How to Set Up VPN Connections in Windows

A virtual private network connects two private networks over the internet

VPN, Personal Online Security, Virtual Private Network


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Configuring a VPN in Windows 10 is easy with Microsoft VPN, the built-in VPN client in the operating system. Once configured, your computer will be a VPN client that can connect to a remote VPN server.

Before you start, you'll need the hostname and/or IP address for the VPN server you want to connect to. Some VPN services can provide you with a specific IP address for VPN servers, but if you're in need of accessing a work VPN or another specific server, ask your company network administrator for the VPN connection information.

Microsoft VPN uses the PPTP, L2TP, and SSTP network protocols. There are many other VPN clients you can install on the computer that works similarly to connect you to the internet through a VPN.

Instructions in this article applies to Windows 10.

Configure a VPN Connection in Windows

  1. Select Start > Settings (cogwheel).

    Settings icon in Windows 10 Start Menu
  2. Select Network & Internet.

    Network & Internet in Windows 10 Settings
  3. Select VPN on the left side.

    VPN tab in Windows 10 Settings
  4. Select Add a VPN connection.

    Add a VPN connection button in Windows 10 Settings
  5. In the VPN provider field, select the dropdown and select Windows (built-in).

    Windows (built-in) in VPN Provider field
  6. In Connection name, create a meaningful name for your VPN connection. (In this example, PIA-East Coast)

  7. The Server name or address will be provided by the VPN service you use. (Example,

  8. The VPN type will also be provided by your VPN service provider.

  9. The Type of sign-in info will also be provided by your VPN service provider.

  10. Depending on what type of sign-info you use will determine if you fill out User name and Password, both of which are optional.

    Connection options in Windows VPN
  11. Select Save.

    Save button for VPN connections in Windows 10
  12. Now you should see the new VPN connection under VPN settings.

    New VPN connection in Windows 10 Settings

Do disconnect from the VPN in Windows XP, return to the Network Connections window, right-click the VPN connection, and select Disconnect.