Getting booted is every gamer’s nightmare. Unfortunately, it’s a popular tactic some use to gain an unfair advantage.
To do that, they flood your device with unwanted traffic, using your IP address.
So, since a VPN (a virtual private network) can help hide your IP, can it prevent getting booted?
Let’s find out.
What does getting booted mean?
The term booted typically refers to being forcefully removed or disconnected from a gaming session.
In most cases, a malicious opposing player could boot you out of a gaming session.
The opposing player can do this by launching a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on your computer.
The attacker floods your computer with traffic, overwhelming your system and causing it to disconnect from the game. Therefore, effectively booting you out of the session.
However, booting isn’t always a result of an attack by your opponent. The game server could kick you out as well.
This can happen if the game’s moderation system detects that you’ve violated the game’s rules or engaged in disruptive behavior.
Additionally, technical problems with your connection or the game server itself can cause the issue
Can you get booted if you have a VPN?
In most cases no. However, some booters use other data that your VPN can’t hide to start an attack.
To be able to boot you out of a gaming session, your opponent needs to specifically attack your IP address.
What does the VPN do? It hides your real IP and encrypts your internet traffic.
This process allows you to use the internet anonymously, making it almost impossible for someone to attack you specifically.
Based on this, a VPN should be able to stop booting.
→ However, IP masking is not foolproof and may not provide complete protection against booting.
Some skilled booters may still be able to bypass the IP masking technique using other methods like browser fingerprinting.
This works by putting together the information sent by your browsers to the sites you access, which may include location, language, device model, and so on.
If they gather enough info, they may get to your IP and attack you even if you use VPN.
As mentioned earlier, not all bookings are a result of cyber-attack. Game admins can also try to boot you for going against the game’s regulations.
To put it simply, because it conceals your real IP the VPN will be able to prevent booting in most cases.
→ Although using VPN prevents getting booted to some extent, it can also be the reason why it happens.
Let me explain.
Some game servers or platforms may have mechanisms in place to detect the use of VPNs.
If the gaming website discovers a VPN connection, it may interpret it as a violation of the game’s terms of service. This may cause the game to remove you from the session.
Nevertheless, switching to a different VPN server will solve the problem in most cases.
On that note, there are a few things you can do to prevent booting when using VPN.
How to optimize VPN connection to avoid getting booted
Using a reputable VPN is very important if you want to avoid anyone kicking you out of a game.
→ Besides that, it’s important to consider the speed and server location options of your VPN.
In terms of speed, you can find online reviews and reports and test the VPN yourself if it has a free trial.
When it comes to locations, it’s best to get a VPN that has servers close to you, but also close to the game servers’ hosting regions.
This will ensure the best possible speed and will prevent geoblocking.
→ Additionally, pick a tunneling protocol that’s hard to detect. OpenVPN, WireGuard, and IKEv2 are all reliable options.
→ Another thing that can improve both your gaming and prevent disconnects that cause VPN leaks is using Ethernet instead of WiFi.
The connection becomes more direct, potentially faster, and less likely to drop.
I also recommend avoiding free VPNs. Most times they do the opposite of what a VPN should do: they log and sell data.
Luckily, the market does have quite a few reliable VPN software, and they often have nifty discounts.
VPNs are useful privacy tools that do a great job of hiding your IP and traffic data from malicious users.
That said, malicious users may use another type of data to get to you and attempt to kick you off the game. However, that’s way less likely and in most cases, you can’t get booted if you use VPN.