How to Enable VPN Manually in Windows 10

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The beauty of most premier VPN services is that they have an intuitive Windows 10 app that makes setting up a connection as easy as clicking a big green button that says “connect.” However, if you’re running Windows 10 in S mode and can’t install apps from outside the Store, or you’re using a VPN without a client, you can still configure a VPN manually. This is especially important as many people move to working from home and require a VPN. Here’s everything you need to know.

Once you subscribe to a VPN service — keep in mind there are plenty of great options out there — you should have access to a list of servers that you can connect to. It will differ depending on the VPN service you’re using, but you should have access to a webpage or desktop app section that lists the server’s location, the address needed to create a manual connection, and the current load of the server.

Your VPN provider should also provide manual sign-in information that can be used as credentials. This might be some sort of username and password or certificate depending on the service.

Once you have the required information to make a connection, you can jump into settings and get everything running.

  1. Right-click the Start button.
  2. Click Settings.

  3. Click Network & Internet.
  4. Click VPN.

  5. Click Add a VPN connection.
  6. Click the dropdown menu below VPN provider.

  7. Click Windows (built-in).
  8. Click the Connection name field.

  9. Type a name for the VPN connection. (In this case, I’ll use the name of my provider and the server location.)
  10. Click the Server name or address field.

  11. Type the server’s address. (You can likely find this in your VPN account.)
  12. Click the dropdown menu below VPN type.

  13. Choose a connection protocol.
  14. Click the dropdown menu below Type of sign-in info.

  15. Click a sign-in method. (This will no doubt change depending on your VPN provider.)
  16. Click Save.

  17. Click the VPN you just set up. (It will now appear in the VPN list.)
  18. Click Connect. (Depending on the sign-in method used by your provider, you might have to enter your username and password.)

How to disconnect and remove a VPN on Windows 10

If you don’t want to use a VPN anymore, or if you just want to remove a server from the list, you can disconnect or altogether remove it. There is a VPN button for quick on and off located in the Windows 10 action center (the small speech bubble in the bottom-right corner of your display), but we’ll go through the entire process, which includes completely removing a VPN from your system.

  1. Right-click the Start button.
  2. Click Settings.

  3. Click Network & Internet.
  4. Click VPN.

  5. Click a VPN connection you want to disconnect or remove.
  6. Click Disconnect.

  7. Click Remove.
  8. Click Remove again to confirm.

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