How to setup VPN for Netgear Nighthawk router

  • Netgear routers have support for VPN server mode, allowing you to access your home network from anywhere else.
  • You can set up a VPN client on Netgear by flashing the router with custom firmware.
  • We strongly recommend using a specialized and powerful VPN, so your online traffic will always be encrypted.

Routers have distinct ways of dealing with VPN, depending on their make, model, and firmware.

If you want to add VPN to a Netgear router, you can do this in two ways: turning your router into a VPN server, or setting up a VPN client on Netgear.

The two methods are unrelated, however, as you will learn in our step-by-step guide below.

Many users are wondering what are the best virtual private network solutions for the Netgear 6200, 7000, and 8000 versions.

If you’re one of them, keep in mind that this article will show you the best options on the market.

Why should I setup a VPN on my Netgear Nighthawk?

Nighthawk allows you to use a VPN connection to access your own Internet service when you’re away from home.

In case you’re still not sure why you should run such a solution, do not forget that it is great for the times when you travel to a geographic location that doesn’t support all the Internet services that you use at home.

Plus, you should also use a VPN router if you have a device that you exclusively want to connect to a VPN server alone and never to your regular connection.

How do I setup a VPN on my Netgear router?

  1. Make sure your device is connected to the router‘s Wi-Fi network.
  2. Using a web browser, access the Netgear official website.
  3. From the top-right corner of the window, hover the mouse over the login icon, then click on Sign In.
  4. Input your Email address and password, then click on the NETGEAR Sign In button.
  5. Go to Settings.
  6. Navigate to Advanced Settings, then to VPN Service.
  7. Check the Enable VPN Service option.
  8. At Clients will use this VPN connection to access, pick All sites on the Internet & Home Network.
  9. Click Apply.
  10. Click For WindowsFor non-Windows, or For Smart Phone to download the OpenVPN config files.
  11. Download the OpenVPN client and set it up on the device you want to use for accessing your home network (e.g. smartphone, tablet, laptop).
  12. Copy the OpenVPN file from Netgear to the OpenVPN configuration folder on the device.
  13. You can now access your home network through OpenVPN.

As you can see, it is pretty simple to set up a VPN for your Netgear router. When you do it home, you don’t have to spend any money since the Netgear firmware supports VPN server mode. You just have to use the OpenVPN client, which is free and open source.

Once connected to your home network, you can access your files and printers, share photos or videos, and even map network drives over VPN – just as if you were sitting in front of your computer at home.

On the other hand, you can’t use this solution to unblock websites, for example. It’s not the same as downloading a VPN client on your device and using it to create a secure tunnel on the web.

What about adding a VPN client to Netgear?

Unfortunately, Netgear firmware doesn’t support VPN client mode. On the bright side, it lets you install custom firmware, such as TomatoDD-WRT, or OpenWRT.

We’re talking about free and open-source firmware that gives you the possibility to install a VPN client directly at the router level.

Once you install the new firmware, all you need to do is purchase a premium VPN subscription plan, download its OpenVPN configuration files, and add them to your Netgear router.

From that point on, you will be able to protect your home network from hackers, remain anonymous when browsing the web, unblock Netflix US from anywhere else in the world, find cheaper flights with a VPN, and more. It depends on how good your VPN is.

What are the best VPNs for Netgear routers?

1. Private Internet Access

Made by Kape Technologies, Private Internet Access is a top VPN for Netgear router that is definitely worth being set up, thanks to its superior security features and excellent speed.

You can connect to more than 3,300 VPN servers in 48 countries, watch Netflix US from anywhere, as well as to access Hulu and other streaming services.

PIA supports OpenVPN with up to 256-bit military-grade encryption, ensuring that no one can decipher your data over the web.

It also uses the WireGuard protocol, Shadowsocks, and SOCKS5 proxy servers, split tunneling, native port forwarding, and an emergency kill switch.

You can easily set up PIA on routers with custom firmware using OpenVPN manual configuration mode.

Meanwhile, its native app can be installed on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS. It allows up to 10 simultaneous device connections through the same account.

More about PIA:

  • No logs or leaks
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • No free trial
Private Internet Access

Private Internet Access

Easily set up a VPN client on Netgear routers using this fast and secure VPN.
Check price Visit website

2. NordVPN

NordVPN works with a strict no-logs policy, offering thousands of servers in over 50 countries around the world and you can easily set up this VPN for your Netgear router.

Keep in mind that most routers can be manually set up with NordVPN, but you can also buy routers with pre-installed VPN software.

You can also install NordVPN on various devices like Amazon Fire Stick or Android TVs. The VPN works with Kodi and Roku too if you install NordVPN on your router.

NordVPN is able to unblock some of the most popular worldwide streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, or BBC iPlayer.

Check out more about NordVPN:

  • OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols
  • Allows you to create up to 6 simultaneous connections
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • User-friendly and intuitive interface


Check price Visit website

3. SurfShark

With its latest upgrade, SurfShark is offering now the opportunity to choose from over 3,000 servers located in more than 60 countries.

This VPN is extremely versatile, being compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux, Fire TV, Apple TV, other TVs, PlayStation, Xbox, Chrome & Firefox, and routers.

When it comes to privacy protection, SurfShark does a great job with its AES-256 encryption, plus the secure protocols OpenVPN UDP and TCP, IKEv2, and WireGuard.

Like any other premium secure software, this one doesn’t collect IP addresses, Internet activity history, VPN server location history, bandwidth usage, etc.

In addition, our experiments indicated that SurfShark is extremely fast, providing impressive speeds while navigating through the Internet.

Take a look at more SurfShark Features:

  • Unblocks the most popular streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, iPlayer, Disney +, or Amazon Prime Video
  • Kill Switch feature
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Camouflage Mode


Check price Visit website

Is there any good free VPN for Netgear?

In case the budget is concerning you, keep in mind that there are several free VPN options available on the market, that you can test.

However, you should know that this kind of option won’t offer a smooth and complete experience as the premium one does.

Paid VPNs usually tend to provide much more powerful encryption tools, so cybercriminals won’t get a chance to access your personal data.

Even if free versions might sound like a good deal, if we were in your shoes, we would still go for Private Internet Access, as it seems to be the most impressive software on the market.

To recap, there are two ways to use a VPN on Netgear: turn the router into a VPN server for free, flash it with custom firmware for free and then install a paid VPN client.

If you’re looking for a way to set up a VPN on your router so that all your home devices can use the secure tunnel to get online and unblock websites, then you must use the second option. And we can’t think of a better VPN than PIA.

Leave a Comment