PureVPN - Matrix

My experience using PureVPN

In Virtual Private Network by andre7 Comments

Update:March 25, 2017:
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I have been using HideMyAss VPN for over a year, and I am quite happy with it. My blog post “My experience with HideMyAss” attracted a lot of attention and since then I have received many requests from VPN vendors to review their services.

I have been looking for alternatives to HideMyAss since they made headlines regarding privacy issues, for some more details on this check out LulzSec Sony hacking case. Coincidentally, PureVPN has approached me and requested to evaluate their service. Their “split tunneling” (keep reading, this is pretty cool!) feature caught my eyes. To satisfy my inherent nerdiness and general curiosity I decided to give PureVPN a try. The following is an account of my experience using PureVPN:

Download the free PureVPN software 

and then explore it so you get a better sense how it works.

Enter PureVPN:

My first attempt to setup PureVPN failed; well, I tried manually, following their instructions for Mac OS. While I consider myself quite knowledgable about technology and setting up dialers and network connections, I got frustrated and downloaded their installer. This little piece of software is really simple to install and makes life a lot easier, just enter your login details and click connect, the dialer takes care of the rest – perfect!

I quite like their “Server Selection Tool” where you can select by country or purpose making it pretty obvious what to chose even for novices. You may choose from over 350 servers in 74 countries, giving you more than 60.000 IP addresses to hide behind.

PureVPN works with various Windows versions, OS X, Linux, Android and you can set it up on your iPhone and iPad as well. No matter what platform, they seem to have you covered. They support SSTP, L2PT, IPSec and PPTP, and OpenVPN &IKEv2 protocols with 256-bit SSL or AES, military grade encryption.

I used pureVPN for about 2 weeks while traveling between the US and Canada on the road and at home. For testing purposes I selected servers in various countries and I must say, the speed they are providing is impressive. As expected speeds varied by server, but most of the time, the my connection is fast enough to watch streaming videos without any problem.

PureVPN is one of the few providers who support Split Tunneling, routing only some traffic (some applications) through the VPN while allowing access to a LAN or WAN at the same time. If you need to access a corporate network or have applications that don’t play nicely with VPNs, Split tunneling will help maintain your sanity, because you don’t always have to disconnect from and reconnect to PureVPN. Unfortunately, this feature is only available with their Windows dialer, but with the majority of computers still running Windows chances are, you’ll be able to use it.

PureVPN Split Tunneling

I used Chrome, Skype, Dropbox and a variety of other programs without issues, but Mail didn’t connect no matter what. Unable to resolve this issue I contacted support, which you can conveniently do from within their application. The interface is straightforward and works well. I received a response via email within 24 hours. Unfortunately their response was less than customer oriented, just a one liner directing me to the server selection in their application, which didn’t help much. Only after playing around with it I discovered that a few servers have “email” in brackets at the end, and after selecting one of those receiving email was a breeze.

Unfortunately this reminded me of another support contact when I inquired about their “logging” policies a few weeks earlier, an important issue if you are serious about protecting your privacy. The response was similar, pointing me to their terms and conditions without further explanation.

Customer service is important to me, not that I use it often, but when I pay a premium, I do expect first class support, not canned one-liners. This maybe a non-issue for you and maybe whoever got my inquiries might just have had a bad day. Overall I read many positive things about their support.

I use all Apple products, but other people in the office use Windows. They too were quite happy with PureVPN and were actually able to use some of the advanced features they offer, like Split Tunneling, the Country Selection Tool, and Secure DNS.

The Country Selection tool, which includes the “Smart Intelligence Speed Test Tool” enables you to select the fastest server for your purpose, taking the guess work out of selecting a server. Purevpn Server Selection Purpose

PureVPN offers a feature called Secure DNS, basically a way to hide your DNS queries from your ISP (Internet Service Provider). Even though you are using a VPN, your computer may still send DNS queries to your ISP, which in turn then knows where you are navigating to and, at their option, can drop your connection or record your activity. Other VPN providers implement their own solutions to resolve this issue, but if you are seriously concerned about privacy, this is an easy-to-miss step. Please make sure you know where your DNS queries go BEFORE heading out there!

PureVPN Secure DNS

PureVPN offers a variety of payment options including PayPal, Credit Card, AliPay, Payment Wallet, Payza, Bank Transfer and Bitcoin, making it easily available to most people.

PureVPN’s pricing is straight forward, but not cheap when compared to similar services with plans starting at 9.95/month and up. However, considering the speed and ease of use compared to other providers the price is certainly justified. Committing to a longer time gets you about a 65% discount. If you decide to go with PureVPN I would certainly advise yearly subscriptions.

If you liked this review, please share it with your friends. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think about PureVPN, especially if your thoughts are contrary to mine and/or you have used it yourself!

Click here to try PureVPN Risk Free

Image Credit: phsymyst

Comments

  1. I use skype to talk to a friend in the USA, I am in London, I have no problem until I try to connect purevpn I lose the connection within a couple of minutes, disconnect purevpn, again no problem with the Skype connection.
    I have followed instructions from the purevpn people but i still lose the connection.
    Any ideas??

  2. ABSOLUTELY AWFUL experience with this company! I paid for a full year (trusting the 7-day trial promise) and after less than 24 hours, I asked for a refund because PureVPN absolutely did not work for me. I spent nearly 2 hours on chat (sometimes waiting more than 5 minutes between answers) and tried every suggestion they made, but still was unable to connect or stay connected. They are refusing to refund my year because of an obscure clause in their terms and conditions that is NOT referenced as part of the 7-day trial. PureVPN is an abject failure and a fraudulent company. Steer clear!

  3. hi there community, take care they do not provide money back guarantee as they advertize with I bought 4 time 12 months accounts for the whole family and got nothing back paypal left me aside too as it is no physical thing a license. I found out that your geo status is not changed and sites can see where aou access from their sites I started to complain about it after 37 hours but no money back Mr. manager got a nice steak on my costs

    1. I will go with Hidemyass. Since they both keep logs and have similar features software wise, I will choose HMA because it has more VPN servers in more countries. More IPs means less chances to get a random IP that is already baned.

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