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Windscribe Review 2023 — Keep This in Mind Before Buying

Author Image Ernest Sheptalo
Ernest Sheptalo Senior Writer

Windscribe claims to offer top-notch encryption and access to tons of streaming platforms at a super low price, but are these claims accurate? With so many VPNs on the market offering similar perks but at a higher cost, these features seemed too good to be true. I had to find out for myself how good it really is.

To see out how it performs, I thoroughly tested every aspect of the Windscribe app, including its security, speeds, and unblocking capabilities. I also looked into how well it works for torrenting and ran it through several leak tests. In addition, I did extensive tests on the free version and found out whether its 10GB data limit is enough for the average user.

Overall, I was impressed with many of Windscribe’s features, but it falls short in several key areas like speeds, gaming, privacy, and support. There are definitely other VPNs that offer better overall security and performance.

Short on Time? Here Are My Key Findings

Windscribe VPN Features — Updated in February 2023

💸 Price 0 USD/month
📆 Money Back Guarantee 3 Days
📝 Does VPN keep logs? No
🖥 Number of servers 170+
🛡 Kill switch Yes
🗺 Based in country Canada
🛠 Support Online chat/email
📥 Supports torrenting Yes

Streaming — Works with Every Major Streaming Platform

I was able to unblock Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, and BBC iPlayer for buffer-free streaming. It worked so well because Windscribe uses a proprietary spoofing technology (called Location Warp) that helps mask your IP, so you can access geo-restricted streaming platforms.

On top of that, I was impressed that I could unblock all of these platforms with the free version of Windscribe, which uses Location Warp too. Sign up with an email address, and you can get 10GB of data per month on your free account, and a tweet about Windscribe will get you 15GB. That will let you stream in HD for a little over 7 hours.

I tested Windscribe's streaming capabilities on my laptop, tablet, and Android Phone. Then, I tried it out on my Fire TV Stick using Windscribe's native app, and it worked great.

One minor issue is that compared to my base connection, videos took a little longer to load with Windscribe. However, the streaming quality never dropped below HD. I didn’t experience any buffering, whether I was using the free app or the paid version.

Unblocked Netflix

I was able to unblock US Netflix along with libraries from the UK, Canada, Japan, and Australia. The free app unblocked all these regions too, except for Japan which is only on the premium service. In my first test, I connected to the Atlanta server and opened Netflix. I selected an episode of Supernatural, and the entire episode played back in HD without any buffering.

Screenshot of Netflix Player streaming Supernatural while connected to Windscribe Every show I watched on Netflix loaded instantly too

I also got similar results using the Dallas server. The only difference was that the video took 2 seconds longer to load, which is still an impressive result.

Unblocked Hulu

I was able to access Hulu using the Los Angeles server.

Screenshot of Hulu player streaming The Wonder Years while connected to WindscribeThe shows I watched never paused to buffer either

This let me watch The Wonder Years, one of my favorite shows, in sharp HD. I was impressed that it played back without any dips in quality.

Unblocked Disney+

All 5 US servers I used managed to unblock Disney+. While connected to Atlanta, Dallas, Denver, Chicago, and New York servers, I could easily access all my favorite movies.

A picture showing how Windscribe successfully unblocks Disney+.I finished watching an entire movie without any dips in picture quality

It took 2 seconds to load the page and 5 seconds to load each video. However, the movies never stopped to buffer once they started playing.

Unblocked Amazon Prime Video

I was able to watch Amazon Prime Video, although it didn't work on the first try. The videos didn’t load on my initial attempt. However, I simply reloaded the page, and I was able to instantly start playing movies and shows.

Screenshot of Amazon Prime Video player streaming Evangelion while connected to WindscribeThe US region has the most content, and I used it to watch Evangelion

The quality never dropped below HD, and it didn’t stop to buffer.

Unblocked HBO Max

It was easy to load up HBO Max. I usually have issues unblocking this platform, but it worked immediately using Windscribe’s Atlanta server.

A picture showing how Windscribe successfully unblocks HBO MaxAll the videos I opened, loaded in high quality

It took the video 3 seconds to load, but then it played without buffering. It worked just as well on the Denver server but videos took a bit longer to start up (around 5 seconds on average).

Unblocked BBC iPlayer

It was easy to access BBC iPlayer with Windscribe. I was impressed that all the videos loaded immediately with the highest quality already selected.

A picture showing how Windscribe successfully unblocks BBC iPlayerEvery video I watched played back without any interruptions

The quality of the picture remained consistent even though I was downloading a few large files in the background.

Also Unblocked: ITV, All 4, YouTube, Spotify, and DAZN

The UK server even managed to unblock All 4. Most VPNs focus their attention on US streaming platforms as these are more popular. This makes it hard to find a service that works with UK platforms, but Windscribe’s UK server worked great.

A picture showing how Windscribe successfully unblocks All 4I was able to enjoy all my favorite shows in the best quality

Windscribe managed to unblock every platform I tried it with. This is impressive since it has a relatively small server network compared to other providers like CyberGhost or ExpressVPN. The servers it does have are super reliable for getting past geo-blocks.

Speeds — Fast Local Connections, but Slow Long-Distance Ones

Windscribe has great speeds on local servers, but it slows down at long distances. Usually, the farther you are from a server, the slower your speeds will be since the data you are requesting takes longer to reach you. However, the drops in speed are much larger than normal with Windscribe. These tests were performed with the premium app; on the free version, I didn't notice any difference in speeds. Every test was recorded on a Windows 10 laptop using the IKEv2 protocol.

Short-distance server speeds are impressive. First, I tested its Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Moldova locations. Best Location is a convenient feature that connects the VPN to the server closest to you, which was Poland in my case. These servers are all less than 300km away from my location and each one gave me similar results. All together, I got an average speed of 62.10 Mbps, which is more than enough to stream 4K content. My average download rate without a VPN is 70.80 Mbps, so the VPN only dropped my speeds by a small amount.

A picture showing Windscribe good long-distance server speeds test results.I could perform any online activity comfortably with these speeds

However, long-distance download rates dropped by 80%, and upload rates fell by 72%. I used its Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, and Singapore locations for my long-distance speed tests. All of these locations are more than 2500 km away from me. On average, I recorded speeds of 12.46 Mbps. This isn't fast, but it’s suitable for streaming since you only need 5 Mbps to stream in HD. There are several other premium VPNs that give you faster speeds, especially at long distances.

Screenshot of Ookla speed tests recorded while connected to WindscribeAlthough some of the long-distance servers had alright speeds, some were unusable

I wondered what the speed difference would be between different protocols, so I tested them using the Singapore location.

Screenshot of a chart showing different speed results using different protocols in WindscribeWSTunnel never worked and repeatedly prompted an error screen

IKEv2 is the fastest and most reliable protocol. OpenVPN (TCP) was 10X slower than IKEv2, and Stealth wasn't much better. OpenVPN (UDP) was only 42% slower than IKEv2, but I still recommend IKEv2 or Wireguard when you do any activities that require fast speeds.

Are Windscribe’s Speeds Fast Enough for Gaming? Yes, but Not for Cloud Gaming

Windscribe is suitable for PC and consoles, but it’s not a good option for cloud gaming (playing games that you stream rather than download). To start my test, I set up Windscribe on my router and booted up Super Smash Bros Ultimate on a Nintendo Switch. It took me 2 minutes to find a match, and I didn’t notice any lag. During my gaming session, the ping remained low (the higher the ping, the longer your button presses will take to register by the game), and I was never disconnected.

However, when I tried it with GeForce Now using a US server, it took about 4 minutes to load. I tried again using a UK one, and it worked. However, the experience wasn’t good as there was a lot of pixelation, lag, and I was even disconnected a few times.

A picture showing a pixelated image of a game running on GeForce Now through WindscribeI also noticed that input latency was 3X higher for me than it is without a VPN connected

I also tried Google Stadia and xCloud, but Windscribe failed to unblock them. You won’t be able to stream games using Windscribe. To experience cloud-gaming safely, you’ll need to use one of the top VPNs for gamers.

Server Network — Small Network With Good Coverage

Windscribe has a decent size server network with some unique countries. It offers 170 servers in 69 countries with the premium app. There are VPNs with much larger server networks. For example, IPVanish has 2,000 servers, and it owns all its servers. Windscribe uses rented servers, which isn't uncommon, but when a company owns its servers, it can offer the best security because it doesn't have to rely on third-parties. However, Windscribe does let you access several countries many VPNs neglect, like Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Turkey.

The free service lets you use the Hong Kong location too, along with servers in the US and 8 European countries. Overall, Western Europe and North America have the most coverage.

Navigating the server list is easy. After you’ve opened the server list, select the country you wish to connect to, and hit the “+” icon. This will reveal a list of cities (all accompanied with funny names) you can connect to, along with the option to bookmark a location. Plus, you can always check the Windscribe website for updates that will tell you if any servers are down.

Screenshots of server lists on Windscribe's desktop and Android AppsClick the plus symbol to see each city in your selected country

With the expanded list, you’ll also be able to see the latency rate (in ms). This is useful for when you're gaming, but I would have preferred if it included a load percentage too. The load lets you know how many people are on a server, so you can find one that’s less crowded. When less people are on a server, it's usually faster.

You can also purchase static IP addresses, which is helpful if you need a consistent, encrypted IP to operate a website. You can choose between 10 data center IPs in 6 countries for an additional $2/month. Residential IPs are offered in Chicago, Dallas, and Toronto for an added $8/month. Windscribe's website claims these can also help you access streaming sites. However, I was able to unblock every streaming platform I tried with its normal servers. So, if you need a static IP, stick with the data centers and save some money.

Security — Top-Notch Features to Protect Your Data

Windscribe provides you with military-grade security that keeps you safe online. It offers AES 256-bit encryption which makes your data virtually unreadable. This is further enhanced by a SHA512 algorithm, and a 4096-bit RSA key. This turns your information into a random set of characters that only your device can read correctly. On top of that, Perfect Forward Secrecy creates a new encryption key each time you log in. So, even if a key was ever cracked, a new one would be generated immediately at the start of your next session.

Split tunneling lets you choose which apps or websites move through the VPN tunnel. I tested this by running my Netflix app through a Japanese server. This let me stay updated on local news while I streamed Death Note.

It also comes with a dedicated kill switch (called Firewall). This feature will disable the network when your VPN connection drops, so you don’t leak any data. I know it works because anytime I switched servers I could see that my connection was blocked. You can enable it in the app simply by toggling the white switch near the connect button. There are three modes you can select, Automatic, Manual, and always ON. However, be aware this isn't available for Android phones.

There’s also a whitelisting feature that will automatically activate the VPN connection when you log in to an unsecured network. This is a lifesaver for someone like me, as I often forget to turn on a VPN when using public networks. I used this feature to set up my home network as “secured” and all others as “unsecured.” That way, my device is protected every time I use a public Wi-Fi network. You can access your home network remotely with port forwarding, but only if you pay extra for a static IP.

Other Security Features

The R.O.B.E.R.T. feature is a strong customizable ad-blocker. This is a dedicated domain and IP-blocking system you can use to blacklist IPs, ads, tracking, and crypto miners, which can also help you save internet data. One unique feature is that it lets you toggle a variety of IPs to block, like porn, gambling, and social media sites. When I tested it, it worked great at blocking sites and most ads, but YouTube advertisements still come through. However, the set-up needs to be done through your account page on the website. Most VPNs lets you change the ad-blocker settings in the app, so this is an annoying added step. The system is also capable of malware blocking, phishing detection, and location spoofing. R.O.B.E.R.T. is available to both paying and free users, but the free version only offers the malware blocking.

There’s a botnet attack prevention feature — a botnet invasion is a curated attack of several computers that have access to your device through malware or a phishing website. It’ll automatically block these threats, so you won’t have to worry about network-related invasions.

Another handy feature is Secure Hotspot which you can use to make your computer work as a protected router. This could be useful, but unfortunately, I wasn’t able to use it. I tried this feature on 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi networks, restarted my device, and even tried to connect via Ethernet port, but it didn’t work.

The Double Hop tool will route your traffic through an extra server. This will make your traffic more secure and untraceable for hackers, trackers, and malware. To activate this feature, you first need to install both the desktop app and the browser extension. Then, simply connect to a server on the desktop app and connect to the same way on the browser extension.

A picture showing the difference in speeds when Windscribe's Double Hop feature is enabledThe latency doubled, and I lost a lot of speed

Since Double Hop reroutes your traffic, I expected a drop in speeds. I wanted to see how severe the reduction is, so I connected to the Romania server and did a speed test which gave me 18.50 Mbps. I then connected the browser extension to the US and redid the speed test again, resulting in 9.65 Mbps, roughly a 52% reduction. Unless you need an extra security layer, I do not recommend using this feature since you lose so much speed.

Location Warp will make it look like you’re in a specified location. In most cases, a VPN will give you the necessary IP address so you can access geo-restricted content. However, some websites might check your physical location through the GPS module on your device or through your Wi-Fi SSID. This feature helps prevent such issues by giving the website you are visiting fake GPS coordinates.

Time Warp is another feature that’ll help you keep your device anonymous. Some sites can detect that you are using a VPN by looking at your time zone. This feature will prevent that by showing the website you’re on a matching time figure.

It also has DNS/IPv6 leak protection, which allowed it to pass all my leak tests. Many VPNs leak data through your browser (a.k.a WebRTC), so I was glad to see that Windscribe kept my data hidden from the websites I visited.

A screenshot showing how Windscribe managed to pass an IP leak test successfullyI’m actually 8,787 km away from the US

There are also multiple protocols to choose from, so you can customize your security level. Windscribe supports every major security protocol, including IKEv2, OpenVPN (TCP and UDP), WireGuard, WSTunnel, and its own Stealth option. Overall, I recommend using WireGuard as it offers the best balance of speed and security.

Is It Safe to Combine Windscribe With Tor? Yes!

You can use Windscribe over Tor for maximum security. Tor, also known as The Onion Router, is a special browser that was designed to offer complete anonymity. It is more secure than a traditional browser which makes it useful in highly restrictive countries.

You can combine Windscribe with Tor to add another layer of security and mask your activities from the ISP. And if there’s something wrong with Tor, Windscribe’s IP will be exposed, not yours. However, Tor is notorious for cutting speed so I decided to test this.

Screenshot of ookla speed tests done with the Tor browser by itself and while connected to WindscribeI had to deal with long load times when I used Windscribe with Tor

It's possible to use Windscribe with Tor, but you'll have to deal with a very slow connection.

Privacy — A Great No-Logs Policy, but There Are Problems

Windscribe has faced a few issues when it comes to privacy, but its been proven it does not reveal any information about you. It follows a strict no-logs policy and does not store any of its customer’s data. Your IP address, the sites you’ve visited, and timestamps for your VPN sessions won’t be collected either. You can be sure that your information will stay safe.

Windscribe offers transparency reports which verify its policy. There’s a graph you can use on its website to track how many times the company’s received DMCA or law enforcement data requests. It also tells you whether Windscribe fulfilled any of these requests. After reading through them, I found out that Windscribe has never complied with any of them because no relevant data is ever stored. This proves the company sticks to its no-logs policy.

Windscribe only stores anonymous data that's necessary for maintaining the VPN and upholding its rules. The only things you need to create an account are a username and a password.

Screenshot of Windscribe's Privacy Policy highlighting where it states what it stores and what it does notIt only stores what it needs to maintain the free tier's limitations

While you're in a session, the server's memory will have your OPENVPN/IKEv2 username, when you connected, and how much data you transferred. All of this is deleted as soon as you log off.

You don’t even have to give Windscribe an email or any other type of contact information if you don’t want to. This is pretty rare and makes its free option one of the safest around. Windscribe even allows you to pay with Bitcoin to maximize your anonymity on the premium tier.

However, you should be aware that the company is based in Canada, a member of the 14 Eyes Alliance. This is an agreement between Canada, the US, the UK, New Zealand, and 10 other countries to share data on their citizens. While they don't have any information about you to share, it is still a bit concerning. In addition, Windscribe has never had a third-party come in and verify its policy, like so many of its competitors have (Proton VPN, for example). The evidence shows that it sticks to its policy, but an independent audit (which it has promised to do in the future) would provide more peace of mind.

My biggest privacy concern is the fact that Windscribe servers were seized by Ukrainian officials in June of 2021. Even worse, the servers were not encrypted. So, the Ukrainian government was able to find a key that would make it possible for them to create fake Windscribe servers. On its blog, the VPN company stated it thinks this is highly unlikely but not impossible. Luckily, there was no identifiable information on the server that could put customers at risk.

Screenshot of a Windscribe blogpost where it states no customer data was captured by the Ukrainian governmentAfter the seizures, Windscribe increased its staff by 50% to improve its security

An incident like this means there are other VPNs I'd trust more with my data. However, I was impressed with how honest Windscribe was in reporting this to their customers. It's making drastic changes to the VPN to ensure this doesn't happen in the future. For example, it plans to convert all of its servers to in-memory servers in the future, which would delete all of their info after every reboot.

Torrenting — Great Speeds for P2P File Transfers

Windscribe speeds are fast enough for large torrents. It allows you to torrent on most servers, excluding India, Lithuania, Russia, and South Africa. Servers that don't allow torrenting are indicated with a small red flag in the app and are also listed on the website. There are no data caps and download speeds are quick. I downloaded Charlie Chaplin in Mabel's Strange Predicament (160MB) using its UK server.

Screenshot of uTorrent app downloading Charlie Chaplin in Mabel's Strange Predicament while connected to WindscribeDuring my download, the speed reached a maximum of 4.6Mb/s

Windscribe also works with popular torrent clients such as uTorrent, Deluge, qBittorrent, and VUZE. I tested all of them and didn’t notice any differences in speeds. You can also use its SOCKS5 proxy to get better speeds, but I recommend sticking to the VPN since it provides full encryption for your device. Lastly, port forwarding may help you download faster, but you need to pay extra for a static IP to use it.

Does Windscribe Work in China? Yes

Windscribe can bypass the Great Firewall of China. I confirmed this with its chatbot, which also said it works in other restrictive countries like Turkey and Saudi Arabia. The Great Firewall is a strict system of censorship that blocks internet users in China from accessing popular websites and apps such as Google, Instagram, YouTube, Netflix, Wikipedia, and many more.

Windscribe uses a Stealth connection protocol that is designed to work in restrictive environments like China. The protocol masks your OpenVPN traffic by hiding it inside a secure tunnel (called TLS) that makes it look like regular traffic. This can even be done with the free service, making it one of the only free options for people who need a VPN in China. Unfortunately, this feature isn't offered on iOS, but its website stated it should be available on Apple phones in the future.

You can also use WSTunnel to use the VPN in China, but this protocol never worked for me. It's nice that the VPN offers 2 ways to help the VPN work in China. I just hope this protocol's performance issues are improved because I couldn't get it to connect during my tests.

It's best to download the VPN before entering China since it will be difficult to access it once you're there. China tends to regulate VPN use by blocking the technology, not by penalizing users -- I couldn't find any instances where a tourist was targeted for using a non-government approved VPN there. However, keep in mind that non-government-approved VPNs are illegal in China. I suggest that you read up on the most recent laws and regulations in China to avoid getting penalized.

Simultaneous Device Connections — Unlimited

For both the free and paid versions, you can connect as many devices as you want. I connected my laptop, 2 smartphones, and my Fire TV Stick to the same location and started streaming on all of them. Speeds remained the same, and each time I added a new device, I was still able to stream without buffering. Many VPNs only let you connect around 5 devices and free services usually let you use one max. So, this is a strong feature that almost no other free service can match.

Installation & Apps


Using Windscribe is super easy. Simply click on a location from the server list, and it will automatically connect you to it. There’s also a smart location feature at the very top of the server list. Pressing it will connect you to the fastest server.

You can also type the country name in the search bar to narrow down your searches. I used this feature to quickly find servers and “favorite” them for quick access.

Screenshot of general and connection settings windows in the Windscribe Windows appWindscribe's settings are divided into 5 intuitive categories, making it simple to find what you need

The entire options menu is divided into the following 5 categories:

  • General — This section allow you to configure the app. You can set it to launch on startup, auto-connect, and minimize to tray. There’s also an option to turn off notifications and country flags. This is also where you can change the language of the app (with 25 available) and sort the server list. One standout option is called Docked, which allows you to snap the app to the taskbar.
  • Account — Here you can view your username, email, and the plan you are using (along with the expiration date). There’s even a button that will take you to Windscribe’s website, where you can edit your account info.
  • Connection — You can use this to configure your VPN app. This is where you can set up split tunneling, network whitelisting, proxy settings, and even select when the firewall should activate (before or after connection). Moreover, you can choose a connection mode, packet size, and whether LAN traffic should be allowed. There’s also a MAC spoofing toggle and Kill TCP sockets option (which is on by default) you can use if you have trouble connecting to Windscribe.
  • Share — This is where you'll find features that allow you to connect devices that don’t support native apps. The Secure Hotspot feature and the Proxy Gateway function let you use Windscribe on your console, TV, and other devices.
  • Debug — In this section, you'll see the advanced features. Most toggles are designed to help developers troubleshoot, but even still, you can set an internal DNS (OpenDNS, Cloudflare, Google, or OS default) if your device fails to connect.

The last three icons are Help, Sign Out, and Quit. The Help tab will open your browser and boot Windscribe’s help section.

Windscribe also allows you to import OpenVPN configuration files. This is an excellent feature if you use multiple free/paid VPNs as you can import the server configurations to Windscribe and make it work as a single front-end. Using this feature, you won’t need to bother with different user interfaces.

Device Compatibility — Works on All Popular Operating Systems

Windscribe apps can be installed on every major operating system. On desktops, you can install it on devices running Windows, Mac, and Linux. The Windows and Mac apps are nearly identical, except the Mac version is missing the Always On option. It works for Linux users on Fedora, Ubuntu, Debian, CentOS, and more. This is a command-line only app, so you'll have to do everything with text.

Screenshot of Windscribe's Windows and Android apps Apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android are nearly identical, so they're easy to switch between

For phones, it's available on iOS and Android. The iOS and Android apps are almost identical to the desktop versions. Both apps have the same user interface and share a similar menu structure. In terms of security features, there’s support for IKEv2, WireGuard, and OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), network whitelisting, shortcuts for voice assistants, and split tunneling. There’s even a design feature that lets you pick a custom color scheme for the entire app.

The only difference is that the mobile apps can't change languages or access the WSTunnel protocol and proxy settings. The stealth feature isn't available for iOS (but it is on Android). In addition, secure hotspot is only on the iOS version and not available for Android.

It also has browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera, which have a lot of features many other extensions don't. You can use all of the same servers you use on the other apps (many extensions have a restricted server list). Plus it offers most of the same security features available on desktop apps, including R.O.B.E.R.T. So, you'll be able to block ads, cookies, WebRTC requests, and notifications. You can also alter your location, time zone, and even your user agent (which hides what OS and browser you're on).

However, split tunneling and the kill switch are missing from browser extensions. Most importantly, keep in mind that the extension does not give you full protection. It is a proxy, so it's only protecting your browser, not your entire device and it doesn't encrypt your traffic. You should always use it in conjunction with a VPN for maximum security.

Windscribe can also be installed on routers which can help you easily protect all your tech and encrypt traffic on devices without native apps, like your PlayStation 5, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch. It offers router installation guides on its website for DDWRT, Tomato, and Asus routers. It even sells Invizbox, its own pre-configured routers. Its proxy gateway service isn't quite the same as SmartDNS, but I was able to use it to switch locations on my PlayStation 5.

Windscribe has another service named ControlID that has real SmartDNS functionality. It's unfortunate that you need to pay for an entirely different service to access SmartDNS since so many top VPNs include it with a normal subscription.

Windscribe has a native app for Amazon Fire TV and Nvidia Shield, but it's not the best option for most smart TVs. Like most apps for smart TVs, it's a little less attractive and doesn't offer as many features. It defaults to the OpenVPN UDP protocol, and you can switch to OpenVPN TCP, Stealth, or Wireguard. There is an option to send local logs to Windscribe, but I advise against this to maintain your privacy. However, it does offer split tunneling (named split router), which lets you pick which apps on your TV move through the tunnel. This is pretty rare for a VPN app on TVs. It's decent overall, but it doesn't compete with the best VPNs for smart TVs.

Set-Up & Installation — Straightforward

Windscribe’s installation process is simple and straightforward. You can install the desktop app or browser extension in seconds. Each version of the app is just as easy to set up as it is on Windows. I quickly installed Windscribe on my Android phone, iPad, Windows 10 laptop, and even on an old Linux workstation.

Here's a step-by-step guide for installing Windscribe on Windows: 

Quick Guide: How to Set Up Windscribe on Windows

  1. Download the app. After you've chosen a subscription tier, download the Windows app from the Windscribe website.
  2. Install Windscribe. Double click on the .exe file to begin the installation.
  3. Connect to the VPN.  You're ready to use the app. Just press the power button in the upper-right corner to connect to a server.


Build A Plan
$ 0 / month per month
Yearly Plan
$ 5.75 / month per month
Monthly Plan
$ 9 / month per month

Windscribe offers several affordable packages. There are two types of paid packages – monthly and yearly. The monthly one is $9/month, which is on the pricier side, but you can save a lot if you sign up for a yearly plan. It will cost you $4.08/month.

However, there’s also a unique “build a plan” option, which lets you select what servers you’d like to use. One server costs just $1, and for an additional dollar, you can include the R.O.B.E.R.T. feature and unlimited bandwidth. Other add-ons include static IPs and team-based accounts, which cost $3 per person.

There are no free trials, but there is a free plan. Unfortunately, Windscribe no longer offers free premium trials. However, there is a free plan that comes with 2GB of data. There’s also an option to add 8GB more if you provide an email, and tweeting about Windscribe gets you 15GB.

You can purchase Windscribe with Visa, Mastercard, Paypal, American Express, and Payment Wall. There’s even an option to buy it with Bitcoin, so you don’t have to reveal any of your personal information.

As for refunds, Windscribe’s policy is pretty restrictive compared to many of its competitors. When you buy the service, you only have 3 days to request a refund. On top of that, you will only receive a refund if you have used less than 10GB of data. Plus, its policy states it may take up to 30 days to process. So, I'd recommend testing out the free version before buying, since this isn't a refund policy you can rely on. This is really lacking compared to a VPN like CyberGhost that gives you a 24-hour free trial and a 45-day money-back guarantee. Plus, it's about half the price of Windscribe with a 2-year plan.

Reliability & Support


Windscribe's chatbot isn't great, but the email support system is decent. The company’s chatbot, Garry, can answer basic questions. When the questions are too complicated, the answers become confusing. It's not a reliable way to troubleshoot your issues, which is frustrating since many premium VPNs offer 24/7 live support with real humans and cost less than Windscribe.

Screenshot of chat screen with Windscribe's chatbot supportYou can even get multiple answers to the same questions that aren't helpful

The email support team is friendly and helpful, but replies may take 24 hours. The chat screen will ask you if you want to speak with a human. Here, you can fill out a ticket with your query, and this method worked well for me. For example, I asked them to help me unblock ITV. In about 1 day, the support agent provided a list of steps to disable ad blocking settings for the R.O.B.E.R.T. feature, which solved my problem. One positive is that it doesn't outsource its support, so your email answers come from real team members, rather than support staff reading from a script.

The website also provides some helpful resources like FAQs, setup guides, and a searchable knowledge base. Windscribe also has an entire subReddit where you can communicate with other users. You'll likely be able to find answers to your questions by searching through these, but having a live chat would save you lot of time.

Compare Windscribe VPN With The Top Alternative VPNs

The Bottom Line

Final Verdict — Great for Streaming, but It Has Some Flaws

Windscribe is a decent choice, although it’s a little slow, and there are some issues with privacy and customer support. It offers a wide range of security features, plenty of servers to choose from, a strong free option, and consistent unblocking abilities. I was also impressed with its short-distance speeds and ability to torrent on most servers. It also works in restrictive countries such as China, which is rare.

Unfortunately, it does have its downsides. Long-distance servers provide poor speeds, and I was never able to stream games, even with nearby servers. Plus it's worrying that it's had servers seized in Ukraine and its customer support system is lacking.

Overall, it's a great option for streaming, but it can't really compete against other top VPNs in most other areas. ExpressVPN is just as good for streaming, has world-class security and privacy features, works in China, and has 24/7 live chat support — even though it's slightly more expensive, I would honestly recommend it instead.

  • Large server network
  • Reliably unblocks Netflix, Disney+, and other popular streaming platforms
  • Unlimited simultaneous device connections
  • Robust security paired with a strict no-logs policy
  • Smart location
  • Accessible app
  • Works in China
  • P2P-friendly

FAQs on Windscribe

Is Windscribe safe?

Yes, Windscribe uses military-grade encryption, advanced security features, and a strict no-logs policy. Your data is encrypted with a robust algorithm that is impossible to crack even with modern technology. There’s also a leak protection system that will make sure you don’t reveal your sensitive information.

Can Windscribe unblock Netflix?

Windscribe can reliably unblock Netflix. Using its Japanese, US, and UK servers, I could easily access Netflix with these countries’ respective libraries. Other popular streaming platforms worked too. You’ll have no trouble unblocking all your favorite shows.

Will Windscribe slow my speeds down?

Yes, Windscribe will reduce your base speed. During testing, Windscribe cut roughly 52% of my speed on long-distance servers, and 20% on short-distance locations. This is normal as your data has to pass through another server and a layer of encryption.

How can I cancel a paid Windscribe subscription?

You can cancel Windscribe using the Account menu. Simply head over to the Windscribe website, locate the “Claim Voucher” menu, and hit the “Cancel Subscription” button. You can also use the app to access the “Cancel Subscription” menu.

Can I delete my Windscribe account?

Yes, you can delete your account inside the Account menu. Head over to your Windscribe account using a browser or through the app. Find the “member since” line where you’ll find a button to remove the account underneath the date you’ve registered. Click on it and follow the on-screen instructions to delete your account.

Can I use Windscribe for the Dark Web?

Yes, you can use Windscribe for Tor, but I don’t recommend it on the free version. The free version of the app doesn’t have access to all of the security features found in the paid version. You should access the Dark Web with all the security features enabled to avoid accidentally leaking your info.

Money Back Guarantee (Days): 3
Mobile app:
Number of devices per license: Unlimited

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Windscribe VPN User Reviews (User reviews are not verified)
Based on 286 reviews in 15 languages
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Buyer Beware

They just went ahead and charged my CC without prior notice. I haven't even used this service in over a year. I asked for a refund for a service that I am not even using and they refused. Now I am dealing with a credit card dispute. Worse customer service. Buyer Beware and if you use this service keep an eye on your credit card.

Siran Sawyer
Siran Sawyer
Expensive, not worth your time, and at all times avoid this company

I subscribed to Windscribe VPN's 'free' service, which is a paltry 10mg - and used that tiny amount of bytes in about a day and a half. Things were going well with their service, so I purchased the PRO plan at an unknowably non-refundable $69 USD. I thought I had researched the various VPNs better than I obviously had - THREE business days or 10mg of paid service is their time frame/use for refunds. I had read everywhere I researched that they allowed 30 days (like who doesn't give this length of time?) as the refund time. For me, Windscribe just stopped working - NO internet, etc. On what happened to be the THIRD business day, I had used 25.15GB. If you search deeply on Windscribe's website - scroll to the absolute bottom of the main page, under 'COMPANY' is a link for 'Terms' or "Terms of Use - Updated: December 3, 2021 - Bunch of boring stuff you won't read but probably should, at least the cliff notes on the right." On that page, scroll quite a ways down under 'Refunds', and you will see: "You have the right to obtain a full reimbursement, .. given that your request is sent within 3 commercial days from the subscription payment. The right to be refunded is invalid .. if you send the request after having used the Service for more than 3 days and/or if you have used the Service .. exceeding 10 GB." There are MANY other VPNs that will do a much better job for your needs - AVOID WindscribeVPN at all times.

Used Windscribe for years!

I've used Windscribe for years... like 5ish. I have an unlimited pro forever plan I purchased after having a sub for a few months but after I paid somewhere like 80 or 120 bucks or whatever I have it forever now. I've had some issues with slow speeds but really, overall, it's been an amazing VPN. I've used it for all... legal... purposes of course and in all that time I've never got a letter from my ISP asking me to stop doing anything I was doing which was all legal of course like I said before. I love Windscribe. I have it on a DD-WRT router and on all my computers and phones. I don't use it 100% of the time but I use it quite a lot. Would recommend 100% to anyone and everyone! If they ever sell a lifetime pro account again buy it but I'm sure they won't.

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