BTGuard VPN Review
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BTGuard is headquartered in Canada. They carry the endorsement of TorrentFreak, which gives them quite a bit of credibility as far as P2P use goes. They have a relatively small server network compared to some other providers. They do offer 256-bit encryption, however, and their service is very streamlined and easy to use.
Pricing and Plans
BTGuard has two services you can choose from.
- BitTorrent Proxy: $6.95 per month. This comes with auTorrent client that’s setup to work with the BitTorrent proxy service. It doesn’t provide an encrypted connection, but it does hide your IP when you’re downloading from a Bittorrent swarm. You can also use this service with other clients, but it requires that you configure them manually.
- VPN: $9.95 per month. This option offers PPTP and OpenVPN. It’s a rather basic service compared to some other providers, but it does perform very well.
You can pay with PayPal or Bitcoin.
Free Trial / Money Back Guarantee
The BTGuard site is rather lacking in details here, but there appears to be neither.
Privacy & Anonymity
This is an area where BTGuard excels. The service keeps no logs of your activity. They also take Bitcoin, a significant privacy advantage.
Given their name, BTGuard obviously allows torrenting on their network, and is one of the better choices for using P2P in general.
There’s a knowledge base and FAQ on the site. There’s also a ticketing system you can use to contact support for problems you cannot solve on your own.
BTGuard doesn’t provide its own client. You can configure your PPTP connection manually or, if you opt to use the more secure OpenVPN protocol, you can use the OpenVPN GUI. The configuration files for OpenVPN can be downloaded from the account area of the site. They come in a package that automatically unzips them to the correct directory. Once they’re installed, you can select any of the servers on the BTGuard network from the OpenVPN GUI.
Windows, Mac OSX, Android, IPhone, etc.
BTGuard has instructions for setting up their service on a variety of different operating systems, including Mac, Android, Ubuntu, Tomato, DD-WRT, iOS and more. Credit where it’s due: They had Windows 10 instructions on the first day the OS became available.
BTGuard Baseline Speedtest
BTGuard VPN Speedtest
BTGuard tested very well in terms of speed. Using their OpenVPN option, we were able to get greater than 33Mbps speed, as you can see from the screenshots. This was a small reduction off of our 48Mbps baseline and certainly fast enough to torrent.
IPCheck and DNSLeak
BTGuard changed our IP address but, as is the case with many VPN services without their own clients, our DNS did leak. Configure your DNS server manually when hooking up to the network for the best possible privacy.
- PPTP, OpenVPN
- 256-bit encryption
- Fast network
- Accepts Bitcoin
- Wide compatibility
The speed was impressive with this service. Accepting Bitcoin is also a bonus. Combine that with BTGuard’s commitment to protecting user privacy and you have a great P2P solution.
Areas for Improvement
Again, this is one of theservices that hasn’t bothered to release their own client. While the OpenVPN client is fine as far as functionality goes, it doesn’t offer much to engage people with using their VPN.
BTGuard is excellent, but they don’t have the ease of use that comes with a custom client, as many of our top providers do. Their network is more limited than many other providers, but it does offer the best locations for P2P. For those who want to torrent, the VPN is a better choice because of the encryption it offers, but the proxy might be enough for some. The prices are competitive, but not stellar. Overall, BTGuard is worth the money if you don’t mind using the generic OpenVPN GUI and if you’re main concernsare privacy and suitability for torrenting.