How to Install and Use NordVPN With a DD-WRT Router?

UX/UI Designer at - Adobe

NordVPN is a popular VPN service with a strong track record for security and privacy. This tutorial will show you how to install NordVPN on your router and use it to protect your online activities.

NordVPN is a VPN service that allows users to browse the internet securely. To use NordVPN with a DD-WRT router, you must first install and setup NordVPN on your router. After this, you will be able to connect your device to the DD-WRT router through NordVPN.

It’s safe to assume that many of my readers use WiFi routers that have DD-WRT firmware installed on them. A DD-WRT router has several benefits over a standard WiFi router.

DD-WRT is an open source router firmware that is free and based on UNIX. Users may access tools, utilities, and other functionality via DD-WRT that aren’t accessible while using a router with the original firmware that is pre-installed. Features that are often only seen on routers costing hundreds more are now available in the firmware.

Users may adjust the performance and security of their router using DD-WRT software. Users have the option to limit access to websites as well as the hours that a WiFi signal may be utilized (ideal for families with young children).

You may secure all of the devices that are connected to your DD-WRT router by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN). By doing this, you may also improve your ability to access geo-restricted material, including streaming and gaming websites, which would otherwise be inaccessible to your streaming and gaming devices.

While some VPN service providers limit the router brands and models that may be used with their service, DD-WRT firmware supports a wider range of routers, giving VPN customers more options.

I’ll guide you through setting up and utilizing NordVPN on your DD-WRT router in this tutorial.

A Router’s DD-WRT Installation

Since it is beyond the purview of this post, I won’t be guiding you through the process of installing DD-WRT firmware on your router. Visit the DD-WRT website for details on your router’s compatibility with DD-WRT and directions on how to install the DD-WRT firmware.

There are routers available that already have DD-WRT firmware pre-installed for those of you who don’t want to bother with that. They are offered through Best Buy, Amazon, and many more retailers.

Additionally, DD-WRT routers that are compatible with NordVPN and other VPN services are available from FlashRouters.


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I wholeheartedly endorse NordVPN for users looking for a dependable way to secure and improve their DD-WRT router.

With outstanding DD-WRT compatibility, NordVPN delivers versatile and trustworthy VPN security for all of your connected devices. The DD-WRT router features from NordVPN provide the same trustworthy online security and accessibility to geographically restricted material as their well-known and highly regarded VPN programs for desktop and mobile platforms.

Your online actions are shielded from prying eyes using military-grade 256-bit AES encryption, an automated kill switch, and DNS/IP leak protection on the provider’s connections. Some devices support a new, quicker NordLynx connection protocol that is based on the WireGuard protocol.

To ensure your privacy, the supplier strictly adheres to a no-server-logs policy and accepts cryptocurrencies. Your personal information is kept secure on its own worldwide server network (in a few places).

The NordVPN service provided among of the best download speeds in the business in my most recent VPN connection speed testing. As a result, the service is a great choice for those who use routers since it doesn’t drastically slow down your connection, leaving plenty of room for all of your online activities, including streaming and gaming.

Even in today’s pandemic lockdown environment, you don’t always stay at home. NordVPN has you protected when you’re out and about. For devices running Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire, the service offers high-quality software. Users of the provider’s browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox may safeguard their online activities.

I haven’t often had service difficulties in the whole time I’ve used NordVPN. However, the provider’s 24/7 customer assistance has been there for me when I’ve had problems or queries. Assistance options include a problem ticket tracking system, email help, a searchable support library, and round-the-clock support chat.

NordVPN’s amazing worldwide server network is made possible by its 5,300+ servers located in 60 different countries. In the majority of the world’s areas, such coverage offers access to geo-restricted material.

You’ll discover that NordVPN delivers a fantastic return on investment when you combine it with the affordable extended membership choices. A risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee is provided by NordVPN.

For additional payments, the supplier also provides its NordPass Premium password manager and its NordLocker Premium cloud storage service.

how to configure your DD-WRT router for NordVPN

Don’t worry; these detailed steps for installing NordVPN on your DD-WRT router will have you up and running in no time, protecting and enhancing all of your connected devices. You may first hesitate while reading the following instructions.

Follow the instructions below to configure NordVPN on your DD-WRT router. Note: The default settings for any parameters not specified in this tutorial should be used. (We’re configuring the router to use the OpenVPN protocol to connect.)

1. Use your browser to log into the Administrative Interface of your DD-WRT router.

2.Navigate to Setup -> Basic Setup.

3. Fill up the following information under Network Address Server Settings (DHCP): Static DNS 1 DNS2 Static: Static DNS 3 (default) To use DHCP, use DNSMasq: Checked DNSMasq is used for DNS: Checked DHCP-Authoritative: Checked


4. Save and implement changes.

5.Navigate to Setup -> IPV6. Set IPv6 to Disable. This is a recommended step to make sure your IP address doesn’t leak.


6.Click Apply Settings after clicking Save.

7.Navigate to Services -> VPN.

8.To view the settings required for this setup, under OpenVPN Client, set Start OpenVPN Client to Enable.

9. Make these adjustments:

For the sake of this tutorial, the server IP and name are “,” but you should connect to one of the servers listed below. The server hostname is located just under the server title.

10.Download the OpenVPN UDP or TCP configuration file from the website I referred to in step 9 by clicking the “Show available protocols” option on that page. (UDP is quicker since it doesn’t check for errors. Although a little slower than UDP, TCP inspects packets for faults. Most individuals will discover that UDP functions flawlessly. However, switch to TCP if you have reliability problems with UDP.)


11. Type the information below into the DD-WRT dashboard: Port: 1194 (or 443 for the TCP protocol) TUN, a tunneling device UDP Tunnel Protocol (or TCP) Encryption the AES-256-CBC cipher SHA-512 is the hash algorithm. User ID Authentication: Activate Username and Password: Your NordVPN login information Initial Data Cipher: Unset Unset second data cipher Unset third data cipher


12. To get your NordVPN service credentials, go to the NordVPN website, log in, and copy the credentials from the Service credentials section of the Nord Account dashboard by clicking the Copy icons to the right of that section.


13. Advanced Choices: On (this will enable the additional options in the next step).

None for TLS Cipher 14. LZO Condensation: Off NAT: Allow


15.If the Username and Password fields are missing, go to Administration -> Commands and enter this code:

echo “YOURUSERNAME YOURPASSWORD” > /tmp/openvpncl/user.conf /usr/bin/killall openvpn /usr/sbin/openvpn –config /tmp/openvpncl/openvpn.conf –route-up /tmp/openvpncl/ –down-pre /tmp/openvpncl/ –daemon

(Insert the appropriate NordVPN service login credentials for YOURUSERNAME and YOURPASSWORD. After selecting “Save Startup,” go back to the previous VPN tab.)

16. Type the following instructions in the Additional Config box, or copy and paste them: Remote-random remote-cert-tls server Persist-key 1450 Nobind tun-mtu 1500 Persist-key Persist-tun 32 (#Delete “#” in the line below if your router does not have credentials fields.) Ping-timer-rem reneg-sec 0 #log /tmp/vpn.log #auth-user-pass /tmp/openvpncl/user.conf

17. Open the OpenVPN UDP or TCP configuration file in any text editor that you downloaded in step 10.

18.When you open the .ovpn file of the server you chose (in this case, “”) in a text editor, you should see the <ca> part of the file. Do NOT copy the <ca> and </ca> tags.

19. Enter its content in the CA Cert Make careful you paste the complete content, including the lines that begin and end the certificate.

20.Return to the configuration file and scroll down to the <tls-auth> part. Copy the contents of the TLS Key.

Insert the information into the TLS Auth Key at step 21. Make sure the —-BEGIN OpenVPN Static key V1—- and —-END OpenVPN Static key V1—- lines are copied in with the rest of the content.

22. Click Save and then Apply Settings after inputting the data.

23.To verify that the VPN is working, navigate to Status > Under “State,” you should see the message “Client: CONNECTED SUCCESS”.


Optional kill switch setup (for advanced users): To create a kill switch, go to Administration > Commands and enter this script: WAN_IF=`nvram get wan_iface` iptables -I FORWARD -i br0 -o $WAN_IF -j REJECT –reject-with icmp-host-prohibited

the following command: iptables -I FORWARD -i br0 -p tcp -o $WAN IF -j REJECT -reject-with tcp-reset

iptables -I FORWARD -i br0 -p udp -o $WAN IF -j REJECT

24.Select Save Firewall, then go to Administration -> Management -> Reboot router.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Connecting to a VPN Through Your DD-WRT Router


Constant Defense

You get always-on safety for your internet connection by setting up and utilizing a VPN with your DD-WRT router.

If you’re anything like me, you sometimes fail to turn on the VPN protection for the device you’re using. This implies that any of my online actions, such as streaming, file sharing, and other mischief, are subject to monitoring.

Your DD-WRT router can prevent all of your devices from having their internet connection tracked by installing and running a VPN continuously.

All of Your Connected Devices Are Safe

Any device that connects to your DD-WRT router while it is secured by a VPN gets automatic VPN protection. This safeguards even internet-connected appliances like your gaming console, streaming box, smart TV, and refrigerator that can’t run a VPN software.

Some routers provide admins the ability to decide which software will utilize the secure VPN tunnel and which programs will access the public internet. (However, keep in mind that the administrator may not always be accessible to turn on a device’s connection.)


Potentially: Higher Upfront Cost

Your present router could not be DD-WRT compatible or it might be one that your Internet service provider gave you and they won’t let you update it with DD-WRT software. You’ll need to buy a DD-WRT router for this.

Unfortunately, DD-WRT compatible routers tend to be a little on the pricey side. Even while some cheaper routers can run DD-WRT, they may not have enough power to do so effectively. (Ask your preferred router manufacturer if they sell reconditioned routers; they may significantly reduce the price of a router.)

Additionally, be aware that certain VPN providers may charge you more if you use a DD-WRT router with their services. (However, NordVPN offers DD-WRT compatibility without additional charge.)

The Speed Of Your Connection Will Reduce

You’ll probably notice that your connection speeds have decreased from when you’re utilizing an unsecured connection while using a VPN on your computer, mobile device, or other connected device.

This is because your connection is being sent via a VPN server in a different part of the world, which slows down the encryption process.

The speed of your connection will also drop down if you use a VPN on your DD-WRT router. This is because using a VPN program on your router, which almost typically has a weaker CPU than your computer or mobile device, adds overhead.

Additionally, because your router frequently connects numerous devices, each one must share the router’s internet connection. Your connection speeds will decrease as you add more connected devices.

Can I Use My DD-WRT Router With a Free VPN?

You shouldn’t attempt to utilize a free VPN with your DD-WRT router for a variety of reasons (or any of your other devices, for that matter).

The majority of free VPN services are often incompatible with routers and only work with a small number of device platforms.

Additionally, the majority of free VPNs severely limit your connection speeds and impose daily or monthly data use limits. Your connection rates will sluggish when many devices are connected at once, and you’ll quickly exhaust your data allotment.

Using a free VPN puts your privacy at danger as well. Even a free VPN service has to generate revenue, and many accomplish this by tracking the internet activity of its customers and selling that data to advertising and other snoops.

Other free VPNs have been discovered introducing tracking cookies and intrusive advertisements into users’ browser sessions. Even when you aren’t connected to the service, the cookies continue to follow you.

In conclusion

As we’ve seen, there are some definite Advantages to installing a VPN, like NordVPN, on your DD-WRT router. While there are also Disadvantages, I feel that the always-on VPN All of Your Connected Devices Are Safe outweighs the minimal Disadvantages.

Through a single access point, router-based VPN security provides complete full-time VPN protection and augmentation for all of your connected devices. With this technique, no device setting is necessary and the VPN is instantly available to any device that connects to your DD-WRT-based WiFi router.

Top-notch DD-WRT features are offered by NordVPN. The supplier provides complete internet protection and privacy, quick connections from a strong international server network, and first-rate customer service.

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