A Virtual Private Network (VPN) has become an essential internet privacy and security tool for Ubuntu users. VPNs encrypt all data between your devices and the internet, preventing governments, hackers, and even internet providers from tracking your online activities or accessing sensitive information.
ExpressVPN stands out as an industry leader – offering users a fast, reliable, and secure VPN service to protect internet browsing on Ubuntu. With servers in 94 countries, ultra-fast speeds, and watertight encryption, ExpressVPN ticks all boxes for privacy-focused Ubuntu users.
In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to setup and use ExpressVPN on the Ubuntu operating system. Follow along for pro tips on configuration, deep dives into their infrastructure, plus comparisons with other VPN options for Ubuntu.
II. Setting up ExpressVPN on Ubuntu
Getting started with ExpressVPN on Ubuntu is quick and painless. Simply follow these steps:
First, visit ExpressVPN.com and click Sign Up to create a username and password. Plans start from $6.67/month for their 1-year subscription.
Download the Linux App
On the account dashboard, download the ExpressVPN Linux client provided as a .deb installer file.
Connect to a VPN Server
Double-click the .deb package to launch the installer and get connected in just a few clicks via NetworkManager. Or for terminal experts, use command line tools like dpkg or apt to complete installation.
Once successfully installed and running, the ExpressVPN app icon appears in the system tray. Click Connect to establish an encrypted tunnel to their VPN network with a single click!
Diagnostics and Troubleshooting
Inside advanced settings, run speed tests or connection diagnostics to optimize performance. Contact their 24/7 live chat support with any troubleshooting questions to crush connectivity issues.
III. Deep Dive into ExpressVPN’s Server Technology
ExpressVPN built its service from scratch in 2009 with a staunch focus on security, speed, and trust across every component. Central to this is their proprietary VPN server tech called TrustedServer, custom-engineered to offer users the fastest speeds with minimal latency.
Let’s explore what sets their server infrastructure apart:
The TrustedServer Difference
Like a gourmet 5-star meal, ExpressVPN controls every ingredient and process in crafting TrustedServer technology. Just as an expert chef sources premium ingredients – ExpressVPN hand selects cutting-edge hardware, operating systems, security controls and physical data centers.
These base components integrate into a final product greater than the sum of parts. TrustedServer brings elite-level privacy, security and speed unavailable using off-the-shelf solutions.
Server Design Overview
This diagram outlines the custom server components physically safeguarded in hardened data centers:
[insert diagram of TrustedServer components – contact me to provide image]
Core layers include CPU, memory and storage riding on an open source Linux distro hardened by ExpressVPN. Automatic failover and load balancing ensure optimal reliability and performance under peak demand. Integrated virtualization enables scaling capacity while maintaining security isolation across virtual servers.
OS and Software Components
TrustedServer runs a lightweight modular Linux distribution optimized by ExpressVPN called RunCore. This handles baseline functions like resource allocation, user permissions, backups and networking components.
Custom Bash scripts then deploy additional layered apps like web servers, caching, databases, and VPN tunneling protocols in isolated containers only as necessary. This lean approach starts bare then adds modular components for improved security.
Upgrades and Maintenance
ExpressVPN engineers frequently publish incremental TrustedServer upgrades with security enhancements. These push seamlessly via automation scripting to maintain symmetry across the global server constellation.
Rather than manually updating thousands of servers – changes deploy programmatically in a repeatable and verifiable manner. This devops approach enables rapidly issuing critical patches without downtime.
In summary, ExpressVPN custom-tailored every facet of TrustedServer technology to empower users with elite privacy and blistering fast speeds.
IV. VPN Setup Guides for Ubuntu
Next let’s run through various methods for setting up and configuring the ExpressVPN service on Ubuntu machines:
ExpressVPN App Install
The simplest way to get started is downloading and installing ExpressVPN’s official Linux app. This brings a user-friendly GUI and quick connect features:
- Create an ExpressVPN account
- Download the .deb installer package
- Double click to launch installer via Ubuntu Software
- Click Install in popup dialog
- Enter admin password when prompted
- Connect to VPN server via new app icon!
Manual OpenVPN Configuration
Intermediate Ubuntu users can optionally skip the official app and manually configure VPN connections using the built-in OpenVPN client:
- Install OpenVPN via apt on terminal
- Download ExpressVPN .ovpn config files
- Import the .ovpn profiles into OpenVPN
- Connect to VPN server through OpenVPN GUI
This process requires more effort but allows tighter control in configuring ExpressVPN.
Ubuntu Network Manager Setup
Finally, Linux power users can manually add ExpressVPN within Network Manager for advanced configuration:
- Install necessary plugins for NetworkManager
- Import .ovpn profiles from ExpressVPN
- Configure connections via Network Connections menu
- Connect via VPN sub-menu under the WiFi icon
NetworkManager enables granular control in applying ExpressVPN across any network interface.
V. Alternative VPN Options for Ubuntu
Beyond ExpressVPN, open-source VPN solutions like Outline also exist for adding an encrypted tunnel on Ubuntu. Outline takes a nonprofit approach based on principles of accessibility, transparency, and privacy.
Here’s an overview of using Outline VPN on Ubuntu:
Outline uses Shadowsocks, a free and open VPN protocol, at its core alongside a range of open source utilities for encryption. The software is provided by the non-commercial Vectordash.
- Visit Outline Manager to download the Manager module
- Follow Ubuntu installation instructions for the Outline package
- Click Add Server to configure a new VPN connection
- Select location and enter server credentials
- Connect to the VPN server through Outline GUI
Outline VPN Features
Outline offers a basic VPN tunnel albeit through less proven technology than ExpressVPN’s enterprise solution. However Outline’s free nonprofit service appeals for supporters of accessibility.
In closing, ExpressVPN offers a premium VPN solution focused on high-performance privacy across user platforms like Ubuntu. Their TrustedServer technology raises the bar in balancing security, speed, and reliability. Configuring ExpressVPN via their official Ubuntu app provides a simplified method for masking your IP and encrypting traffic.
Open source options like Outline provide free nonprofit alternatives – albeit built on infrastructure less battle-tested at global scale. However supporters of open access may find its approach aligned with ideals of empowering users with privacy tools regardless of economic status.
Overall ExpressVPN still leads the industry across core metrics while opening up VPN technology to the mainstream Ubuntu masses. Their commitment to evolving privacy-focused solutions offers peace of mind for users focused on security.