How to use VPN on Linux (Tips and Instructions)

Anton P. | August 30, 2023

Learning how to use VPN on Linux requires basic knowledge of running commands via the terminal. However, you can take it further by setting up a VPS server infused with a protocol like OpenVPN. 

Whichever option you choose, we have you covered! Atlas VPN supports Linux Ubuntu operating systems, with more distributions coming soon. But if you decide to manually prepare a VPN on your device, we are here to help you through this journey.

Learn how to use VPN on Linux.

Why use VPN on Linux

Multiple reasons should encourage you to use Virtual Private Network (VPN) on Linux computers or other devices: 

  • Privacy benefits mean that you get to hide internet traffic and IP addresses. While this does not help against all tracking, it does provide more privacy for your activities. 
  • Security advantages include more protection against packet sniffing, DDoS attacks, and man-in-the-middle attacks
  • Accessibility benefits mean you have more control over what content you can access. For instance, you can access local content from back home by connecting to VPN servers in your country when abroad. 
  • Convenience perks mean that you can evade certain unwanted features of the digital world (like price discrimination). 
  • Additional advantages include other features that the VPN client offers. 

Privacy is a BIG DEAL!

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How to pick a VPN provider

If you decide to go for a VPN provider, you should consider the following aspects: 

  • Read multiple reviews from experts and users. 
  • Learn more about the product: protocols, encryption, and techniques used. 
  • Free VPNs can be helpful, but you must verify that they do not engage in suspicious activities.
  • A VPN should follow a no-logs policy, preventing the service from logging or tracking users’ activities.
  • A 30-day money-back guarantee gives you time to test premium subscription plans.

How to use VPN on Linux manually

One option for using a VPN on Linux is setting up the VPN connection manually. 

These instructions help you prepare OpenVPN connections on Linux VPS. Remember that you need an account with root access or sudo privileges. The firewall should also allow TCP traffic over port 943 and UDP traffic over port 1194. 

You can find detailed instructions on how to use OpenVPN on Linux here

However, while the process gets explained in detail, juggling OpenVPN configuration files is not for everyone. Thus, you can skip the guides and learn how to use a VPN service without much preparation. 

How to use VPN on Linux through service provider 

VPN clients come equipped to serve you with little configuration. However, Linux operating systems need more care when thoroughly preparing the VPN. Luckily, the instructions are simple and take only a few minutes to complete. 

We take Atlas VPN setup as an example for how to use VPN on Linux. Similar guides should work on different products. 

Keep in mind that Atlas VPN only supports Linux Ubuntu at the moment. We also plan to add support for other Linux distributions. 

  1. Download and install Atlas VPN package
  2. Check which repository holds the file. 
  3. Open the terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T). 
  4. Type sudo dpkg -i /path/to/atlasvpn-repo.deb command in the terminal, changing the path/to part to feature the repository. Press Enter to run it. 
  5. You will need to enter your computer password. 
  6. Now, you can prepare Atlas VPN for use. 
  7. Write the sudo apt update command in the terminal and press enter. 
  8. Enter the following common to install Atlas VPN: sudo apt install atlasvpn.
  9. Once you are done, you should see Atlas VPN for Linux successfully installed
  10. Follow the instructions for logging into your account on Linux.

How to connect to a VPN on Linux 

After installing a VPN, the next step is connecting to VPN servers. 

  1. Open the terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T). 
  2. Write the following command: atlasvpn connect and press Enter
  3. The terminal will show the types of servers you can join. Type in the number you wish to choose. Press Enter
  4. Now, the terminal shows available servers. If you pick Standard, you should see a list of servers to choose from. Pick one and press Enter
  5. You should see You have successfully connected to (selected location)
  6. Enter atlasvpn disconnect command to disconnect from servers. 

Other tips for using VPN on Linux 

Atlas VPN offers multiple server categories. For instance, SafeSwap and MultiHop+ perform IP address rotation. So, you get to hide behind several IP addresses. Such protection is perfect for privacy-conscious users. Also, it helps to confuse online advertisers.

Anton P.

Anton P.

Former chef and the head of Atlas VPN blog team. He's an experienced cybersecurity expert with a background of technical content writing.

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