How to fix Chrome VPN issues with these 6 steps

Aleksandar Ognjanovic
by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
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A VPN is only as useful as it can work in a seamless manner with your browser of choice. For some users, that seems to be the problem since they’re unable to use both Chrome and the VPN of choice. Chrome is indeed a memory hog but it’s still far and beyond the most used browser out there. So, the possible effects of VPN incompatibility can deem it completely redundant.

Now, since the issues are, arguably, instigated by VPN itself, it’ll be hard to cover hundreds of them in one article. Therefore, we offer a general troubleshooting to avoid all other possible accomplices in the crime. For the rest, the premium support of given VPN should provide a solution. So, make sure to check the steps below before you send a ticket to VPN.

How to address common VPN issues in Google Chrome

  1. Check the connection
  2. Disable add-ons
  3. Disable Proxy
  4. Switch servers
  5. Update Chrome
  6. Turn off antivirus/firewall

1. Check the connection

First things first. Let’s check the connection prior to moving to additional steps. The best way to identify the cause of the problem is to try an alternative browser or disable VPN and check how the connection works without it. If you’re still stuck with status quo in regards to connectivity, make sure to check the steps we provided below:

  • Restart your router and/or modem.
  • Use wired connection instead of the Wi-Fi.
  • Restart the PC.
  • Restart Chrome to default values:
    1. Open Chrome.
    2. Click on the 3-dot menu in the upper right corner and open vpn issues chrome settings
    3. Scroll down and click on Advanced to expand the advanced vpn issues chrome advanced settings
    4. Scroll to the bottom and click on Reset vpn issues reset chrome browser
  • Run the dedicated Windows Troubleshooter:
    1. Press Windows key + I to open vpn issues update & security
    2. Open Update & security.
    3. Select Troubleshoot from the left pane.
    4. Highlight Internet Connections and click on the ”Run the troubleshooter” vpn issues run the internet troubleshooter
  • Reset native IP address:
    1. Type cmd in the Search bar, right-click on Command Prompt and run it as an administrator.
    2. In the command line, copy and paste the following lines and press Enter after each:
      • netsh winsock reset
      • netsh int ip reset
      • ipconfig /release
      • ipconfig /renew
    3. Close the elevated command line and try again.
  • Update modem’s/router’s firmware.
  • Check ethernet and Wi-Fi drivers.

On the other hand, if everything functions well with Chrome/VPN combination being an exception, make sure to continue with the steps below.

2. Disable add-ons

One of the best parts of Google Chrome lies in add-ons (extensions) that make the usage so much better. However, certain add-ons can invoke issues, especially when colliding with VPN solutions. For that matter, we advise you to temporarily disable all add-ons you use, with focus on the ones that are related to proxy or protection.

If you’re not sure how to do it, make sure to follow these instructions closely:

  1. Open Chrome.
  2. Click on the 3-dot menu and then More tools > vpn issues chrome extensions
  3. Disable all extensions individually and restart vpn issues disable Chrome extensions

If Chrome is still unable to connect, make sure to move on to the alternative steps. In addition, you can clear the cache. Sometimes the piles of the cache can affect overall usability. This might not be the exception. Here’s how to clear cache in Chrome:

  1. Open Chrome.
  2. Press Ctrl + Shift + Delete to open the ”Clear browsing data” dialog box.
  3. Select Advanced.
  4. Under Time range, select All time.
  5. Uncheck (or don’t, it’s your choice) other boxes but keep checked Cached images and vpn issues clear chrome browsing data
  6. Click on Clear data.

3. Disable Proxy

While we’re at the possible collisions, it’s worth to mention built-in proxy settings. Those need to be disabled too, in order to avoid further issues and hopefully resolve the problem at hand. If you’re using VPN, there’s no need for proxy whatsoever. Built-in proxy is usually off by default, but it’s worth to check it out, just in case.

Here’s how to check Proxy settings in Windows 10:

  1. Press Windows key + I to open the Settings app.
  2. Select the ”Network & internet” vpn issues network and internet win 10 settings
  3. Click on Proxy at the bottom of the left pane.
  4. Make sure everything is disabled for both manual and automatic vpn issues disable proxy
  5. Exit and try using Chrome in combination with VPN again.

4. Switch servers

Most of the VPN solutions offer at least a dozen different servers on different geo-locations. Now, there’s always the slightest chance that an individual server won’t work or it’s down at the moment. Or that’s too far from you so the latency is ultra-high and the bandwidth suffers.

So, make sure to switch between the servers and look for changes. There’s a small difference between the slow connection and the complete absence of connection. As a side note, you can try to change the encryption protocol, too. It’s an unwritten rule that the more powerful encryption protocol, the slower the connection. With OpenVPN being an exception with well-rounded encryption standards and considerable speeds.

For a better geo-location, we strongly recommend using Cyberghost VPN tool. It covers over 600 servers and over 8 million users worldwide being one of the few who has a good support for their users.

5. Update Chrome

Running the latest version of Chrome is also a good way to keep issues out of your way. That doesn’t include Beta versions since they’re not final works but rather a testing ground for users. In order to obtain the latest public version of Chrome, follow the steps we provided below:

  1. Open Chrome.
  2. Click on the 3-dot menu, then Help > About Google Chrome.
  3. This should automatically update Chrome and you should see the final version installing.
  4. Restart the browser and look for changes.

6.Turn off antivirus/firewall

Finally, as we already noticed in this article, the collab between a VPN solution and a third-party antimalware isn’t always as functional as expected. Most antivirus suits come with the dedicated firewall that tends to block VPN solutions and prevent them from communicating through the PC’s network freely.

Therefore, you can choose to either disable firewall completely while using VPN or to create a firewall exception for the affected VPN. This article should provide you with enough details, you should be able to find the way to create exceptions for all major antivirus solutions.

In addition, make sure to check the Windows-native Windows Firewall and look for exceptions there. We can’t advise you to disable Firewall (both built-in or third-party variation) permanently. However, for the sake of testing and eliminating possible issues, you can turn it off temporarily. If you’re not sure how to do it in Windows 10, these steps should help you:

  1. In the Windows Search bar, type Firewall, and open Allow an app through Windows to speed up vpn connection windows 10 allow an app through windows firewall
  2. Click ”Change settings”.how to speed up vpn connection windows 10 allow another app windows firewall
  3. Choose to ”Allow another app
  4. Browse for VPN in Program Files and add EXE file.
  5. Click ”Add”.how to speed up vpn connection windows 10 add VPN to Windows Firewall exceptions list
  6. Let the VPN communicate through both Public and Private to speed up vpn connection windows 10 check Public and Private networks in Windows Firewall
  7. Click OK to confirm changes.

That should do it. If you’re still unable to resolve your problems, we advise you to contact VPN‘s technical support. In addition, make sure to share alternative solutions or questions with us. The comments section is just below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in December 2017 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.