AirVPN Vs PIA: Excellent VPNs Matched Up

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Do you wish to stay anonymous while surfing the web? AirVPN might be the best service for you if yes.

While anybody can declare to be unique these days, when it pertains to VPN providers, AirVPN reveals that it genuinely is.

AirVPN stands out from other VPN services because of its commitment to securing user privacy. From the start, the AirVPN website begins with an appeal for your trust, specifying, “A VPN based on OpenVPN and operated by activists and hacktivists in defence of net neutrality, privacy and against censorship”.While anybody can declare to be distinct these days, when it comes to VPN companies, AirVPN shows that it genuinely is.

AirVPN Home Page

They’ve been around a long time, since 2010, when it was started with the aid of 2 lawyers and a little group of activists and hackers. The satellite communications provider Iridium formerly ran it, however AirVPN took control of in November 2012. According to the owner’s listing, AirVPN, based in Perugia, is currently owned by Paolo Brini (Italy).

Throughout the last years, it hasn’t been dogged by security scandals like some VPNs have. Nor has it been acquired by a bigger company either.

Throughout their About Us and Mission pages, the business’s history is described and details the privacy projects that AirVPN has actually developed or supported. These consist of an online encryption tool, a net neutrality monitor, and other projects such as Tor, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and WikiLeaks.

AirVPN takes the non-traditional route and breaks the mold by supplying a VPN designed by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.

So how does AirVPN stack up against its rivals with such strong personal privacy qualifications?

AirVPN’s Key Features

Servers

AirVPN’s network is much smaller sized than a lot of, with just 246 servers spread throughout 23 nations.

Most servers are in Europe (other than those in the United States, Canada, and Hong Kong). A small concern here is that the absence of variety of servers decreases the number of worldwide AirVPN users who may access geo-restricted services in their home country while maintaining their personal privacy.

AirVPN Servers

That stated, Air is well known for its exceptional performance across its server network, with numerous nations having high-performance physical individual servers.

They use transparent bandwidth allocation strategies to provide an accurate assessment of performance, without any overbooking or overselling. Plus, they are entirely unlimited, with no speed restrictions or time limits.

To establish a connection between your machine and their servers, they utilize OpenVPN and WireGuard (in beta). OpenVPN is the most trustworthy and protected method to create encrypted tunnels. It offers more security than the military.

Various ports and protocols are readily available; they use OpenVPN on the following ports: 80 TCP/UDP, 443 TCP/UDP, and 53 TCP/UDP. Furthermore, every Air server directly supports OpenVPN over SSH, OpenVPN over SSL, and OpenVPN over Tor. Forget about PPTP and other hazardous protocols.

No choice is given to any application, service, or protocol when it comes down to it. Net Neutrality is maintained. Significantly, you can overcome web constraints such as avoiding censorship, geographical restrictions, and traffic shaping.

The usage is OpenVPN is a big plus as it automatically improves users’ privacy and security and is extremely reputable. The absence of WireGuard as standard may show Air isn’t rather keeping up with its competitors. That said, AirVPN says it is evaluating WireGuard, however it will not put the newer protocol completely in place till some of its technical and personal privacy problems are resolved.

AirVPN has also included a lot for power users and tech-savvy people who like to try out things.

Switching is limitless, so if you do not like one server, you can quickly change servers as frequently as you like.

You can keep an eye on the present load on each server, any existing problems, and a history of previous problems on AirVPN’s network status page (which opens in a new tab).

There is a detailed specifications page for AirVPN’s servers, with information like the available ports, protocols, DNS server details (AirVPN has its own DNS server), and the IP addresses of each VPN server’s access points.

All of it is nice, however because there is no third-party audit, you need to rely on that what is being used will work. However looking at the active community forum or the comprehensive open-source clients puts your mind at ease.

A great aspect of this is that you can see what other people say about the service prior to registering. You do not need to take their word for it or the word of an audit.

Just How Private Is AirVPN, & Does It Keep Logs?

When it comes to AirVPN’s no-logging policy, the business is extremely clear. Online personal privacy and security are the outright priority, with defense from snoopers, data miners, and other entities that attack personal privacy. There is no personal information logged by AirVPN, which has a strong no-logging, tracking, or monitoring policy.

AirVPN does not track what you do when you’re connected to the VPN, date/time stamps, or your IP address. It only collects non-identifiable “technical information” to keep the server running and enhance services, however you can request for this details to be erased at any time. This makes it one of the most privacy-friendly VPN services.

As a result, nobody can identify you online; not even your ISP can tell what sort of traffic or protocol you’re using.

There’s no listening in, so you can connect to any wireless network without stressing over your computer system and the Wi-Fi hotspot spying on your data.

Even the most ruthless surveillance, censoring, throttling, and traffic shaping techniques will fail versus AirVPN due to the fact that your ISP and government will only see TCP or UDP communication on a single port.

They also state they follow EU personal privacy policies which any servers outside the EU will be treated with the exact same or greater levels of privacy and information protection as those in the EU.

You can get a brand-new IP address to conceal your IP so that no one can use it to learn who you are. You’ll stay safe with the top-level protection provided.

If your ISP or country blocks OpenVPN, you can still connect to an AirVPN server through OpenVPN over SSH, SSL, or Tor.

Open-source clients and a lively community forum enable you to get a sense of what present users are stating about the service before registering.

All of AirVPN’s software is open-source, which is a huge plus. This suggests that anyone can check out AirVPN’s security. ProtonVPN, Private Internet Access, and Mullvad VPN have open-source apps, but just ProtonVPN’s apps have actually been examined by a third party.

Concerning security, AirVPN’s cryptography is perhaps the very best available. It’s similar to that of some other service providers, however still worth pointing out. The very first exchange uses 4096-bit RSA to accomplish Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS) by means of Diffie-Hellman key exchange. Following the first key negotiation, re-keying happens every 60 minutes, and the user can reduce this value. The main information channel utilizes AES-256-CBC encryption.

When creating an account, you are not required to input any personal information, not even your real email address. That’s great because it lets you avoid leaving any sort of digital footprint. Be mindful that you will not be able to change your account’s password if you do not utilize one.

Italy, where AirVPN is based, belongs to the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances (a group of nations that share intelligence information). Even if the federal government asked for user information, AirVPN would have absolutely nothing to give them.

Who Or What Is Eddie??

The Eddie UI is the name of AirVPN’s primary open-source application, readily available on all significant platforms and OSes, including Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android. Regardless of Eddie’s substantial capability with OpenVPN, it does not yet support WireGuard, so performance isn’t rather as excellent as those suppliers who utilize it as requirement.

AirVPN Eddie Overview

Setting up the app is simple, and it has all the details you need to connect to a VPN.

There are no maps or clearly indicated buttons to direct you. While it’s not hard to get things working, it doesn’t have the most user-friendly interface, so it may be a more difficult learning curve for inexperienced users.

With Windows, there are a load of download choices. There are builds for numerous running systems (from Windows XP to Windows 11), in 32- and 64-bit flavors, and in installable or portable formats. In addition, there’s a changelog to describe what’s new and an archive of past releases in case the most existing doesn’t operate on your setup.

After introducing it, select ‘Connect to a recommended server,’ and the app will connect to your closest area. When you’re completed, you just click Disconnect. Easy enough for anybody, however Eddie can do a lot more since AirVPN uses more fine-tuned complete control over operations than any other VPN app we’ve seen.

AirVPN Eddie Servers List

Two essential AirVPN features through Eddie are its auto-connect and kill switch. AirVPN allows you to connect when your computer launches, but you can’t select which VPN server it will connect to; it will always connect to the one you selected last.

Although it defines “kill switch” anywhere in the settings, AirVPN has actually a tab called “network lock” that does the exact same thing. The distinction is that AirVPN’s “network lock” stops all traffic that isn’t going through its secure tunnel. Most basic kill switches only do this when the VPN is on, however you can set up the “network lock” to filter your traffic at all times.

Eddie’s layout is easy to understand. Along the top, there are 6 tabs: Overview, Servers, Countries, Speed, Stats, and Logs.

The Overview just displays the server to which you are connected, the download and upload speeds, the exit IP address, and the connection time. This is where you log into your account.

The Servers page shows all available servers in the network, together with detailed details about every one, such as the server’s label, area, latency in milliseconds from your location, and current users and server load. Remarkable stuff!

This tab likewise has an amber/green signal that lets you understand whether a server is suggested for you.

The Countries page displays the number of servers readily available in each nation at a look, together with an indicator of server load and user numbers. Similar to the Servers page, the amber/green sign is also revealed. Numerous servers have up to 1000 Mb/s bandwidth, while some smaller ones have a 100 Mb/s connection.

A green checkmark, a red “X,” and a blank box can be found on the right rail of the Countries tab. Highlight a country, click the green checkmark, and the servers for that country will appear on the Servers tab. This whitelist is essentially a favorites list; you might pick as numerous nations as you like.

If you click the red “x”, that nation will be removed, successfully making it a blocklist/denylist. To remove the green checkmark from a nation, click the empty box.

By selecting a country, you are not right away connected to a VPN server. To do so, return to the Servers page and choose the server you desire in a specific nation. Connect to a server by marking it and clicking on the “sign out” icon on the right-hand side (a right-facing arrow pointing into a square bracket). There are likewise a checkmark, “X,” and blank box icons. There’s likewise a “refresh” button to get updated details on ping times and load times.

The Speed tab displays an easy throughput graph with thin plot lines. Its temporal resolution can be altered, so you can see traffic from the last 10 seconds to one day.

While a lot of apps display your current VPN server location and IP address at most. Eddie’s Stats page also reveals fine-grained details, such as the server’s location, load, existing user count, protocol, port, encryption algorithm, session start time and length, IPv6 exit address, information downloaded and uploaded, and far more.

Power users, in particular, should value the capability to utilize a VPN with all the details they might ever want about the different locations, down to the number of users on a particular server. It’s a valuable resource.

Lastly, Logs is a comprehensive record of connections, routes, and other data.

This allows you to fine-tune the setup, such as whether it must constantly connect when opened, which protocol to use between UDP and TCP, and which port number. Proxies, Tor support, custom DNS servers, and routes can be modified.

The really knowledgeable user can enter into Advanced and Expert Mode settings, which permit, among other things, sending orders to the OpenVPN Management Interface via the Logs pane.

If the large feature list appears scary, even if you are a VPN professional, it might be hard to find out what particular settings do and how to get the desired results. In addition, it is unlike any other service in terms of customization.

However, don’t dismiss AirVPN’s Eddie even if of its intricacy. Remember that the program typically works fine by itself, and you’ll never ever see the settings up until you try to find them. If you periodically crave power or configurability, the app will supply it.

AirVPN Software Configurations

Suppose you do not wish to use Eddie. In that case, you can also set up a router or firewall to send all traffic through a VPN tunnel. This works with routers running the open-source DD-WRT and Tomato firmware and the FreeBSD-based pfSense firewall.

How Good Is AirVPN’s Mobile App?

Although there isn’t any VPN software for iOS, you can utilize an incredibly feature-rich Android VPN app rather. This software provides the same extensive setup options as its desktop sibling and helpful status information.

Separate pages for nation and server lists are what the Android app lacks that the desktop versions provides. Instead, you can expand a country and choose a particular city on the exact same page. Some useful text additions make the information more understandable, but it’s still quite challenging to understand in some spots.

Android does not have as many settings as Windows. That’s not a significant critique; there are still a lot more than the majority of people will ever require. The software application likewise attempts a little more to assist you, with additional text subtitles to describe what each option does.

Speeds/Performance

Using OpenVPN, the Eddie Windows app from AirVPN generally connects quickly and is ready to go in less than 10 seconds.

Online reviewers felt the connection monitoring was great, with the app spotting when the VPN tunnel drops, informing us with a desktop notification, and reconnecting us in seconds.

In regards to privacy, leak tests showed that AirVPN’s Windows client didn’t have any DNS leaks, which reveals that the Network Lock/Kill Switch works well.

Now let’s get to those speeds.

It was always going to be slower than the WireGuard-equipped competitors since AirVPN only supports OpenVPN.

Nevertheless, reviewers have reported speeds to be outstanding. One stated there wasn’t a single nation where they might grumble about the speed. On the contrary, it was really excellent overall.

While it wasn’t quite at the top tier for VPNs that utilize WireGuard, it was still more than fast enough for the majority of people, and circumstances like HD streaming, video gaming, and video conferencing definitely won’t slow you down.

What AirVPN lacks is a wider variety of server places. This might restrict the availability of close-by servers for some users (which will constantly result in better speeds). As a result, this VPN is an outstanding choice for most people in the United States and Europe, however possibly less so for other areas.

Streaming

Streaming the huge services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Apple Television, Hulu, HBO, BBC iPlayer, and Discovery+ has been a mixed bag for reviewers. Some report that AirVPN is effective enough to bypass the VPN blocks used by Netflix in the U.S.A., whereas others do not.

Some report that Air is quite poor for streaming and does not work with any of the major streaming services. Nevertheless, it appears to deal with less-popular streaming apps like Peacock and Sony Crackle.

Another reviewer states services like BBC iPlayer and United States Netflix seldom work, and when they do, discovering the best server needs prolonged trial and error. This is probably due to the fact that, unlike other service providers, AirVPN does not use servers that are optimised for accessing streaming websites.

Thankfully, on AirVPN’s site, there is a list of ‘blocked websites’ that users can inspect to see if the situation with these streaming sites ever changes.

Streaming is certainly not an area in which AirVPN stands out, simply since that’s not what the service is about, as they are more focused on privacy and security.

Does AirVPN Permit P2P?

Air supports P2P file-sharing on all of its servers. Simply connect to the VPN server of your choice and get going.

Plus, you can utilize port forwarding to enhance your file-sharing performance. A number of applications, such as BitTorrent and eMule clients, would run badly without it, and your computer’s shares might be inaccessible from the Internet.

File sharing has good speeds on regional servers, allows port forwarding for up to 20 ports at the same time (which lets you connect to more peers for faster speeds), and works with leading torrenting clients like qBitTorrent and uTorrent.

AirVPN’s built-in kill switch, triggered by default, will block all traffic from leaving your gadget if the VPN connection ever drops. That way, you will not be sending out unencrypted packets to the Internet. If you are file sharing, a kill switch is really practical, specifically if you need to leave your connection unattended.

Reviewers have actually revealed torrenting to be impressive, smooth running with quick download and upload speeds, and with no problems whatsoever.

AirVPN Plans & Prices

AirVPN uses a wider range of plans than many VPNs. As standard, each plan lets you connect as much as 5 devices at the same time, so you can connect your PC, phone, tablet, and a couple of other devices all at the same time.

This makes it an exceptional option for people who live in a family home or want to use a VPN on a public network. While five really should be enough for many people, other VPN suppliers provide 7 or even 10 if you require more.

Prices varies based on the subscription length, and each plan consists of the exact same features. Many plans offer good value; nevertheless, longer subscriptions provide the best offer.

The standard pricing is in Euros. They use the European Central Bank to provide real-time exchange rates for those overseas, so it can be easily transformed to and paid for in the currency of your choice.

The existing plans offered are:

Three days- EUR2

One month – EUR7

Three months – EUR15 – works out to EUR 5/month

Six months – EUR29 – works out to EUR 4.83/month

One year – EUR49 – works out to EUR 4.08/month

Two years – EUR79 – works out to EUR 3.29/month

Three years – EUR99 – works out to EUR 2.75/month

AirVPN accepts major credit cards, PayPal, Amazon Pay, and a whole load of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Doge. Lots of worldwide choices are likewise accepted, such as Alipay and Giropay.

AirVPN offers a three-day totally free trial, which can be obtained by sending out a message to the support team and using the discount coupon code they send you.

There’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee, as long as they have not broken the terms of service or used more than 5 GB of data during that time.

AirVPN Customer Assistance

AirVPN has a different customer support offering than lots of other VPNs. While it does not have live chat, it provides email assistance and frequently asked questions (FAQs) and has a really active support online forum with contributors from both the service itself and the community.

Notably, AirVPN’s e-mail assistance isn’t outsourced however can be a little inconsistent with the time it requires to get a reaction. That said, the email support is high quality, and the representatives are useful and friendly, however the comprehensive answers can be quite technical, which might put off those new to VPNs.

AirVPN’s website has a great deal of information, including a big Frequently asked questions section that is broken up by subject.

AirVPN’s community forums cover various subjects, but newbies will have the very same problems comprehending a great deal of the tech jargon in the posts.

AirVPN Pros & Cons

Pros:

No logging Whatsoever.

Excellent speeds with very little loss.

Unlimited P2P enabled with Port Forwarding.

Strong security on apps and servers alike, with advanced protocols and encryption.

Network Lock/Kill Switch.

Split tunneling.

Supports Windows, Mac, Linux, mobile, and routers.

Supports Tor over VPN.

Easy app installation and usage.

Many, many advanced settings and customization choices in the client app.

Strong Customer Service.

Active Community Forums and In-depth Guides.

Great rates, especially for longer-term plans.

Optional block lists shield you from advertisements, adware, trackers, and damaging sources.

Cons:

Only fully supports OpenVPN.

Client app isn’t really easy to use or attractive like other services.

Client app might overwhelm newer users.

It is really hit and miss with streaming services.

No native iOS or ChromeOS apps.

Perhaps there are too many advanced choices.

Found in 14-Eyes Country.

Server numbers are relatively low.

Rounding Things Up – Is AirVPN The Best Choice?

So the bottom line is that AirVPN is a strong, reliable, and safe VPN service with excellent prices. It’s clearly geared towards more power and advanced users, so those brand-new to VPNs will be much better served by a less, shall we say, specialized VPN service provider. Even new users could do much, much worse.

While it could be challenging to use if you’re brand-new to VPNs, you’ll get much quicker speeds and better results than a number of its competing VPN rivals.

When it boils down to it, this VPN service is more focused on protecting your privacy than unblocking streaming services like Netflix or Hulu.

Although it might not guarantee the exact same level of privacy and anonymity as a service like Mullvad, which assigns you a random account number and enables you to pay in cash, AirVPN is still a good option for customers who value their personal privacy.

While it does not hit the speed heights of a WireGuard service, performance-wise, it’s definitely the very best purely OpenVPN service out there. In addition to being an exceptional option for online filesharing.

Highly recommended!

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