Netflix VPN not working troubleshooting Guide

Even VPNs that work with Netflix can suffer from problems now and then. Thankfully, these can almost always be resolved. Check out our simple troubleshooting guide to get your Netflix VPN back up and running again, where we test 9 tried and tested methods.

Netflix not working? Try these 9 methods

  1. Turn it off and back on again
  2. Contact support
  3. Updating software
  4. Connect to a new server
  5. Test for leaks
  6. Disabling WebRTC
  7. Using private browsing
  8. Clearing cookies & cache
  9. Using a dedicated IP address

1) Turn it off and back on again

It’s the oldest cliche in the book, but the next thing to do is disconnect from the VPN and reconnect. Once you’ve done this, it’s time to run some tests.

2) Contact support

This might seem like a pathetic way to start a troubleshooting guide, but it’s usually worth contacting the VPN’s support team. They might be able to tell you straight away if they are experiencing issues with Netflix and suggest other servers you can try in the meantime.

Many providers now offer 24x7 live chat support so it’s worth checking in with them, just to be sure everything is working as it should. 

3) Update your software 

Your VPN app is more than a pretty face. It manages the VPN connection behind the scenes and a provider may make changes that require an update. Keeping your software up to date is good practice and can help with ironing out issues.

4) Connect to a different server

Try another server located in the country where you need it. If your VPN provider has a server that is marked “Netflix” or “streaming” - try that first. If, after this, you still can't find a server that works you will need to contact customer support directly. 

5) Test for leaks

The reason a VPN works with Netflix is that it masks your true IP address and replaces it with one that belongs to the VPN provider. However, IP addresses and other information can sometimes leak. Any mismatch will be flagged by Netflix and you will get the dreaded proxy error. 

To determine if you are suffering an IP leak, visit ipleak.net. First, run the test without using a VPN and make a note of your IP address and your DNS address. If you can see an IPv6 address, write that down too. Now close the browser, connect to your VPN and run the test again. If any of the information matches, you have a leak.

The example above shows IPv6 leaks. The IPv4 DNS result correctly shows the VPN server in the US, but the website can see our real UK IPv6 address via both a regular DNS leak and WebRTC.. 

There are a couple of things you can do if you are experiencing leaks. First, contact the support team of your VPN provider. You can also disable WebRTC.

6) Disabling WebRTC

Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) is a collection of technologies that allow web browsers to communicate directly with each other directly without the need for an intermediate server. This can improve the performance of web apps like video chat, file transfer, and live streaming.

In order for two devices to talk to each other directly via WebRTC, they need to know each other’s real IP addresses. Netflix can, therefore, exploit the WebRTC in your browser to detect your real IP address and block you from their service.

In Firefox, it is very easy to disable WebRTC altogether. In Chrome, plugging a WebRTC leak is as easy as installing an extension called Easy WebRTC Block. Using that extension will stop Chrome from leaking location data to Netflix via the WebRTC leak.

7) Use a private browser (incognito)

Another possible problem is that your browser is leaking geo-location data to Netflix. If, for example, your VPN is telling Netflix that you are in Los Angeles - but Chrome is telling Netflix that you are in Dubai - this could cause Netflix to show you the proxy error message.

To avoid this, first connect to your VPN and then open a fresh private browser. This will ignore any location data that is cached by your browser and is a great tool for troubleshooting VPN/Netflix issues. 

8) Clear your cookies and cache

If Netflix works in a private browser, you should clean your browser cache and delete cookies. Then close your browser, reopen and try again.

9) Get a dedicated IP address

Dedicated VPN IPs can actually work in one of two ways. The most common description of a dedicated IP is an IP address that is reserved for use by one customer only. This kind of VPN IP address is usually purchased as an extra or "add-on". 

However, one VPN that provides access to Netflix (PrivateVPN) actually provides dynamic, dedicated IPs every time their subscribers connect to a server using the default encryption option (OpenVPN TUN+UDP+1194). This is a fantastic workaround, that explains how PrivateVPN are often able to stay ahead of Netflix's blocks - a testament to their commitment, and the value for money of the service!

 

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 4+ years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, Barrons, the Scottish Herald, ThreatPost, CNET & many more. Ray is currently rated number 1 VPN authority by Agilience.com.

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