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Support Center / Setup and use / ProtonVPN macOS Application

ProtonVPN macOS Application

This is a simple guide to installing and using the VPN application for Mac which is built by the ProtonVPN team.

Note: ProtonVPN application for mac is available only for macOS 10.12 and above.

The first step is to visit our https://protonvpn.com website and log in to your account. Then click on Downloads section and select Mac.

Click on Download for MacOS button.

Make sure you click on “save file“.

Now the downloaded Mac VPN application should be located on your application bar, downloads section like displayed in the screenshot. Just single click on the downloaded .dmg file and it will start extracting.

After extracting the Mac VPN application the next step is to click, hold and drag ProtonVPN logo to the applications folder.

After this is performed, the ProtonVPN Mac application will appear in the application folder, or application menu like in the screenshot below. Just simply open the application.

You will be prompted with a message that this application is downloaded from the internet and not the app store. Click on “Open” and proceed to the log in screen.

In the login screen, you have to enter your username and password that you registered on ProtonVPN or ProtonMail. Also, you can see that you have a few options like “Remember Login” and “Start on Boot“. When both of these options are enabled, the Mac VPN application will simply start on boot without any need to log-in.

Once you have successfully entered the credentials, you’ll be logged-in into the UI of the Mac VPN application.

Here you can see the country list, quick connect button, your current IP address and a switch for secure core servers.If you are looking for the fastest way to get secured, just click on the quick connect button and you will be connected to the closest server to your current location with the lowest load for best performance.

On the Profiles tab, you can either create your own profile with Custom settings or use pre-made profiles that are Fastest and Random.

To get to the application settings, check for updates or Log Out out of your account you have to navigate to the top-left of your Mac and click on “ProtonVPN” to get the application menu.Here you can see our application options that you can configure per your own preference. Also, you can check your account and your current plan on the Account tab.

In the country list of the Mac VPN application, you can see country names with different logos. Two arrows facing different ways mean that the country has servers that support P2P traffic. Onion logo stands for Tor over VPN servers that you can find in that country.
You can expand the specific country list to see all available servers by clicking the down arrow on the right side.


IMPORTANT STEPS FOR SUCCESSFUL CONNECTION:

When trying to connect to the VPN application for Mac, the first time you will have to allow our software to add VPN configurations in your macOS settings. This is needed in order to allow our software to redirect all of your internet traffic trough the VPN tunnel and give our software capabilities of controlling your network settings for the VPN.

Also, you will have to enter your Mac user password and click the Always Allow button to establish a VPN connection. If this step is not done properly, your VPN connection will not be established.


This is what it looks like when you have successfully connected to your preferred ProtonVPN server. You can see the server load and the currently used internet bandwidth speed.

Once you get the notification that you are successfully connected to the VPN application for Mac, the internet connection on your device is secured through the ProtonVPN servers, and you can use the internet while your privacy and security are preserved!

Related articles:

ProtonVPN macOS application issues

ProtonVPN Windows application installation and features

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57 comments

  1. kappa

    Is it possible to change the ports used or anything, I’m unable to connect to ProtonVPN when using the w-lan at school?

  2. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. Please try changing the protocol itself , for example, if using windows application, go in to the settings and find TCP protocol, try using that instead. If that does not help, try setting up a IKEv2 connection method. Since you have not disclosed enough information, you can find appropriate guides in our help center.

  3. CBM

    I was trying to access a health and nutrition site in Germany and was blocked immediately. The page message said there was suspicious activity coming from my computer. It even revealed my actual IP address, which was doing by a company called “Cloud Share.” As soon as I turned off ProtonVPN (I was using the TOR feature) and opted to use the VPN extension I had installed earlier on Firefox, I was able to easily access the site. Apparently, various places can detect when traffic is coming from the TOR network and so block it instantly. But just using ProtonVPN in “standard ” mode got me everywhere I wanted to go.

  4. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello, TOR nodes are not unknown sources of IP addresses and they can be used from many users at the same time causing higher traffic even than a VPN IP address thus websites flagging the IP`s. But thanks for letting us and the other customers know!

  5. Bey

    Hi, I just wanted to report that the kill switch feature still does not work consistently.
    ProtonVPN Ver. 1.2.5. High Sierra 10.13.6.

  6. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Bay, please contact our cusstomer support team as we would like to investigate what seems to be causing the inconsistency issues. https://protonvpn.com/support-form

  7. Karen Key

    I went through this whole process for my Mac book and all seemed fine -when I left my screen and returned later I had a popup asking to access my keychain, which I allowed, but then got a popup asking for my credentials, and I had no idea what that was about, nor could I even get past that popup to get to my keychain to try to find any login credentials. I also had no internet connect as ProtonVPN kept trying to connect – I tried to disconnect, and that didn’t help. I finally dragged the ProtonVPN app to the trash, emptied it, and forced my Mac book to shut down, then restarted. That worked, but of course I no longer am using ProtonVPN, which I’m paying for along with an upgraded email account. I’ve emailed back and forth with your support team and am not getting any help. I was referred back to the video to show me how to do what I’d already done – that hadn’t worked. This is very frustrating. I believe in what ProtonMail an ProtonVPN are all about – the secure encryption, the business model – and chose to upgrade and pay because I believe this is the right business model to make privacy possible and accessible. Yet I’m having nothing but a frustrating experience thus far. I don’t want to give up – but I need a human being to assist me. Please advise how I can get help getting set up. I’ve paid for a whole year but am now wondering if I made a mistake – not because I don’t believe in what you’re doing but because I need – as I’ve said from first contact – assistance in getting all this set up properly. I am a non digital native – 57 – and also an advocate for humane technology. Please let me know how we can make this work.

  8. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Keren, we can see that you did not contact our customer support team yet. The best place to solve issues related to the software is by doing so and we would appreciate if you could drop as a line using this form. It seems to be a small issue that is not hard to fix, so our agents will do their best to do so. https://protonvpn.com/support-form

  9. Kim

    Karen, I could have written this post myself. I’m 56, and have joined as a protest and support for this service. I really want it to work. Although I haven’t been through the identical process as you have, mine is similar in frustration. Email was easy, VPN so far impossible. The terms are not explained after downloading the app, there are seemingly several ways of doing everything but none have worked so far. I have four devices to use the service with; so far I’ve only attempted one. Hours of frustration. I’m interested to know if you eventually got satisfactory service and support, and are off and running.

  10. abe

    If my running system is OSX version 10.10.5, is it hopeless to use this vpn service?

  11. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Abe, you can use tunnelblick with your current macOS version and our server configurations. https://protonvpn.com/support/mac-vpn-setup/

  12. Alfred

    within the instructions for setting up ProtonVPN it would be helpful to new users such as myself, if we were made aware of the kill switch so that access to the computer when asleep was lessened when the VPN disconnected itself. Also given another comment on here, if new customers were made aware of the fact that the VPN ‘had’ to be turned off to access some webpages, prior to purchase. The latter was a large part of the reason that I left NordVPN and came to Proton. Though I have to say, ProtonVPN seems to be working with far less glitches. That’s a Plus.

  13. Anne

    Hi, I’ve just set up and is working. I’ve selected UK as my country but when I try to use the BBC iPlayer it won’t let me as it says I am not in the UK. When I check the help section it says:
    “Using a VPN or proxy? Try disabling it.
    If you are using a VPN or proxy service and are in the UK, try disabling it to see if that helps. If we detect that you might be using a VPN, you’ll be unable to play programmes. This is because we need to be confident you’re in the UK, and if you’re using a VPN or proxy, we can’t detect reliably where you are.
    If you’re able to supply details of your VPN provider we might be able to contact them in future on your behalf to see if we can find a solution to this problem. If so, we might at that point be able to allow you to play programmes while still using your VPN.”
    My main reason for getting your VPN was to use BBC iPlayer. Is there anything I can do?
    Thanks

  14. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Anne, for now we do not officially support BBC iPlayer since its really technically hard to allow its secure streaming.

  15. code janitor

    Hi,
    I have a plus subscription; I really need to use it on a machine running El Capitan. Since you do not support this version, is there a way to configure a different client, like Tunnelblick, for use with my plan?

  16. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello! Yes, tunnelblick is the right way to go in your case. Here is the guide: https://protonvpn.com/support/mac-vpn-setup/

  17. Gareth

    Hi, I had everything working perfectly and then had to change my password.
    Now I can not get the Mac application client to connect. The pop up window (with the triangle icon) displays “Not connected to the Internet” in red. However I am connected to the internet.
    I do have another icon in the menu bar that displays a connection to the Proton VPN and uses the OpenVPN/IKEv2 Password for log in. Can you help me to get the client to work again.
    Regards,

  18. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Gareth. It would be the best that you reinstall the mac application completely by using some sort of cleaning app like this: https://freemacsoft.net/appcleaner/ and then install it gain. Something seems to be corrupted on your system.

  19. Tom

    Hi, I have tried to install the osx proton vpn client, but I can’t open it, once installed. What should I do ?

  20. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Tom, Do you get any error message when trying to do so? Also, what application version did you install? Please let our customer support team know all of these details. https://protonvpn.com/support-form

  21. tom

    I use version 1.2.3 and osx version is 10.13.4.
    I don’t get any error, it does nothing, when I try to open it.

  22. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Tom, would you mind contacting our customer support team, we need a detailed investigation on what could be causing this. https://protonvpn.com/support-form

  23. MT

    Are there any instructions on how to uninstall the MacOS VPN application from the computer?

  24. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. Simply uninstalling the app takes a procedure like this: click and drag on the ProtonVPN application icon and move it in to the Trash bin. Then clear it from the trash bin and the application will be uninstalled.

  25. horwc

    how to delete?

  26. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. If you are inquiring on how to delete the ProtonVPN application for macOS, just simply drag and drop the application icon in to the trash bin.

  27. Shawn

    Never mind, saw my answer down in the page in Rigor’s question. So I assume I have to download the Mac version, but does this affect my subscription? I’m still in the middle of my year-long plan, thanks.

  28. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. Do You mean downloading mac application and using it? No, nothing but time can affect your subscription.

  29. Rob

    Is there any real reason it requires 10.12? If other VPN clients can run on macOS version prior to 10.12, so could ProtonVPN.

  30. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Rob, El capitan is not compatible with new development frameworks which were used while developing our app.

  31. Max

    Hey ProtonVPN-Team,

    could you please explain to me why exactly you need my password keychain. The fact, that you need it to establish a VPN Network is making me feel kind of nervous.

    Best wishes,
    Max

  32. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Max, Our macOS application requires that in order to be able to access and control your network settings. Without this key-chain password our application will have no use and you will not be able to connect to any vpn server while using it.

  33. Thomas Anderson

    Same here. Wonder why this is.
    I tried to skip these steps, and got a VERY annoying sequence of nag screens.
    It is virutaly impossible to decline (and make up your mind for a while, nor configure the app).
    My wi-fi connection was also blocked, until I accecpted, which is… well, uncacceptable.
    Any answers, ProtonTeam ?
    thx

  34. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. You cannot skip the neagent keychain windows otherwise you will face issues with application and VPN functionality. That is mandatory and will always be for any VPN application that is based on IKEv2 protocol. So since you are facing these issues, we suggest that you reinstall the application completely using software like mac app cleaner – https://freemacsoft.net/appcleaner/

  35. Galini

    I have done all of the steps above and then opened Chrome to connect and there is no connection!! I am trying to download a document from my email that required VPN and this is very difficult.

  36. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Galini, Did you connect using our application and did it showed connected? Also, how do you check the connection and are you sure that any vpn can download that file and not a specific IP having client?

  37. Donna

    I’m relatively new to VPN. What is the difference between UDP and TCP, and which would you recommend? I’m a Mac and iOS user.

  38. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Donna, To be short there is no difference in security. The only difference is how it handles the packets of the internet. UDP is usually faster for most of our customers, since it just pushes the packets all together, but it can be unstable by doing that. TCP is more stable, since it lines the packets up in to the stream but by doing this, it provides more ping and slightly slower connection. Those are the main differences. 🙂

  39. Adam

    Hi, I have a feature request. I was on holidays, toke some pictures with my phone. It automatically backups to my home server when wifi in range. On site there was an open wifi hotspot, obviously, I started ProtonVPN to carry the backup. During this time, my phone lost the wifi signal and carried out the backup, I guess, because it didn’t know it’s not on the wifi anymore. It used all my data allowance in a blink of an eye. Further analysis, I found some applications are more active in the background when I’m on ProtonVPN but not on wifi. Is there any way to ‘mimic’ the actual connection (either metered on unlimited) on the ProtonVPN to avoid surprises like that in the future?

  40. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Adam, sorry for this inconvenience but our application will probably have no feature like that. Nonetheless, we will consult with our developers to see if that is a demanding and requested option.

  41. Craig

    I’m in the united states. Does the VPN select random countries? What do we do with the other country choices?

  42. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Craig, The ProtonVPN software connects you to the closest server via quick connect button, but you can change that too to make it random every time within the application settings. All of the countries are there for you and for customers that want a closest server to their location.

  43. Mavericks+

    I mean using Tunnelblick. (Oh, I found it on the page 2)

  44. Mavericks+

    Why not support OSX 10.9 Mavericks users and above? There are many of us who stuck on pre 10.12 OS’s for various reasons.
    And in case you’re not planning to, could you please at least bring back this tutorial “how to setup VPN on a Mac using OpenVPN”. Thanks

  45. BesZhu

    Hi,
    Downloaded ProtonVPN.dmg.
    The disc image is not extracting. I’ve not had a problem with any other programmes. Can you check what’s happening please?

  46. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello. There seem to be no issues with our .dmg file. Have you tried downloading it via different browser? If not please do so.

  47. Roseeglantine

    Hi, I struggled with the same problem, tried a different browser etc. nothing worked.
    What finally did the trick 10 min ago was to download the latest updates and restart my computer.
    Good luck!

  48. Rigor

    do I still need to use tunnelblick?

  49. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Rigor, if you have downloaded and installed our ProtonVPN application on your mac, then no, since that would be using 2 vpn connections at the same time. Use only our software please. 🙂

  50. Lenoard

    Could you please provide the macOS version requirements which this application is dependent upon? i.e. 10.13.4, etc…

  51. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Leonard. Thank you for the notice , we updated the guide with a note and our application supports macOS 10.12 and above.

  52. Rick

    I have been using the macos client for awhile now and I find that I am using a relatively small subset of the available servers, is it possible to create a profile using an arbitrary set of servers which are selected from when auto-connecting?

  53. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Rick, currently you cannot create a set of servers under one profile, but you can create a profile with random server.

  54. Matt

    Is there any way to change the port through the Mac app? I love the GUI but my network is blocking the port currently.
    Thanks!

  55. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Matt, sadly, what ports the connection protocol within the application uses are not changeable. The only thing right now that you can do is to try setting up a different protocol connection to see if that does any better. https://protonvpn.com/support/mac-vpn-setup/

  56. Ola

    Question regarding the kill switch feature.
    I have not yet tried your VPN but I have tried a couple of others. The kill switch feature is a great idea, but it’s a little annoying if I cannot set “trusted” networks or similar. I worry more about protecting myself while using wifis while for example traveling than staying anonymous all the time. Therefore I would like to to see a possibility to block all internet access on wifis not market as trusted (my work and home for example). In my mind this would be a great feature on both computers and mobile devices.
    Is it possible in your mac app? Something that is in your plans?

  57. ProtonVPN Team

    Hello Ola, our current Mac Os application has Killswitch which is controlling mac`s in build connect on demand feature. We do not have any wifi analyzer or identifier to filter the networks as untrusted. Nonetheless, that is a great feature which we might implement in the future.

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