How to Hide My IP in Ubuntu

by Jeff Grundy

If you're concerned about your online privacy, using a virtual private network can help mask your IP address and identity from most people on the Internet. While there are many VPN programs available to Mac and Windows users, few options exist for those who use Ubuntu Linux. Nevertheless, Ubuntu offers a free download that lets you start using a VPN within a few minutes.

1

Ensure that you have an active Internet connection. Press "Ctrl-Alt-T" to open a new Terminal window and then enter "sudo apt-get install network-manager-openvpn openvpn" (without quotes here and throughout) at the prompt. Wait a few minutes for Ubuntu to download and install the OpenVPN package from the repository.

2

Type "sudo restart network-manager" to restart the Ubuntu Network Manager. Close the Terminal window.

3

Download the OpenVPN configuration files for your VPN account from the provider website if you have not already done so. Save the configuration files to a folder of your choice.

4

Click the "Network Manager" icon on the menu bar -- the one with the up and down arrows -- and then select "VPN Connections."

5

Click the "Add" button in the Network Connections window. Select "OpenVPN" in the Choose a Connection Type drop-down list and then click "Create." A new Editing Provider Name OpenVPN window opens. Note that the "Provider Name" value should reflect the name of the service provider.

6

Click the "VPN" tab, enter the VPN server URL provided by the service provider in the "Gateway" field and select "Password" in the Type drop-down list under the Authentication header.

7

Click the "folder" icon in the "CA Certificate" field and then browse to the configuration file from the provider that ends with the .CRT extension. Double-click the .CRT file to insert its file name in the CA Certificate field.

8

Click the "Advanced" button and then click the "General" tab in the OpenVPN Advanced Options window. Enable the "Use LZO Data Compression" option, click "OK" and then click "Save" in the Editing Provider Name OpenVPN window to complete the VPN setup and exit the configuration settings.

9

Click the "Network Manager" icon on the menu bar, select "VPN Connections" and then click the name of your VPN service provider in the slide-out menu. Wait a few seconds for Ubuntu to connect to the VPN service, verify your login credentials and secure the connection.

Tip

  • check After you connect to the VPN, verify that the service is masking your true IP address. To do this, first launch your Web browser and navigate to a site that reveals your public IP address to verify that your current IP address reflects the one assigned by the VPN server. You can check your current IP address at sites such as WhatIsMyIPAddress.com and WhatIsMyIP.com. Additionally, you can check your IP address by entering "what is my IP address" into a Google search box and pressing "Enter."

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About the Author

Jeff Grundy has been writing computer-related articles and tutorials since 1995. Since that time, Grundy has written many guides to using various applications that are published on numerous how-to and tutorial sites. Born and raised in South Georgia, Grundy holds a Master of Science degree in mathematics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Patrick Lux/Getty Images News/Getty Images