SOLVED: VPN won’t work with Comcast and XFINITY

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The Net Neutrality repeal and history of issues with monopolized broadband market in the United States kind of made a good reason for users to turn to VPN solutions.

Comcast is one of those providers (AT&T and some local providers) who is frequently criticized for geo-restrictions and throttling the internet speed when users try to use Peer-2-Peer services. However, even though a VPN tool should help you avoid possible obstacles just fine, we need it to work in order to do so.

And, seemingly, some Comcast routers don’t support PPTP protocol, which is commonly used (less encryption, but less latency and faster bandwidth) VPN encryption protocol.

In order to address this, we prepared some common solutions, both recommended by the Comcast’s support and knowledgeable users around the web. If you’re unable to run VPN with the Comcast equipment, make sure to check the steps we provided below.

How to fix VPN issues with Comcast

  1. Update router’s firmware
  2. Change the protocol, change VPN encryption and  switch servers
  3. Make sure you’re using proper VPN

1: Update router’s firmware

As the official source confirmed, a certain router model (Technicolor Wireless Gateway for XFINITY Internet Service) have had issues with PPTP security protocol. The problem is, allegedly, resolved by updating your router’s firmware.

We can’t say with certainty that this indeed was dealt with, as there’s no an abundance of users feedback. However, it’s worth a try and, hopefully, after you update your router’s firmware, the VPN solution should work as intended.

If you were wondering how to update the firmware on Comcast XFINITY router, this is automatically done after restarting your devices. Just wait for some time until upgrades are installed and try connecting via VPN tunnel again.

Also, if by chance, you have your own router, you can use it to bridge the connection, avoiding the possible evasive measures. Any third-party router would work, and the only thing you should do is enabling the Bridge mode in XFINITY router’s settings. In the address bar, type your IP address (Comcast changed private internet subnet to 10.x.x.x from 192.x.x.x), and log in with your credentials. Under the ”Gateway > At a Glance”, enable Bridge mode.

2: Change the protocol, change VPN encryption and  switch servers

There are two protocol suits which are covering the same thing in a different manner. TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) is a standard network and internet communication protocol and there’s also a UDP (User Datagram Protocol): more app-oriented and faster protocol.

A lot of users which were using the latter have had issues with VPN working on Comcast-provided equipment. Therefore, even though it’s seemingly slower, TCP should be your communication protocol of choice. You can configure it in the router settings.

Besides that, we recommend changing two variable options in the VPN itself. Firstly, we recommend changing your encryption protocol to OpenVPN or L2TP/IPsec instead of PPTP. That should be an easy task to perform, as most VPN solutions offer a variety of alternative encryption protocols.

Have in mind that the encryption level is reversely proportional to speeds. Basically: the better the encryption, slower the bandwidth. OpenVPN is in the middle, with both formidable encryption levels and average latency.

Finally, we recommend switching to an alternative server or location or IP address. Namely, even though we’re addressing the Comcast/VPN issue, there’s still the chance that your current server is overcrowded or unstable. Give an alternative a try, and look for improvements.

However, there comes the question of whether to use a premium or a free VPN solution. As most of the free solutions are fairly limited in regards to speed and the numbers of available servers.

3: Make sure you’re using proper VPN

This is quite important. As we already said on various occasions, choosing a proper VPN solution which suits your needs isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Especially, when we take into consideration the fact that all valid solutions are mostly premium. Of course, if you only need to hide your IP address once in a while, going on a spending spree isn’t recommended.

On the other hand, if you want a permanent solution to avoid bandwidth throttling, privacy infringement, and geo-restrictions: you’ll need to invest some funds in the monthly subscription. Before you spend your money on a subscription (most VPN providers offer 30-or-so-day of money-back option in case you’re not satisfied with the service), make sure that it can overcome the ISP blockage, access all geo-restricted content you need (Netflix and Steam are killing out options on daily basis), and do so without speed issues and data limitations.

Comcast-wise, here are the tools we can recommend. Of course, make sure to inform on your own before you choose one solution over the others.

Based on our knowledge, these should grant you everything you need for a modest fee. Also, beyond the obvious advantages of a paid VPN solution, you as a paying customer can rely on 24/7 support. Therefore, they should be able to resolve most of your issues and help you configure the VPN for use in various areas.

That’s a wrap-up. In case you have any questions or suggestions on how to resolve the issues with VPN on Comcast, feel free to tell us in the comments section below. We look forward to hearing from you.

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