Given optimal conditions, your VPN speed might nearly reach the speed of your physical Internet connection. However, certain additional factors can also have a negative impact.
What impacts speed ?
If your physical Internet connection is limited to e.g. 768 kBit/s, then your VPN speed can't be any faster.
Problems related to the infrastructure of the Internet. When connecting to a foreign VPN server, an issue with the network links between you and this server can cause performance problems. This may be congestion caused by a failure of an undersea Internet cable or maintenance by your ISP's upstream network provider.
- ISP throttling. Some providers will intentionally throttle VPN connections or throttle your entire connection if you are using a lot of bandwidth. This degrades your VPN speed as your entire connection is now running slower.
Your Internet service provider's connection speed. In most cases, the speed of your VPN connection is limited by the overall amount of data that your ISP can process and the speed at which it can carry it over its network..
CyberGhost's configuration is not compatible with your Internet connection (different packet sizes). If that's the case, there should be the same problem on all servers and at all times.
- The number of people using the VPN server.
- The VPN tunneling protocol you are using.
What can I do to improve my speed ?
- Restart your device.
- Switch the VPN server to another one that is located closer to your current location.
- Change your Protocol Settings
- Open the Settings menu and switch to WireGuard in the VPN protocol selection.
- Change to a server with a lower load percentage.
- Temporarily disable your antivirus or firewall.
- Close P2P-based programs (generally software downloads) running in the background.
- Refresh your local network
1. Remove the power cables from the modem and router.
2. After waiting 30 seconds, connect the modem to the router.
3. After waiting 30 seconds, plug in the router.
4. Wait 30 seconds, it is now refreshed.
- Install the latest version of CyberGhost VPN
- Try another connection option on your device. Click here for tutorials on the different connection methods.
Furthermore, the speed of the internet can be affected directly by the state of your hardware and firmware, so we recommend also :
- Use an Ethernet cable instead of Wi-Fi.
- Obsolete routers can cause problems with your Wi-Fi connectivity and slow down your Internet speed. Check the router itself. You will see numbers like these :
11ac - operates according to the latest standards;
11n - a bit older, but still functional;
11g - fairly outdated, so it's probably time to consider replacing it';
- Up-to-date drivers can also influence the speed; check for the latest updates for your Ethernet adapter, motherboard chipset, and network drivers, BIOS updates, etc.
The 'VPN Process'
When using a VPN connection, all data is divided into packets before being sent. These data packets are then encrypted with AES-256 bit. This is a complex and computationally intensive step. After the encryption, more control information is set before the data (Header), so due to additional information, every packet is bigger as it originally was. This so-called “Overhead” is proportionally bigger, the more small packages are sent since the control information has a fixed size regardless of the size of the original packets. For example, at CyberGhost (via OpenVPN) this takes approximately 50 bytes per packet (it varies depending on the setting for encryption, authentication, etc.).
For example, a 1 MB file which is sent into 874 packets has 874*50 Byte additional data (Overhead), which must be transmitted, so 43700 Byte. This means 5%. If 1 MB file is sent into 2097 packets, then 2097*50 Byte additional data (Overhead) must be transmitted, so 123723 Byte. This means approx. 12% Overhead.
The size of the data packets depends among others on the following aspects: over which servers are these sent and which packets size does the remote station accepts (MTU).
At the measurement of speed tests with an active VPN connection is measured only how many user data can be transmitted over a period of time, therefore the above-mentioned Overhead is not measured.
So when using a VPN, more data must be transmitted. Through the encryption, this lasts even longer, depending on the processor load of the PC. When you are surfing on the Internet over a CyberGhost server, you are not the only one using this, which means that this server must receive a lot of packets, to encrypt/decrypt and forward.
A server on which are connected for example 50 persons and each of them wants to download with 50 Mbit/s, must be able to handle at least 2,4 Gbit/s user data. But the TCP/IP protocol used on the Internet adds another “Overhead”, so in practice, the measurements have shown that a 1 Gbit fastened server reaches approx. 580 Mbit/s net bandwidth (user data bandwidth). Therefore in order to transmit 2,4 Gbit/s user data, the server must be equipped with a 5 Gbit connection. Such servers are hardly available, usually the regular servers offer only 1 Gbit connections. If we would decrease too much the number of simultaneous users per server, this would no longer be financially viable on one hand, and on the other hand, the anonymity level would have to suffer.