According to multiple reports, it seems that China is cracking down on ProtonVPN recently and blocking their domain. This little guide shows how to circumvent that block and still be able to connect to your ProtonVPN.
I’m not from China which means I can’t confirm that this ‘trick’ will work or iof there not able to block it in the near future. But I asked the ProtonVPN Team and they confirmed to me that they propose the same thing to their customers in china who have issues and it works most of the time.
This guide is only necessary when you use the Free or Secure-Core servers. If you download server specific configuration files provided from here.
What is Great Firewall doing?
Basically, what China does is blocking the protonvpn.com domain on a DNS level. Therefore, exchanging the domain with the IP is all that’s needed.
- Download a ProtonVPN OpenVPN configuration file corresponding to the server you like to use. The files are here. As protonvpn.com is blocked I would suggest accessing it through the Tor network. Ensure to download the TCP configuration file which ProtonVPN has to offer.
- Open the .ovpn file with any text editor and search for the line
remote xxx.protonvpn.com 443and copy the domain.
- Go to http://lookingglass.level3.net and click on “Ping from Level 3 sites”. Then paste the domain in the “Ping to” field and click submit.
- When it’s done loading, copy the IP address that’s shown:
- Replace the domain with the IP address in the .ovpn file as shown:
Save it, then use your preferred OpenVPN client to connect with the new profile. Now the connection should work.
Note: This is currently not possible with the native ProtonVPN windows client and Android App. A client that uses .ovpn files is required. Just use the official OpenVPN client and for Android the Arne Schabe OpenVPN app.