The Best Free VPNs for Linux - Stay secure and unblock more with a free Linux VPN

Because Linux is so open and configurable it's important that users take every step to improve their privacy, and a VPN is one of the best ways to do that. However, if paying for a VPN isn't a viable option, then using a free VPN for Linux is better than none (or at least it should be). There are many free VPNs, but although they don't cost you money, they often come at the cost of your privacy.

In this article, we compare the best free VPNs for Linux, and explore the pros, cons, and alternatives to using a free service.

What are the best free VPNs for Linux?

We have listed the best free VPNs for Linux below. These services all have the security features you need in order to stay secure on Linux. We take a closer look at our recommendation below.

  1. ProtonVPN - The best free VPN for Linux. It has no data limits and has an OpenVPN which can be install via Linux terminal.
  2. Hide.me - A great free VPN for Linux users. It has 5 free servers and can unblock streaming services. Has great Linux installation guides.
  3. Windscribe - This VPN Offers support for multiple Linux distros and has free servers in 10 countries.
  4. TunnelBear - This a Fully-featured but limited usage. It offers users servers in Japan, US, and The UK and has excellent encryption.
  5. VPNBook - This is a good-all-round VPN for Linux. It has PPTP and OpenVPN for Linux users, not limits and 2 free servers.

These have been chosen because they are:

If you want to know more, keep reading.

Best free VPNs for Linux - In-depth Analysis

Here's a brief overview of the best VPNs for Linux that are completely free – no free trials or money-back guarantees, just a 100% free service. For more information on VPN providers, check out our detailed VPN reviews.

ProtonVPN is the best free VPN for Linux because it is completely uncapped and keeps no-logs. It has 3 free servers in the US, Japan, and the Netherlands. Can be installed via Linux terminal.

  • Free option

    Yes

    Pricing

    From  $3.29 - $5.00
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu

ProtonVPN offers a free VPN service with no data or speed limits whatsoever. On top of that, there are no advertisements, and no logs (bar a single connection log that is constantly overwritten and doesn't include your IP address). In fact, the free service is so good for Proton, that many users may not even feel the need to upgrade to Proton's premium plan.


With proton, you can choose from three (fairly well placed) server locations: America, Japan, and the Netherlands – giving users a good variety for geo-spoofing. The main drawback of the free VPN is that you can only use it with a single device. If you're looking for a free Linux VPN that delivers a solid service, then ProtonVPN is an excellent choice.

Hide.me is a great free VPN for Linux users. It's fast, unblocks streaming sites, and doesn't required a registration. It has five free servers and detailed Linux set up guides on their website.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.43 - $12.95
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu

Hide.me is a zero-logs provider based in Malaysia that offers good encryption and a user-oriented service for both premium and free users. According to the website, Hide.me makes no money from their free VPN service – noting that internet security and privacy is a basic right. Hide.me boasts a no-ads service as part of its promise to provide a service that is well and truly free.


So what's the catch? Well, you're only allowed a single device with up to 10GB of data per month. This is quite a lot, given that the service is free, but 10GB can be used up quickly in today's data intensive society. Hide.me provides an excellent free service, but the 10GB data cap is quite a serious restriction.

Windscribe is a great free Linux VPN. It offers users a secure service with support for several Linux distros and It has servers in ten different countries.

  • Pricing

    From  $4.08 - $9.00
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix

Windscribe is a Canadian VPN service that offers a free VPN for Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and CentOS distros on Linux. What makes this free VPN stand out is that it offers over 10 countries (including the UK and US) on its free plan. Combine this with unlimited connections and, for a free VPN, Windscribe is impressive.


The biggest drawback, however, is that Windscribe only allows up to 10GB of data per month, and with multiple connections, that data cap will get hit quickly. On top of this, the free VPN's speeds are OK at best, and while Windscribe claims it can unblock geo-restricted content, we think this is limited primarily to news sites. Overall, Windscribe offers a good service, but for what it does, a premium VPN  just does it better.

Tunnelbear is a big-name VPN provider that has an excellent free version of it's service. It has servers in three countries and can be install on Linux via the linux terminal.

  • Pricing

    From  $3.33 - $9.99
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
  • Unblocks

TunnelBear is a Canadian VPN service that lets users try its free version indefinitely. With servers in Japan, the US and the UK, users have lots of choice when it comes to spoofing their geolocation, and with AES-256 encryption, your internet traffic is secure and protected. TunnelBear also publishes regular (independent) audits of its apps to ensure security – meaning users can be confident that there is no foul play (which can be common with free VPN services).


The fully featured VPN service can be tested through its free plan, with a data cap of 500MB per month. Unfortunately, 500MB a month is remarkably little. Enough for casual browsing, but nowhere near enough for streaming content. The reason for this is to entice users into purchasing the premium subscription. TunnelBear also has limited support for Linux, only offering support for Ubuntu. For a free VPN, there's some great features, but the data cap is just way too low to make it an everyday free VPN.

VPNBook offers a limitless service with strong encryption great for anyone looking for a free Linux VPN service. You can use the secure OpenVPN and PPTP with it's free Linux client.

  • Free option

    Yes

VPNBook is a free VPN that offers both PPTP and OpenVPN configurations (we recommend the latter). The service is supported through adverts that it provides, and while it does not keep activity logs, it does keep connection logs for a week. Despite that, it affords users limitless data without throttling, and at good speeds.


VPNBook also allows P2P torrenting on two of its servers – offering servers in Poland, France, Germany, and America. The VPN even lets you run TCP over Port 443 for added security, which is great for security-minded individuals. Overall, it's a decent VPN considering it's free, but it doesn't really have any features that make it truly stand out.

Why do I need a free VPN for Linux?

There are two main benefits of using a free VPN for Linux, these are as follows:

Improved online security

Using a VPN has a lot of benefits, even if that service is free. The VPNs that we recommend in this article will encrypt your online traffic and prevent your internet service providers (ISPs), governments, websites, hackers, and other third-parties from tracking and tracing you online.

The services listed in this article offer users strong encryption to ensure that you are kept secure online. We have called out what encryption protocols each of them use in the in-depth analysis section.

Unblock more content

With one of the best free VPNs for Linux, you can explore an unrestricted and open internet by spoofing your geolocation to unblock websites blocked in your location.

Unfortunately, most free VPNs do not unblock streaming services as they are too slow or their IPs are blocked by streaming sites. Some services listed in this article will unblock streaming sites, and we have highlighted these above. However, these VPNs have data limits.

Paid vs Free Linux VPN services

If you want to get the absolute best protection without sacrificing your privacy, speed, and internet usage, then paying for a VPN is the best way forward. In fact, there are some excellent premium VPNs for Linux that you can use to get the most out of your internet experience, and our number 1 pick is cheap.

Paying for a service is a great way to get uncapped, fast, and secure VPN protection without risking your security, and without third-parties tracking and tracing you online.

We recommend that you take advantage of a VPNs free trial or money-back guarantees. This way, you can get the most out premium services without having to pay the premium prices.

Get ExpressVPN for free

expressvpn logo

ExpressVPN is one of many VPN services that offers a no-quibble money-back guarantee, meaning you can use the service for 30 days and a refund. To find more about ExpressVPN's money-back guarantee, take a look at the official website.

ExpressVPN 30-day Money-back Guarantee

How to set up a free VPN for Linux

As far as we are aware, no free Linux VPN service provides a dedicated GUI client and depending on your distro and chosen VPN, the method for setting up a free VPN on Linux can vary. For this quick installation guide, we focus on how to install a free VPN on Ubuntu with OpenVPN protocol.

Installing a free VPN through the Linux Terminal

Once you have created an account with one of the free VPNs for Linux listed above, you can install a VPN in four quick steps:

  1. Install OpenVPN in Terminal through using your usual package manager (APT/RPM).
    Enter either: sudo apt-get install openvpn  or sudo rpm install openvpn
    You can also compile from source on any Linux system. Download the tarball from the OpenVPN website, then extract, change directory (cd) to the top-level of the extracted directory, and enter the following:
    ./configure
    make
    make install
  2. From your VPN provider's website, choose which servers you want to connect to and download the OpenVPN configuration files (To make the next steps easier, rename the downloaded .ovpn files into something quick and easy to type).
  3. Then open Terminal and navigate to the directory you downloaded the .ovpn files into.
  4. Enter the following in Terminal: sudo openvpn [openvpn file]

If you want to disconnect from the VPN, close the Terminal window OpenVPN is running in.

Note: if you are using OpenVPN directly, DNS requests will not be pushed to the VPN provider’s DNS servers. To resolve IP leaks, modify resolvconf to push DNS to your VPN’s DNS servers. Alternatively, you could manually configure the iptables firewall to direct all traffic (including DNS requests) through the VPN server. This will ensure that all DNS requests are proxied by your VPN, and will also act as a kill-switch.

Installing a free Linux VPN through Ubuntu Gnome

After registering an account with your chosen VPN provider:

  1. Download the .ovpn configuration files for the servers you wish to connect to. These can usually be downloaded from the provider's website.
  2. Download the Ubuntu OpenVPN packages for NetworkManager, and install by opening a Terminal window and typing: sudo apt-get install network-manager-openvpn-gnome
  3. Check that OpenVPN has installed correctly by clicking on the NetworkManager icon in the notification bar.
  4. Navigate through VPN Off > VPN Settings > VPN and click on the + button. You should now see an OpenVPN option (don't click it). If you don't see the option, try restarting your computer.
  5. If you can see the OpenVPN option, Click on "Import from file." Navigate to the .ovpn files from earlier and double-click on one to add it. This should now bring up an "Add VPN" box with all the server details.
  6. Input your Username and Password and click “Add” to complete the process.

To activate your VPN, go to NetworkManager -> VPN off -> and select the server you want to connect to.

We cover this topic in more detail in our how to install a VPN on Linux guide, check it out for more detail.

FAQs 

If you still have questions about free VPNs for Linux, check out this short list of frequently-asked-questions before using our search bar for more in-depth guides and comparisons:

Conclusion

Using a VPN with Linux is one of the best ways to protect your internet traffic from snooping ISPs, websites, hackers, or third-parties. If you want to get the most out of a VPN, then a premium subscription is the best option available, but it isn't always viable. If you can't justify the expense of a VPN, we recommend taking advantage of VPN free trials or utilizing one of our top free VPNs for Linux list here. Here's a quick reminder:

  1. ProtonVPN - The best free VPN for Linux. It has no data limits and has an OpenVPN which can be install via Linux terminal.
  2. Hide.me - A great free VPN for Linux users. It has 5 free servers and can unblock streaming services. Has great Linux installation guides.
  3. Windscribe - This VPN Offers support for multiple Linux distros and has free servers in 10 countries.
  4. TunnelBear - This a Fully-featured but limited usage. It offers users servers in Japan, US, and The UK and has excellent encryption.
  5. VPNBook - This is a good-all-round VPN for Linux. It has PPTP and OpenVPN for Linux users, not limits and 2 free servers.

Written by: Andreas Theodorou

Andreas is a Content Editor at ProPrivacy.com. Having graduated with a first-class BA (Hons) in English, he completed a Master of Research degree at Liverpool John Moores University and has continued to pursue research at every opportunity. Andreas started as a Tech Writer/Expert Reviewer at ProPrivacy before stepping up as Content Editor. An experienced writer, editor, and artist, he is currently researching video-games and popular culture in his spare time.

0 Comments

There are no comments yet.

Got Something to Say?

Write Your Own Comment

Your comment has been sent to the queue. It will appear shortly.

Your comment has been sent to the queue. It will appear shortly.

Your comment has been sent to the queue. It will appear shortly.

  Your comment has been sent to the queue. It will appear shortly.

We recommend you check out one of these alternatives:

The fastest VPN we test, unblocks everything, with amazing service all round

Longtime top ranked VPN, with great price and speeds

One of the largest VPNs, voted best VPN by Reddit

Strong presence, no-logs policy