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Improving Speed & Combating Latency - News / Announcements - PIA Support Portal

Aug 25 2020

Improving Speed & Combating Latency

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Are you running into sluggish speeds while your VPN is enabled? Are you interested in troubleshooting without direct human contact? Small tweaks within your VPN client can be made to improve the speeds you are experiencing while using our service! 

 Ensure the Use of the Next Generation Network

Although this option may be pre-enabled within your client, it's best to double check that it's enabled as it may be difficult to decipher our Gen4 (Next Generation Network) servers from our current (Legacy) server options. Our Gen4 servers, which are operating on an upgraded infrastructure which holds 10 times the bandwidth of our previous server options, can be enabled within your clients settings or by downloading a configuration file from our website for OpenVPN setups.

Changing the Protocol 

While using the VPN client, you will find that there are two Protocols your VPN has the ability to connect over, and three if you are on iOS. As some users have the ability to connect over IPSec(IKEv2), OpenVPN, and Wireguard, we recommend getting familiar with these options and find what works best for you. Our OpenVPN option allows you to choose the socket type (TCP or UDP) and remote port your VPN is connecting over. As the TCP socket is more reliable, you may find better speeds connecting over UDP if OpenVPN is the route for you.


We has chosen to team up with Wireguard to offer this protocol as an option for our users! Everything regarding Wireguard is pre-configured, so it's set up and ready to go without needing extra “know-how”. We recommend this protocol to achieve the best speeds while connected to the PIA client. If you are interested in how Wiregaurd works, please reference the following article here.

 Setting your DNS

Using the proper DNS server is vital to your browsing speed and your online privacy. We currently offer four DNS options within our client which include, PIA's DNS, the Built-In Resolver, the Use of an Existing DNS and the Set Custom DNS option. As we do suggest cycling through these options, using PIA's DNS is the best option for a balance of speed and anonymity while browsing the web. You may be able to set a custom DNS server that performs better then our DNS but we are unable to provide any guarantees regarding third-party DNS.

Enabling Use Small Packets

Enabling the Use Small Packets option within your clients settings is a great way to combat latency issues you may see while connected to a VPN server. Latency issues tend to occur when the data being transmitted through the network interface is large or exceeds the MTU value. The Use Small Packets option combats this issue by forcing the VPN tunnel to report the data as smaller than it actually is. 

General Understanding 

In some cases, you may experience slow speed because the speed being offered by your ISP isn't the greatest. If your network speed is capped at 2mbps, a VPN cannot give you 10mbps. By design, adding a VPN tunnel around your Network will somewhat decrease the speeds you are seeing. With that being said, connecting to a server location that is geographically close to where you are located will provide better speeds then one that is halfway across the globe, or flat earth; whichever you prefer. At any time, if you are curious about any of these steps or would like direct assistance, please feel free to reach out to us through our Helpdesk!