VPN protocol support
We support a variety of protocols on all platforms. Why is this important?
Each protocol has particular advantages and some users have a clear preference, but quite often it’s just a case of using whichever works for you – some networks and wifi routers don’t support all protocols so we give you a choice.
Protocol supported by our apps
Global VPN, VPN Asia, UK / US VPN, Euro VPN, Budget VPN, Onion VPN
Mac: By default your app will install two profiles, PPTP and L2TP. Try both profiles, then if they don’t work you can try OpenVPN. Click here for instructions on how to set up OpenVPN on your Mac.
If you think your network is blocking VPN traffic you can also access our most powerful tunnelling technology, OpenVPN over SSH. To do that you’ll need to set up a FlowVPN account – there’s no cost and your VPN subscription will be copied to your new FlowVPN account.
To create your FlowVPN account just select the blue ‘account’ button on your VPN app’s main page and create an account. You’ll be sent an email with a link in it that will take you to the FlowVPN client area where you’ll find configuration instructions.
iPhone / iPad: If you use iOS 8 or 9 your VPN app will install PPTP, L2TP and IKEv2 profiles. Try them all, then if you still can’t connect, try OpenVPN – you can find instructions for configuring OpenVPN here.
If your device is running iOS 8 or 9 but doesn’t have an IKEv2 profile, open the app, go to the Subscription page and select ‘reconfigure device’. Follow the prompts and an IKEv2 profile will be installed.
Android: Your app enables you to connect via OpenVPN. We also support PPTP and L2TP for Android via FlowVPN. To create a FlowVPN account:
1. Open your VPN app and select the blue ‘account’ button
2. Create an account with your email address
3. You’ll receive an email with a link to verify your address. Click the link and you’ll be taken to the FlowVPN client area where you’ll find instructions to manually configure PPTP and L2TP profiles.
Protocols for FlowVPN users
Mac: Downloading a configuration file will result in the installation of PPTP and L2TP protocols, then in addition you can manually configure OpenVPN and OpenVPN over SSH – this is our most powerful tunnelling technology and often succeeds when other protocols are blocked. Click here for configuration instructions.
iPhone / iPad: Downloading and installing a configuration file create PPTP and L2TP, plus IKEv2 profiles for users of iOS 8 and later. Click here to download a configuration file.
Android: Flow VPN supports manual configuration of PPTP and L2TP profiles. Click here for instructions on configuring Android devices.
Windows: At the moment Flow VPN supports PPTP connections and we are planning to add more protocols soon. Click here for instructions on configuring VPN for Windows.
About VPN protocols
The main advantage of PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol) is that it’s really easy to set up. Apple iOS and OS X, Android and all versions of Windows since Windows 95 have built-in support for VPN over PPTP. There aren’t many configuration options so few places where you can go wrong, so it’s therefore a good choice for anyone who is new to VPN or not especially confident meddling with their device’s settings.
Available on Windows, Android, Apple iOS and OS X
L2TP with IPsec
L2TP itself doesn’t offer any encryption so we implement it with IPSec, making it very secure.
Like PPTP, most operating systems have support for L2TP built in so it’s easy to get started. There’s only one extra field to populate over PPTP and we publish step-by-step instructions. so this is another good option for beginners.
Available on Android, Apple iOS and OS X
OpenVPN a relatively new VPN protocol and is sometimes considered to be more secure than other protocols. It uses OpenSSL encryption for both data and control channels and has lots of configuration options including different authentication methods, and it can be configured to run on any port.
Where support for PPTP and L2TP protocols tends to be built into operating systems, OpenVPN requires the installation of client software so getting set up is a longer process.
OpenVPN over SSH – available exclusively to Mac users – is especially useful in situations where VPN protocols are blocked as it disguises your traffic so firewalls can’t tell that you’re using a VPN.
Available now for Mac, coming soon for iOS and Android
IKE v2 is another relatively new protocol. It’s widely considered to be fast, very secure and has the added talent of being more stable than other protocols when switching between wifi and mobile networks.
Currently available exclusively on iOS when downloading a configuration file