You’ve probably heard numerous stories about torrent users being tracked online and targeted by copyright-protection agencies. With that said, if you plan on downloading torrent files, you shouldn’t think twice about using a P2P VPN. And considering that uTorrent is among the most popular torrent clients right now, we’ll show you how to use uTorrent with a VPN app.
Our goal for this article is to show you how to protect and anonymize your P2P traffic. So, no matter what kinds of files you download, several protective layers will keep your privacy away from anyone's prying eyes. Therefore, let's talk about using uTorrent with a VPN in seven simple steps, as explained below.
Step #1: Get a (Reputable & Trustworthy) VPN
First and foremost, make sure to pick a VPN that’s optimized for P2P traffic. Keep in mind that many VPNs don’t allow P2P traffic on their servers, or they might not be optimized for that kind of Web data flow.
Based on in-depth testing of over 60 VPN services, by far the best option you have right now is ExpressVPN. With this VPN, you get over 3,000 servers worldwide, all of which support P2P traffic. Of course, plenty more features await, so go ahead and read our ExpressVPN review.
If you’d like to check other options, our overview of the best VPNs for torrenting should be your next Web destination. And also, there are some free P2P VPNs out there as well, which might be suitable for really light torrenting as those come with bandwidth limitations.
Step #2: Set Up the VPN Software
Next, you need to set up your chosen VPN software. Keep in mind that you need to have an active VPN session in the background every time you plan to open uTorrent and download P2P files. In other words, your VPN needs to run on your device locally (preferably as a native application).
And if you plan to listen to our advice and subscribe to ExpressVPN, know that you’ll get a VPN that supports more than 60 platforms and devices. If you decide to go that route, here’s how to download, install, and use ExpressVPN (on any device).
Step #3: Enable Your VPN’s Data Leak Protection
We can’t talk about how to use uTorrent with a VPN without instructing you to create a leak-free environment. That’s precisely what VPNs offer, so you need to ensure that your VPN connection doesn’t leak any DNS or IPv6 information.
Before you start downloading P2P files, make sure to take a very good look at your VPN app’s settings. For example, ExpressVPN offers a way to prevent IPv6 leaks (by going to ExpressVPN’s Preferences > Advanced), which comes enabled by default.
To learn how to check if your VPN works properly, click on the provided link. You’ll find a 5-step guide there, instructing you to check for IP, DNS, and WebRTC leaks. Once your VPN passes those tests, you’ll be well on your way towards downloading P2P files anonymously.
Step #4: Enable Your VPN’s Kill-Switch
When using uTorrent with a VPN, make sure to have a kill-switch enabled from the get-go. That is what will keep you safe if your VPN connection drops unexpectedly (which can happen at any moment). To learn more, here's what to know about a VPN kill switch.
Enabling your VPN’s kill switch is done via its settings/preferences. For example, ExpressVPN gives you access to its option via Preferences > General. Then, take a look at the bottom of that page, where it says 'Network Lock.' Make sure to tick the box next to 'Stop all Internet traffic if the VPN disconnects unexpectedly.'
Once you enable this option, your Internet connection will work only if you have an active VPN session. So, if something goes sideways, your access to the Internet will be blocked, preventing your torrenting-related activities from being exposed online.
Step #5: Pick the Right Server Location
When it comes to downloading torrents, you should think twice before connecting to a VPN server. That’s because (in most cases) not all servers are optimized for P2P traffic, so find the one with a symbol indicating that it works with P2P. If there’s no such symbol present in your VPN’s interface, it either supports P2P via all of its servers or doesn’t support P2P at all.
Besides that, we recommend using a country with more relaxed P2P-related laws, such as the Netherlands, Switzerland, Mexico, or Spain. Of course, use servers in those countries only if your VPN offers P2P-optimized servers there.
To continue exploring this topic, here’s how to choose the best country to connect to using a VPN. And also, you’ll want to check whether it’s safe to use a VPN server in your own country?
Step #6: Configure uTorrent for Speed & Privacy
By default, you can use uTorrent with a VPN even without tinkering with the torrent client’s settings. However, changing a few things there can go a long way. With that said, we recommend doing the following tweaks:
- Make sure that uTorrent isn’t blocked by a firewall or any other Internet security software that has a firewall built-in (Options > Preferences > Connection > Add Windows Firewall Exception).
- Enable UPnP port mapping for easier peer-to-peer communication between devices, letting you achieve faster Web speeds (Options > Preferences > Connection > Enable UPnP Port Mapping).
- Disable uTP (Micro Transport Protocol) and bandwidth management, which lifts the limits imposed on your P2P traffic (Options > Preferences > BitTorrent).
To get more tips on how to configure uTorrent for speed and privacy, as well as to learn more about the tips mentioned above (with screenshots included), we've prepared a separate guide for you - on how to configure uTorrent. Besides that, here are the 10 best tips on how to make uTorrent faster.
Step #7: Start Downloading Torrent Files!
You are now ready to start downloading torrent files. However, make sure to connect to a VPN server first. So, use your VPN’s interface to pick a server and make sure to initialize a VPN session. Once you do that, all your P2P traffic will flow through a secure tunnel – and that’s how you’ll get to use uTorrent with a VPN!
If you'd like some suggestions on where to find torrent files, we have some recommendations for you. Here are the best torrent sites overall. And also, make sure to check these torrent search engines as well.
Those would be the seven steps to use uTorrent with a VPN. If you have any questions on your mind, let us know via the comments section below. And finally, thank you for reading!