People who use macOS, Windows, Linux, and other OS systems should make enabling VPN a habit. However, most users enable it only when they can’t access a certain website. There’s a lot of information about the importance of VPN on the Internet, so we don’t consider it necessary to restate it. VPN stands for Virtual Private Network: it’s a generalized name of certain technologies that help Internet users establish a private connection over a public network. You can send data and receive information safely. Here are the most widespread reasons why people enable VPN:

  • Open websites with restricted access;
  • Secure private information from government, apps, and service providers;
  • Stay anonymous.

If you’ve never used this technology before, you hardly know how to enable it and make it work well. But don’t worry; we are here to help you master VPN technology and protect your MacBook from prying eyes. Before we start delving into the explanations of VPN, we want you to build one important habit: enable VPN when using public WiFi and other networks whose safety is doubtful. We know that many students suffer from malware attacks. They forget to enable VPN when choosing a service to pay someone to write an essay: they just visit scammers and get their data stolen.

Well, there are two ways to connect to VPN on your MacBook: to use in-built VPN settings or download third-party software. We’ll cover both ways to make you an expert in this technology.

How To Manually Connect To VPN on MacBook

macOS comes with a built-in VPN client, supporting several widespread protocols, such as L2TP, IPSec, PPTP, and IKEv2. When you’re signed to a VPN server, the system administrator gives you all the necessary data to connect to it: server address, username, password, and VPN type. If you’re a newbie and don’t know what we are talking about, follow the steps below, and you’ll quickly set up the connection. Let’s imagine that you’ve already purchased the subscription and got the necessary data to connect to VPN. Here’s what you need to do next:

  1. Click on the Apple menu of your MacBook, then go to System Preferences and find the Network icon. Enter this section: all connection settings are located here.
  2. Then you’ll see the list of your connections on the left. Lower your gaze, and you’ll see the “+” icon. Press it to add a new connection.
  3. You’ll see three items: Interface, VPN Type, and Service Name. Click INterface and choose VPN from the dropdown menu. The VPN Type you need is L2TP over IPSec. If you don’t have a service name, enter any you like, this information can’t impact the connection.
  4. Click Create, and you’ll see another dialogue box with settings. Leave the Default configuration at that, and proceed with specifying Server Address, Account Name, Authentication Settings, and Password. Sometimes VPN servers use Shared Secrets and Certificates, but it’s not obligatory.
  5. Click Apply to enjoy a safe and secure connection.
  6. Return to the Network menu, choose your VPN in the list, and connect. Your VPN is enabled now.

Setting an L2TP connection is not the only way to set up a connection manually. Tunnelbrick and Viscosity are other options. Both are downloadable software and are easy to operate.

How to Establish A Connection Through Third-Party Software

Most VPN providers have dedicated software that makes the setting up process fast and easy. NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and other apps can do all the work for you. You can find the software in the App Store or on providers’ websites. Click the link to download the app you like, provide payment details, install the software and launch it to establish a connection. All you usually need to do is to choose a server and wait a few minutes till everything is set up. We need to warn you against using free VPN software: you’ll see a bunch of such apps when searching for a reliable VPN provider. Even though they claim to be safe and effective, people still face data leakage when using them.

Let’s not forget that web developers create apps to make money and, therefore, make users pay for subscriptions. But how does free software help developers earn money? We hope you understand the danger and will run a mile from it. By the way, a free VPN can slow WiFi connection speed, whereas reliable software does the opposite. Don’t forget to test the quality of connection if you have lags when enabling VPN — perhaps there’s something wrong with your WiFi.

The Bottom Line

We hope that the information here was helpful for all MacBook users who want to avoid data leakage and browse websites safely. The article covered all the most widespread ways to connect to VPN. If you have any questions, you may contact your VPN provider, and it will give you more detailed instructions.