, copyright lawyers have the right to see your operating system, without customer information being stored on it.
The support system is very comprehensive and serves as one of TorGuard’s strengths. Most help resources can be accessed from the “support” tab in the “customer area” menu on the TorGuard website.
The knowledge base has an extensive library of guides, and support technicians also frequent the community forum. However, the fastest way to get answers to your problems is to access the live chat. However, the live chat is not always attended, and when it is unmanned, you will see the “chat now” message change to “leave us your message”.
If you leave a message, TorGuard support staff will respond to you by email. Overall, the support staff was very courteous and helpful in live chat, but a bit more slippery in email contact. I got an instant response to my question about the location of TorGuard’s offices when I asked on live chat, but interestingly, the email support agent kept dodging the issue. If you want to learn more about this great provider now, click the button below.
TorGuard has a technical problem you should know about. When I first installed the application and tried to connect, I received an error message. After asking the support staff for a solution to this problem, I was advised to disable IPv6 leak prevention, which did fix the problem, but made me worry about IPv6 leaks. It appears that this is a technical glitch that the staff is aware of, so hopefully they are busy working on a fix.
Overall, I think it’s a shame that the shared IP service can’t reach most streaming services. The speeds offered by this VPN service are very fast, and it would be great to log into HBO GO or Netflix and watch some movies on the go.
The option to get a dedicated IP address to access streaming is an alternative solution, but it increases the cost of the service over that of other VPNs, which work with US streaming sites; see our ExpressVPN review and our VPNArea review for examples of such services.
Choosing a VPN is never easy, especially when you are a beginner who is about to purchase their very first plan. There are so many providers to choose from!
Based on longterm testing, average download speed when using TorGuard is Mbit/s. Currently, the size of their network is around 1600 servers.
The size of the server network is an important factor as it determines a global availability of the VPN. The bigger the network is, the more reliable the service can be.
The download speed is very important too, especially in today's fast-paced world. If your VPN speed is too slow, many websites or streaming services may not work or the experience will definitely be less comfortable.