ExpressVPN stuck on connecting? Here’s a brief resolution

Aleksandar Ognjanovic
by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Troubleshooting Expert
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  • Many users have trouble connecting to ExpressVPN especially when using the Windows client.
  • Checking the Internet connection or choosing another protocol are both recommended fixes.
  • For more helpful solutions as the ones below, you can visit our ExpressVPN section.
  • Quickly bookmark our VPN Guides Hub for those times when you need a second opinion.
ExpressVPN stuck issues

ExpressVPN is one of the leaders in the expanding niche of VPN solutions. However, as the case has shown so many times, programs that are dependent on too many various factors, often bump into a problem.

One of the repeating issues that plagued numerous users is the inability to connect to a remote VPN server of your choice. The connection bar just stops in the middle of the process and it gets stuck.

In order to fix this, we offer a few possible solutions below. So, if ExpressVPN gets stuck with every new try, make sure to check them out.

How can I fix ExpressVPN stuck while connecting?

  1. Check the Internet connection
  2. Use a reliable VPN alternative with no connection failures
  3. Run application as admin
  4. Change the protocol
  5. Disable antivirus and firewall temporarily
  6. Contact the support team

1. Check the Internet connection

  1. Run the Windows Troubleshooter. Right-click on the Wireless or LAN icon in the notification area and click on Troubleshoot problems.
  2. If you’re using the Wireless connection, try using the wired connection instead.
  3. Restart your PC and router/modem.
  4. Reset modem/router settings to default values.
  5. Update the router’s/modem’s firmware.

First things first. Probably the most obvious thing you’ll need to check in order to unstuck ExpressVPN is the connection.

Make sure that your PC is able to connect to the Internet without ExpressVPN. If you’re unable to do so, follow the above instructions in order to repair the connection.

On the other hand, if you’re able to connect to the Internet but the problem solely applies to ExpressVPN, make sure to continue with the steps below.

2. Use a reliable VPN alternative with no connection failures

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Private Internet Access (PIA) is not only one of the oldest virtual private network providers on the market but also one of the best choices when it comes to connection stability.

PIA offers client applications for the mainstream operating systems. It’s up to you to grab any of these apps since you’ll want to protect as many devices as you’re allowed on a single account.

Being able to connect from 10 different gadgets is quite a major advantage. After all, with most popular VPN clients, you can only connect using five or seven at most.

No less important, this Kape Technologies VPN solution is also remarkably inexpensive when compared to other VPN providers around. It’s only up to you to try it out.

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3. Run application as admin

  1. Right-click on the ExpressVPN desktop shortcut and open Properties.
  2. Open Compatibility tab.
  3. Check the Run this program as an administrator box and confirm changes.

In order to avoid possible limitations imposed by Windows, you should run ExpressVPN desktop client with administrative permissions.

This should bypass the blockage and enable you to connect to dedicated servers you’ve chosen.

This seems to be the case with various third-party programs that are fairly limited or even blocked by Windows due to quite strict UAC (User Account Control) settings.

If you’re not sure how to run the ExpressVPN as admin in Windows 10, make sure to check the instructions above.

4. Change the protocol and server

  1. Open ExpressVPN.
  2. Click on the 3-line menu and open Options.
  3. Select the Protocol tab.
  4. Choose one of the 5 protocols and confirm vpn stuck on connecting
  5. Try to connect again.

There are various protocols ExpressVPN utilizes in order to connect to a VPN server. These protocols are basically different methods and they differ in speed and security traits.

By default, ExpressVPN selects active protocol automatically, but that’s not always the most reliable way.

So, in order to fix the halt while connecting to a remote VPN server, make sure to switch between protocols manually. One of them might just work.

In addition, you’ll probably want to shift between the available servers until you reach the one that works. Due to heavy load, certain servers might be down or a lot slower than intended.

5. Disable antivirus and firewall temporarily

  1. Right-click on the antivirus icon in the notification bar and disable Real-time protection.
  2. In the Windows Search bar, type Firewall and open Windows Firewall.
  3. Click on the Turn Windows Firewall on or vpn stuck on connecting
  4. Disable Windows Firewall for both Public and Private vpn stuck on connecting
  5. Confirm changes and run ExpressVPN again.

If there’s one thing that keeps messing up various VPN and proxy solutions, that’s the third-party antivirus. Moreover, besides the antivirus, we can’t overlook the Windows Firewall.

Both security assets are strict towards the VPN solutions and can cause a halt within the program. So, you have two options here:

  • To temporarily disable antivirus and firewall.
  • To manually add exceptions for ExpressVPN.

Either way, that should eliminate stall and you should be able to continue with the seamless use. If you decide to disable antivirus and firewall temporarily, follow these steps:

On the other hand, you can create an exception within the antivirus and Windows Firewall, respectively. That way, security software won’t suppress the ExpressVPN.

Here we explained how to create an exception in various antivirus solutions, so make sure to check it out for better insight.

6. Contact the support team

Finally, if none of the aforementioned solutions worked for you, make sure to contact the support team that’s available 24/7 through the live chat.

ExpressVPN is marketed and advertised as a great VPN with premium support. So, make sure to use your given right as a customer and find out about the problem resolution vpn stuck on connecting

That should do it. In case you have an alternative solution or questions regarding the ones we already posted, make sure to tell us in the comments section below.

Moreover, take a closer look at some of the most common VPN errors and their solutions for quick tips like the ones above.

FAQ: Learn more about ExpressVPN

  • Why is my ExpressVPN not connecting?

The protocol that you currently using, the antivirus, and the Internet connection itself may all affect the way ExpressVPN connects. These quick solutions can easily correct that.

  • How do I know if Express VPN is working?

To make sure the VPN is working as it should, don’t hesitate to connect to ExpressVPN and check your IP address. You have no reason to worry about if it is secured.

  • Is ExpressVPN legal?

Yes, it is legal. However, do keep in mind that P2P torrenting itself is illegal in a few countries, so make sure you know the laws in your country by heart.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in February 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in May 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.