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Ultimate guide: How to install a VPN for Kodi for enhanced privacy

Verified by Nick Jones Editor-in-Chief

Learn how to install a VPN on Kodi for enhanced privacy. This comprehensive guide provides step-by-step instructions and recommendations for VPN providers compatible with Kodi

Online privacy and security are an ever-increasing concern for internet users, whether they use the internet for work or entertainment. A virtual private network (VPN) is a tool that helps safeguard against data breaches and other cybercrime. When paired with Kodi, an open-source media centre software, a VPN can significantly enhance your streaming experience by ensuring online security and privacy, bypassing geo-restrictions and protecting against internet service provider (ISP) throttling.

An effective VPN solution allows you to stream content across different regions, protecting your identity by hiding your IP address and providing a secure environment free from cyberthreats. However, choosing and implementing a reliable VPN for Kodi can be daunting due to the variety of options available and the potentially complicated installation procedure.

This article simplifies the choice by comparing some of the best VPNs suitable for Kodi based on criteria such as server network, speed, security, compatibility and pricing. To help you ensure a safe and hassle-free streaming experience with Kodi, we’ll walk you through the whole process – from choosing the best VPN for Kodi to installing and configuring it on various devices and operating systems.

Why use a VPN with Kodi?

Using Kodi without a VPN exposes you to several risks. First, without a VPN, your ISP can monitor your online activities, including your Kodi usage. This compromises your privacy and allows your ISP to track and sell your browsing data. In addition, streaming copyrighted content on Kodi without a VPN can lead to legal repercussions, as your IP address is visible to copyright holders. Remember that even with a VPN, viewing or downloading copyrighted material without the correct permissions is illegal and should not be done.

Moreover, without encryption provided by a VPN, your data becomes vulnerable to interception by hackers or cybercriminals, putting your personal information at risk. Additionally, you cannot bypass geo-restrictions without a VPN, limiting your access to region-specific content on Kodi.

Using a VPN with Kodi provides significant benefits, addressing all the above concerns, enhancing your streaming experience and ensuring your privacy. Here are the key reasons to use a VPN with Kodi:

  • Bypass geo-restrictions and access global content: Streaming platforms often have region-specific content due to licensing agreements. Using a VPN with multiple server locations worldwide allows you to connect to servers in different countries, bypassing geo-restrictions and accessing a broader range of content. This means you can enjoy your favourite movies, TV series and other media from your home country that may be restricted or unavailable in a specific region when you’re on holiday
  • Privacy and anonymity: When you use Kodi without a VPN, your ISP and other parties can monitor your online activities. A VPN encrypts your internet traffic and hides your IP address, ensuring your browsing history remains private and anonymous
  • Enhanced security: A VPN adds an extra layer of security by encrypting your data, protecting it from potential hackers or cybercriminals. This is particularly important when streaming content on Kodi, as it shields your personal information and helps prevent unauthorised access to your devices
  • Overcome bandwidth throttling: Some ISPs throttle internet speeds for specific activities, including streaming. Using a VPN means your traffic is encrypted, making it difficult for your ISP to detect and throttle your bandwidth. This can result in improved streaming performance and smoother playback on Kodi
  • Protection on public networks: A VPN enhances security when using Kodi on public wifi networks, such as in airports, libraries, lobbies or coffee shops. It encrypts your data, protecting it from potential eavesdroppers or malicious actors lurking on the same network

Let’s go through the step-by-step process of installing a VPN on Kodi:

Step 1: Choose a VPN provider

Selecting a VPN for Kodi is the first crucial step to enhancing your streaming experience and ensuring your online privacy. Below are key factors to consider when choosing a VPN provider suitable for Kodi:

  • Global server network: Choose a VPN with a wide server range to enhance your ability to bypass geo-restrictions, reduce latency and access content from various locations
  • Speed: Opt for a VPN known for high-speed connections and unlimited bandwidth to prevent buffering. Use reviews, testimonials and free trials to gauge performance
  • Security features: Prioritise VPNs with high-grade security features, such as robust encryption, leak protection and a kill switch. An audited no-logs policy ensures your data isn’t stored or shared
  • User interface: An intuitive, easy-to-navigate interface saves you time and promotes a smoother user experience
  • Simultaneous connections: A VPN that allows multiple connections provides comprehensive coverage for all your devices
  • Customer support: A VPN provider that offers reliable, 24/7 customer support through multiple channels can aid in troubleshooting and queries
  • Payment flexibility: Look for diverse payment options and a solid refund policy to ensure value for your money and a safety net if the service doesn’t meet your expectations

When selecting a Kodi VPN, consider these factors to ensure it meets your needs for smooth streaming and strong online privacy. Note that only a limited number of VPNs work with Kodi. We also wouldn’t recommend using a free VPN with Kodi, as they often come with data limits that would make streaming virtually impossible.

Here are some reliable VPN providers that offer true server location and compatibility with Kodi:

  • NordVPN provides an excellent blend of privacy, security, speed, server network and cost
  • Surfshark features an extensive server network and locations, excellent security and privacy at an affordable price
  • ExpressVPN offers speed, security and unlimited devices

Step 2: Install the VPN on your device

The installation process is similar for most VPNs, regardless of the provider. We’ll use NordVPN as an example, covering the process briefly. If you need a more comprehensive guide, check how to download and install NordVPN.

For Windows devices:

  1. Visit the VPN website. In our case, this is NordVPN’s official website.
  2. Download the app. Look for the version designed for Windows and click on the “Download App” button to start the download process.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Windows 1
    The NordVPN lists where and how to download its app on all supported devices (NordVPN)

     

  3. Initiate the installation. Once you’ve downloaded the NordVPN setup file, locate it and double-click NordVPNSetup.exe in your PC’s “Download” folder to launch the NordVPN installer.
  4. Confirm Installation. A prompt will appear on your screen, requesting permission for NordVPN to make changes to your device. ClickYes to continue with the installation process. Select the location on your system where you’d like to install NordVPN and click Next.”
    How to install VPN for Kodi Windows 2

  5. Finalise the installation. Click the Install button to initiate the process. Once the installation is complete, a screen message will confirm the successful installation. Click the Finish button.

For Mac devices:

Before you proceed to the installation process, note that to use NordVPN apps, your macOS must be updated to version 10.15 (Catalina) or later.

  1. Visit the VPN website. In our case, this is NordVPN’s official website.
  2. To download the NordVPN app for macOS, click the Download App button.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Mac 1

  3. Initiate the installation. Once downloaded, find the file named “NordVPN.pkg” in your “Downloads” folder and double-click it to begin the installation process.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Mac 2

  4. Install the “Helper” component. During the installation, a request will pop up to install a “Helper” component, which is crucial for creating secure VPN tunnels. Enter your Mac’s password and click “OK” or confirm with a fingerprint if your device supports it.
  5. Continue the installation. An install window will guide you through the rest of the installation. Select Continue and click Install to complete the process.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Mac 3
  6. Confirm installation. Once the installation is complete, a message will appear confirming that NordVPN has been successfully installed on your Mac.

You can close the window and start using NordVPN for safe internet browsing.

For iOS devices:

  1. Open the App Store on your device and search for NordVPN. (Note: If you’re in a country with VPN restrictions, NordVPN might not be available in your App Store. In this case, follow Apple’s instructions for creating an Apple ID in another region).
  2. Click the “Download” button to start the installation process.
    How to install VPN for Kodi iOS 1
  3. Select “Open to launch NordVPN once downloaded.
  4. Log in or register. You can log in immediately if you already have a NordVPN account. If not, you’ll be prompted to register. You can sign up using your email, Google account or Apple account.
  5. Agree to the privacy policy to finalise your registration.

Once all these steps are completed, NordVPN will be ready for use on your iOS device.

For Android devices:

Before you proceed to the installation process, note that the VPN app is compatible with versions 7.0 to 13.0, and you can download it in a few simple steps:

  1. Open the Google Play Store on your Android device and search for “NordVPN.”
  2. Locate the NordVPN app in the search results and click “Install.”
    How to install VPN for Kodi Android 1

  3. Find the NordVPN app on your device and open it.
  4. Log in or register. You’ll be prompted to sign up for a new account or log in to an existing one. If you have an account, select “Log In.”
    How to install VPN for Kodi Android 2

Once logged in, the NordVPN app will automatically reopen, and you’ll be ready to start using NordVPN on your Android device.

Step 3: Configure VPN settings in Kodi

Reliable VPN providers, such as NordVPN, route your internet traffic through the VPN server, effectively masking your real IP address and placing it in the VPN’s location.

The simplest method to use a VPN with Kodi uses the following steps:

  1. Start the VPN software on your device
  2. Connect to your desired server location
  3. Open Kodi and enjoy secure streaming

There is a more complex method that requires additional steps to complete. In this section, we delve into this method and explore the simplest way to configure VPN settings on various devices.

Let’s get started.

On your computer

The best VPN providers typically have dedicated support pages that explain essential details. This information usually includes easy-to-follow instructions for using Kodi with the VPN, add-ons to download and references to informative support pages.

Check the support page if you’re using a VPN other than NordVPN. Otherwise, follow the steps below:

  1. Ensure that you have version 2.7 of Python installed on your system.
  2. Download OpenVPN Connect. Navigate to the official OpenVPN download page and select the version suitable for your operating system.
  3. Install OpenVPN Connect and make sure that it’s available from your command line. OpenVPN comes pre-installed on Kodi if you’re running LibreELEC or OpenELEC. For Windows users, you may need to install OpenVPN separately and include it in your command path.
  4. Download the NordVPN add-on .zip file and transfer it to your Kodi device.
  5. Allow unknown sources. Open Kodi, navigate to Settings > System settings > Add-ons and toggle “Unknown sources” ON.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 1

  6. A warning message will pop up. You can safely agree by clicking Yes.”
    How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 2

  7. Return to the home screen and click “Add-ons.” In the “Add-ons” menu, select the Package button.
    How to install VPN for Kodi configure 3

  8. Choose “Install from zip file.”
  9. Locate and select the NordVPNSetup.zip file.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 4

  10. After the installation, a prompt will appear asking you to run the VPN setup wizard.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 5

  11. Click on “Wizard.” The wizard will guide you through the process, including entering your NordVPN account credentials.
  12. The wizard will then ask you if you want the VPN to connect automatically on startup. If so, select the country you want to connect to.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 6

Once completed, your Kodi will be connected to a VPN, ensuring a secure streaming experience.

How to install VPN for Kodi Configure 7

On your Windows PC – the easier way 

A setup screen will appear when you sign up for NordVPN and open it for the first time, allowing you to customise your VPN experience.

How to install VPN for Kodi easy configure 1

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose to auto-connect whenever you use Ethernet, wifi or mobile data.
  2. Enable the quick connect option to a VPN server when the app launches.
  3. Turn on the kill switch feature, which halts internet traffic if the VPN connection unexpectedly drops, preserving your anonymity.
  4. Enable threat protection to secure your browsing from various online threats.
    Once you’ve adjusted these settings, click Next.” You’ll now see the main interface of the VPN app, which will automatically connect you to the optimal server.
    How to install VPN for Kodi easy configure 2
  5. Open Kodi and enjoy secure streaming.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Easy configure 3

On your Mac

Setting up NordVPN on your Mac is easier than it might seem. Here’s how:

  1. Open NordVPN from your Launchpad.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Mac configure 1

  2. If you’re an existing user, click Log In,” then enter your email and password. New users should click Sign Up.”
  3. Open NordVPN. For a quick connection, hit the Quick Connect button in the screen’s top-right. NordVPN’s algorithm will find an optimal server for you.
    How to install VPN for Kodi Mac configure 2

  4. If you need a different server, the Maptab gives you a global overview of NordVPN servers. Select one that suits your needs. Alternatively, use the Search field on the top-left to connect to a specific country’s server.

And that’s it! Your VPN is ready. Open Kodi and enjoy secure streaming.

On your Android device

  1. On your Android device, open the Google Play Store.
  2. In the search bar, type “Kodi” and initiate the search.
  3. Click on the “Install” button to download and install the Kodi app on your device.
  4. Launch your VPN app and sign in with your credentials.
  5. Connect to a server to activate your VPN.
  6. Launch Kodi and immerse yourself in secure streaming.

This simple process will have Kodi set up and ready on your Android device in no time.

On your iOS device

Installing Kodi on iOS requires a jailbroken device. Here are the steps:

  1. Ensure that you’re using a jailbroken iOS device. Your jailbroken device must be running on iOS 6.0 or higher.
  2. Install Kodi. Open Cydia, iFile or Filza on your iOS device. Locate and install the Kodi app.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation process.
  4. Launch your VPN app and sign in using your credentials.
  5. Connect to a server. Your VPN is now active.
  6. Open Kodi and enjoy secure streaming.

On your Roku

While Roku does not directly support Kodi, a workaround allows you to enjoy the Kodi experience on your Roku device – screen mirroring. This technique mirrors the content of your Windows or Android device onto your Roku.

To set up Roku:

  1. Ensure your Roku software is updated to at least version 5.6.
  2. Enable Screen Mirroring. Use your Roku remote to navigate to Settings.” Select Systemand then “Screen Mirroring.” Set it to “Enable Screen Mirroring and confirm with OK.”

For Windows devices:

  1. Go to Settings and select Devices.”
  2. Choose Add Bluetooth or Other Devices,” and then select Wireless Display.”
  3. Your Roku device should appear in the list. Select it to establish the connection.

For Android devices:

  1. Go to Settings,” select Connections,” and then select Screen Mirroring.”
  2. Tap Add Device,” and your Roku should appear on the list. Select it to pair your Android device with Roku.

Now that your screen mirroring is set up, ensure that your VPN is active on your Android or Windows device. Once you open Kodi, your Roku device will mirror its content, and you’ll be able to enjoy secure and private streaming on your Roku device. Remember, your VPN connection is linked to your Android or Windows device, not directly to Roku.

Note that this workaround requires that your Android or Windows device and Roku device are on the same network.

Best VPNs for Kodi

Here is a list of popular VPN services for Kodi ordered by their suitability, with the best one first:

  1. NordVPN
  2. Surfshark
  3. ExpressVPN
  4. CyberGhost
  5. PrivateVPN
  6. Private Internet Access
  7. Atlas VPN
  8. Proton VPN
VPN Number of servers/ countries Best features Compatibility with Kodi Best deal
NordVPN 5,000+ servers/ 60 countries AES-256 encryption; high-speed connections; no-log policy; best Kodi reliability Yes £2.79 per month
Surfshark 3,200+ servers/ 60+ countries No-log policy; unlimited devices; reliable and fast connections Yes £1.78 per month
ExpressVPN 3,000+ servers/ 94 countries Perfect forward secrecy; fast speeds; reliable access to streaming platforms Yes £5.25 per month
CyberGhost 9,000+ servers/ 91 countries Specialised servers; advanced security features; 45-day money-back guarantee Yes £1.92 per month
PrivateVPN 200 servers/ 63 countries User-friendly interface; fast streaming speeds Yes £1.86 per month
Private Internet Access 500+ servers/ 84 countries Consistent speeds; robust privacy and security features; unlimited number of connected devices Yes £1.69 per month
Atlas VPN 750+ servers/ 30+ countries Fast server speeds; strong unblocking capabilities; free plan (3 server locations) Yes £1.49 per month
ProtonVPN 2,700 servers /67 countries VPN accelerator technology; robust security protocols; free plan (152 servers in 3 locations) Yes €4.99 (£4.31) per month

1. NordVPN

NordVPN provides extensive server coverage with over 5,000 servers across 60 countries. The VPN efficiently unblocks geo-restricted content and facilitates high-speed connections for smooth streaming on Kodi. NordVPN employs 256-bit encryption, providing top-tier security. It also offers a strict no-log policy, ensuring that your online activity remains private.

  • Pros: Extensive server coverage, high-speed connections, top-tier security
  • Cons: The desktop app may seem cumbersome for first-time users

Pricing: Starts from £2.79 per month (£66.96 up front) for a 24-month subscription

2. Surfshark

Surfshark stands out by providing a cost-effective solution, offering over 3,200 servers in more than 60 countries, making it the best cheap VPN on the market. It facilitates reliable and fast connections and allows unlimited simultaneous device connections. A strong security and privacy framework backs the service, and it maintains a strict no-log policy.

  • Pros: Cost-effective, reliable and fast connections, unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Cons: Server connection might take a bit longer than other services

Pricing: Starts from £1.78 per month (£46.39 up front) for a 24-month subscription (plus two months free)

3. ExpressVPN

Kodi users favour ExpressVPN for its vast server network across 94 countries and fast connection speeds. The VPN guarantees reliable access to various streaming platforms and offers top-tier security standards with perfect forward secrecy. It has a simple, intuitive user interface and maintains a strict no-log policy.

  • Pros: Vast server network, fast speeds, reliable access to streaming platforms
  • Cons: Higher price point compared to competitors

Pricing: Starts from £5.25 (£78.67 up front) per month for a 12-month subscription (plus three months free)

4. CyberGhost

CyberGhost is unique with its feature that categorises servers based on the video streaming service users wish to access. It continues to expand its server network, currently reaching 9,000+ servers spread across 91 different countries, and offers impressive speeds and advanced security features. However, its lack of direct APK download for Android might be a setback.

  • Pros: Unique server categorisation feature, expanding server network, impressive speeds
  • Cons: Lack of direct APK download for Android versions

Pricing: Starts from £1.92 per month (£49.92 up front) for a 24-month subscription (plus three months free)

5. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN stands out for its fast streaming speeds and effective unblocking of various streaming services, perfect for Kodi. Despite its smaller network of servers (200 high-performance units located across 63 countries), it provides robust security protocols and maintains a strict no-log policy.

  • Pros: User-friendly interface, fast streaming speeds, effective unblocking capabilities
  • Cons: Smaller network of servers

Pricing: Starts from £1.86 per month (£67 up front) for 36 months

6. Private Internet Access

Private Internet Access (PIA) provides consistent speeds and an extensive server network built by 500+ servers in 84 countries. It provides for an unlimited number of connected devices and offers robust privacy and security features coupled with a strict no-log policy. However, it might face challenges in unblocking certain geo-restricted content compared with other providers.

  • Pros: Consistent speeds, extensive server network, robust privacy and security features
  • Cons: Some challenges in unblocking certain geo-restricted content

Pricing: Starts from £1.69 per month (£43.94 up front) for a two-year plan, plus two months free

7. Atlas VPN

Atlas VPN offers fast server speeds and strong unblocking capabilities. It includes security features such as encryption and malware blocking but lacks advanced obfuscation technology, which might limit its capability to bypass stringent censorship regimes.

  • Pros: Fast server speeds, strong unblocking capabilities, competitive pricing
  • Cons: Lacks advanced obfuscation technology

Pricing: Starts from £1.49 per month (£40.34 up front) for a two-year subscription, plus three months free

8. ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN shines with its VPN accelerator technology, significantly boosting VPN speeds. While it provides robust security protocols and a strict no-log policy, it has fewer servers than other top-tier VPNs, which may impact speed and reliability in certain regions.

  • Pros: VPN accelerator technology, robust security protocols, no-log policy
  • Cons: Fewer servers than other top-tier VPNs, expensive

Pricing: Starts from €4.99 (£4.31) per month (€119.76/£103.48 up front) for a two-year subscription

Final takeaways

Pairing a VPN with Kodi is like having a private, secure VIP pass to all your favourite shows and movies. A VPN masks your IP address and encrypts your data, effectively putting a cloak of invisibility around your online activities. It safeguards you from prying eyes, including your ISP, prevents speed throttling and keeps you safe from potential cyberthreats, especially when streaming on public networks.

Choosing a VPN resembles choosing a trusty sidekick – you need it to be reliable, quick and tough. A vast global server network, lightning-fast speed and solid security features should be high on your priority list. Our top picks? We vouch for NordVPN, Surfshark VPN and ExpressVPN but have listed other viable options you can also consider.

Getting your VPN up and running with Kodi doesn’t have to be complicated – just start your VPN software, connect to the server location that suits your needs and launch Kodi for a smooth, secure streaming session. And don’t forget that there’s a whole line-up of reliable VPN services, including CyberGhost, PrivateVPN, PIA, Atlas VPN and ProtonVPN.

At the end of the day, whichever VPN you opt for, remember this: a VPN isn’t just nice to have – it’s a must-have for a secure, optimised Kodi streaming experience to maximise your internet connectivity.

Frequently asked questions about using a VPN with Kodi

A VPN is recommended for Kodi to protect your data, prevent ISP tracking and bypass geographical limitations.

Using a VPN with Kodi is legal. To stay on the safe side, choose a trustworthy VPN provider. However, it is illegal to stream or download copyrighted material without the correct permissions, even with a VPN.

Using a VPN with Kodi is safe, especially when you opt for reliable providers, such as NordVPN, Surfshark or ExpressVPN.

Secure your Kodi with a VPN, such as NordVPN. Install the VPN, follow the setup guide, choose a server and you’re all set.

Yes, you can install a VPN on Firestick. You’ll need to configure the VPN on your router to set up Kodi on your Fire TV Stick. Just ensure the VPN is compatible with the Fire TV Stick.

We recommend NordVPN, Surfshark and ExpressVPN as the best Kodi VPN options.

Round up of today’s best VPN deals
NordVPN 2 year £2.49 /Month
£2.49 /Month
Surfshark 24 month £1.79 /Month
£1.79 /Month
ExpressVPN 12 month £6.77 /Month
£6.77 /Month
CyberGhost 2 year £1.78 /Month
£1.78 /Month
Proton 2 year £4.27 /Month
£4.27 /Month
PIA 2 year £1.57 /Month
£1.57 /Month
Atlas 2 year £1.34 /Month
£1.34 /Month
PrivadoVPN 2 year £1.99 /Month
£1.99 /Month
Windscribe 12 month £4.53 /Month
£4.53 /Month
IPVanish 2 year £3.58 /Month
£3.58 /Month

Independent Advisor does not endorse the streaming of content from regions other than where the subscription is held, nor does it endorse the downloading or consumption of illegally pirated content.

Mariana is an experienced technology writer specialising in web and internet technology. She writes about cyber security, including VPN; web development; and software engineering. She has been writing since 2006 and held a position of English lecturer at Technical University of Varna in Bulgaria until 2022, working in a variety of educational fields.

For the Independent Advisor, Mariana writes about the usefulness of VPNs and how people can protect themselves and their data online.

Nick Jones

Editor in Chief

Nick Jones is a highly experienced consumer journalist and editor, who has been writing and producing content for print and online media for over 25 years.

He has worked at some of the UK’s leading publishers including Future Publishing, Highbury Entertainment, and Imagine Publishing, with publications as diverse as Homebuilding & Renovating, TechRadar, and Creative Bloq, writing and editing content for audiences whose interests include history, computing, gaming, films, and science. He’s also produced a number of podcasts in the technology, science, gaming, and true crime genres.

Nick has also enjoyed a highly successful career in content marketing, working in a variety of topics such as health, technology, and finance, with market-leading global companies including Cisco, Pfizer, Santander, and Virgin Media.

Now the Editor-in-Chief of the Independent Advisor, Nick is involved in all aspects of the site’s content, where his expertise in finance, technology, and home products informs every article that’s published on-site. He takes a hands-on approach with our VPN content, penning a number of the articles himself, and verifying that everything we publish in this topic is accurate.

Whatever the area of interest he’s worked in, Nick has always been a consumer champion, helping people find the best deals and give them the information they need to make an informed buying decision.