DD-WRT is a popular Linux-based firmware that can help you connect a VPN to a wide range of routers. In most cases, you’ll have to install DD-WRT manually, which can be complicated. Thankfully, now you can get routers that come pre-installed with DD-WRT, making the entire process a breeze. What might be tricky, though, is finding the best DD-WRT VPN.
- Pairing a VPN with your DD-WRT router can help you simultaneously protect as many devices as you like.
- ExpressVPN is the best VPN for DD-WRT routers thanks to its compatibility with the router, excellent features and first-rate all-around performance.
- NordVPN’s fast speeds make it an excellent alternative, especially for gaming.
- Surfshark is a budget-friendly DD-WRT router option, while CyberGhost is best for people new to VPNs. VyprVPN also makes this list because of its lineup of security features.
We examined and tested several DD-WRT VPNs, and in this article, we’ll show you the ones that came out on top. If you want a head start, ExpressVPN, the overall best VPN, is the best VPN provider for DD-WRT routers because it supports DD-WRT routers and has fast speeds and best-in-class security features.
You can connect your VPN to a router to protect as many devices as you want. These days, many routers come prepackaged for VPN installation. Some even have built-in VPNs like ExpressVPN’s Aircove.
DD-WRT supports OpenVPN protocol and is available on a wide range of routers. Be sure to check if the router you’re using is compatible with DD-WRT before trying to flash it.
Windscribe is the best free VPN for DD-WRT routers because it supports DD-WRT routers and has fast speeds and customizable plans. Also, the VPN offers up to 15GB free each month.
The Top VPNs for DD-WRT
Average speedDownload Speed91 MbpsUpload Speed9 MbpsLatency4 ms
- : PayPal, Credit card, Bitcoin, PaymentWall
- : 5
Average speedDownload Speed92 MbpsUpload Speed9 MbpsLatency22 ms
- : PayPal, Credit card, Google Pay, AmazonPay, ACH Transfer, Cash
- : 6
Average speedDownload Speed95 MbpsUpload Speed8 MbpsLatency124 ms
- : PayPal, Credit card
- : Unlimited
Average speedDownload Speed69 MbpsUpload Speed9 MbpsLatency38 ms
- : PayPal, Credit card, bitcoin
- : 7
- : PayPal, Credit card
- : 30
What Makes the Best DD-WRT VPN?
To create this list, we looked for VPN providers with support for DD-WRT firmware, easy-to-follow DD-WRT VPN setup guides, fast connection speeds and a trove of solid security features. Below is a snapshot of the VPNs that made the cut.
- ExpressVPN — Overall best DD-WRT router VPN with top-notch streaming performance
- NordVPN — Lightning-fast DD-WRT router VPN that’s excellent for gaming
- Surfshark — Pocket-friendly VPN for DD-WRT routers
- CyberGhost — Beginner-friendly VPN for DD-WRT routers
- VyprVPN — Wild card DD-WRT VPN with useful security features
If your router isn’t preconfigured with DD-WRT, you’ll need to install it manually. The process can be daunting, especially if you’re not tech savvy. That’s why you need a VPN with a straightforward DD-WRT installation tutorial and responsive support to help you.
As you’ll read in our how to set up a VPN on a router guide, your router is likely to suffer some speed losses when you pair it with a VPN. This means you might experience some lag and buffering wheels, particularly with activities like gaming, streaming and downloading large files. As a result, you need a VPN with fast download and upload speeds as well as low latency.
Furthermore, the best DD-WRT VPN client should have a collection of robust security and privacy features. That way, you can enjoy top-notch protection on all devices connected to the DD-WRT router. VPN features like a no-logs policy, AES-256 encryption and a kill switch are standard fare, but other features like a dedicated IP and double VPN are handy extras.
The 5 Best VPNs for DD-WRT Routers
Now that we know what makes the best VPN for DD-WRT routers, let’s pick apart each of our VPN choices to discover why they made the list. We’ll start with our winner, ExpressVPN.
More details about ExpressVPN:
- Pricing: $6.66 per month (15-months plan)
- Provider website: expressvpn.com
- DD-WRT setup guides
- Fast speeds
- Unblocks most streaming apps
When it comes to VPNs for routers, ExpressVPN is the favorite, hands down. It’s the best VPN for Asus routers, the best VPN for Linksys routers, the best VPN for Netgear routers and the best overall VPN for routers. Unsurprisingly, it claims the first spot on this list too, for a number of reasons. It boasts fast speeds, many security features and easily unblocks all the major streaming services.
What’s more, ExpressVPN has a comprehensive tutorial guide on its website on how to set up the VPN on your DD-WRT router through the OpenVPN protocol. The guide is straightforward and contains annotated screenshots. If you’re struggling to follow the instructions, you can switch to the video tutorial, which is even easier to follow.
Best-in-Class Streaming Performance
If you intend to pair your VPN with a DD-WRT router to stream videos, ExpressVPN is your best bet. It easily gets into geo-restricted streaming platforms, including Hulu, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Disney+ and even the usually hard-to-crack Netflix. It’s also super fast, so you should be able to stream HD movies without breaking a sweat. Learn more about this VPN provider in our full ExpressVPN review.
ExpressVPN’s monthly plan costs $12.95, which is higher than the other VPNs on this list. The yearly plan is heavily discounted, at $6.66 per month, but it’s still steep. If you want a VPN for the short term, ExpressVPN’s rare six-month plan ($9.99 per month) is worth a shot. You can try out any of the plans using the VPN’s 30-day money-back guarantee.
More details about NordVPN:
- Pricing: $3.29 per month (two-year plan)
- Provider website: nordvpn.com
- DD-WRT setup guide
- Super fast
- Excellent security features
- No DD-WRT VPN router video tutorials
Next on the list is NordVPN, an excellent all-around VPN that always gives ExpressVPN a run for its money. On its website, NordVPN has an exhaustive setup guide that walks users through all the nitty-gritty of setting up the VPN on DD-WRT routers.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t have a video tutorial. However, there are responsive support agents available if you face any challenges.
NordVPN is also a security and privacy titan, making it a great choice if you’re concerned about traffic leaks or cyberattacks. For example, its threat protection feature blocks ads and malware, and scans files you download for malware. Plus, it’s the fastest VPN on the market, and its connection is consistently fast, even across long distances.
NordVPN’s Specialty Servers
One of NordVPN’s biggest selling points is its specialty servers, such as obfuscated servers, which can help you access the internet in countries where VPNs are banned.
There are also double VPN servers that add extra privacy by routing your connection through two servers. Plus, its P2P servers let you torrent safely. Learn more in our NordVPN review.
NordVPN’s monthly plan will set you back $11.99 per month. The yearly plan works out to $4.99 per month, which is a good deal cheaper than ExpressVPN’s. If you want a long-term plan, NordVPN offers a two-year plan at $3.29 per month. If you’re wary about making a commitment right off the bat, use the 30-day money-back guarantee to get a feel for the VPN.
- : Unlimited GB
- : 6
- : Unlimited GB
- : 6
More details about Surfshark:
- Pricing: $2.49 per month (two-year plan)
- Provider website: surfshark.com
- DD-WRT tutorials
- Budget friendly
- Fast speeds
- Not all servers support torrenting
If you’re priced out of NordVPN and ExpressVPN, you can consider Surfshark, one of the most affordable VPNs. Surfshark provides comprehensive customer support, and it’s no surprise that it offers an exhaustive guide on how to set up DD-WRT on your router. It also has an informative video tutorial to boot.
Although Surfshark is not as fast as ExpressVPN or NordVPN, it posts exceptional speeds, especially high download speeds. This means that it could be a great choice for downloading large files. It also easily unblocks major streaming services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video.
High-Level Performance With Surfshark Nexus
Surfshark Nexus is an innovation from Surfshark that routes your VPN traffic through its network of servers rather than one server. This means that if the server you’re connected to is overloaded, Surfshark will automatically shift your traffic to a less-congested server. That way, you can enjoy fast speeds and stable connections while using your DD-WRT router with a VPN.
At $12.95 per month, Surfshark’s monthly plan is just as expensive as ExpressVPN’s. However, the one-year plan only costs $3.99 per month. Even better, the two-year plan beats down your monthly payments to $2.49. If you have doubts about the VPN provider, you can read our full-length Surfshark review or take it for a test run using its 30-day money-back guarantee.
More details about CyberGhost:
- Pricing: $2.37 per month (two-year plan)
- Provider website: cyberghostvpn.com
- DD-WRT tutorials
- Beginner friendly
- Excellent security features
- Inconsistent streaming speed
- Relatively slow speeds
One of CyberGhost’s strong suits is that it’s an easy-to-use VPN that’s perfect for beginners. Like all the VPNs on this list, CyberGhost has an insightful and easy-to-follow DD-WRT setup guide. The only downside is that it doesn’t have DD-WRT video tutorials — often a must-have for visual learners.
In addition, CyberGhost’s streaming performance is not at the level of the premium VPNs. For example, it struggles to unblock Amazon Prime Video. Its speed also leaves much to be desired, as the VPN does not even make it into our best fast VPNs list. However, the VPN has useful security features, including an ad and malware blocker to keep you safe online.
VPN Automation Features
CyberGhost lets you set up the VPN to your taste through its smart rules feature. For example, you can configure the VPN to connect to a server upon launching or open a specific website after connecting. This is one of the reasons CyberGhost appears in our beginner-friendly list. Learn more in our CyberGhost review.
CyberGhost’s monthly plan, at $12.99, is the most expensive on this list. However, the six-month plan ($6.99 per month) is far cheaper than the monthly plan. CyberGhost’s best value plan is the two-year plan, which costs $2.37 per month and adds two months free. Both the two-year and six-month plans have a 45-day money-back guarantee.
More details about VyprVPN:
- Pricing: $5 per month (one-year plan)
- Provider website: vyprvpn.com
- DD-WRT tutorials
- Solid security features
- Inconsistent speeds
You’ll notice that VyprVPN doesn’t often make the cut if you read many of our best VPN lists. However, the VPN finds itself here largely due to its support for DD-WRT routers. On VyprVPN’s website, you’ll find helpful tutorials and step-by-step guides to help you set up the VPN on DD-WRT routers from scratch.
However, VyprVPN is last on this list because it doesn’t quite offer the same level of performance as the VPNs above. As you can see in our VyprVPN review, it posts inconsistent speeds, and you might experience lags and buffering while streaming movies. That said, it unblocks the major streaming services, including BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime Video.
Protect Your Data With VyprVPN’s Security Features
VyprVPN is a popular choice among DD-WRT router users because of its security features. You get access to VyprDNS, which thwarts man-in-the-middle attacks and DNS filtering by routing your DNS requests through an extra-secure tunnel. Besides, VyprVPN is owned by a truly privacy-friendly company incorporated in Switzerland — the country with the strongest privacy laws.
VyprVPN offers only a monthly and yearly plan. At $10 per month, the monthly plan is one of the most affordable plans on the market. In contrast, the yearly plan, which costs $5 per month, is more expensive than that of all the other VPNs on this list, except ExpressVPN. If you want to test the VPN service yourself, use the 30-day money-back guarantee to check it out.
Which Free VPN Is Compatible With DD-WRT Routers?
Windscribe, Proton VPN and hide.me are notable free VPNs that offer configurations and support for DD-WRT routers. Each has installation guides and tutorials that can walk you through setting up the VPN service on your router without hassle.
That said, we don’t wholeheartedly recommend using a DD-WRT free VPN. If you read our best free VPNs piece, you’ll notice that they come with a variety of challenges and constraints. First, aside from no-logs free VPNs like the three mentioned above, many free VPNs often log your data and sell it to third parties and advertisers. What’s more, these VPNs might carry malware and dangerous software, as described in our worst VPNs article.
If you intend to use your VPN for high-definition streaming, free VPNs can’t help you much. They have data caps, bandwidth throttling and limited features that will make it hard for you to enjoy your streams.
For all the above reasons, we recommend going with the paid VPNs we listed in this article.
Best VPN for DD-WRT Router: Final Thoughts
Connecting a VPN service to your DD-WRT router is a smart way to protect multiple devices with one subscription. ExpressVPN is the best VPN for DD-WRT routers because it’s compatible with DD-WRT firmware and packs excellent features and streaming performance.
If ExpressVPN’s price is a deterrent, NordVPN is a cheaper yet lightning-fast VPN perfect for gaming. Surfshark is also a budget-friendly choice that offers decent features and performance. For new users, CyberGhost is a beginner-friendly pick. If none of the options above work for you, VyprVPN is worth considering, owing to its security features.
Did you learn something new while reading this article? Which VPN service would you like to try out? Which ones have you used previously for your DD-WRT router and what was your experience? Share your thoughts and comments with us in the comments section below. As always, thanks for reading.