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NordVPN not connecting? Here’s how to fix it

NordVPN not connecting featured img

NordVPN is undeniably the best VPN (Virtual Private Network) service currently available. However, that doesn’t mean that it works flawlessly all the time. After all, such complicated and feature-rich software will eventually encounter issues.

But no need to be discouraged if you witness the dreaded “NordVPN not connecting” message. We compiled a list of fixes to remedy this issue and get you back to securely surfing the web.

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Are NordVPN connection issues common?

Whether you’re a long-time customer or just curious about the product, you may begin to wonder if NordVPN connection issues are common. After all, why is there an entire guide about solving such problems if it’s the best VPN on the market? Shouldn’t it work flawlessly?

The fact of the matter is that no VPN will work perfectly all the time, even if you pick one of the top VPN services. For starters, these products have millions of customers with varying device setups. It’s practically impossible for developers to test the software under every circumstance. Naturally, there’s also the slim chance of unintended bugs causing issues.

Luckily, NordVPN provides many opportunities for potential buyers to test out the product on their systems without commitment. Firstly, there’s the 7-day free trial available on the Google Play Store. You’ll need an Android device to claim it, but after that, the app will work on any other device.

After that, you have the generous 30-day money-back guarantee. It allows you to easily get a refund during the first month of your subscription. Combine this with the free trial, and you can test NordVPN risk-free for over a month.

Not sure if NordVPN is worth the hype? Read our NordVPN review to find out about its numerous perks. You’ll learn that it’s an ideal choice for Netflix subscribers and users needing bonus anonymity or cybersecurity.

Try out the top VPN on the market

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How to fix NordVPN connection issues

The problem behind NordVPN (or any other service provider) not working correctly can be challenging to decipher. This difficulty stems from the fact that VPN software is pretty complicated once you dive deeper into the topic. Check out our “What is a VPN?” article to learn more.

Luckily, many of the solutions to NordVPN not working are reasonably straightforward. Plus, you can skip manual troubleshooting by immediately reaching out to customer support specialists. They’re available 24/7 and will swiftly suggest solutions for your specific problem.

On the other hand, learning to fix computer-networking-related issues can be valuable in the modern world. Therefore, we recommend checking all of our suggested solutions even if you’re currently not dealing with NordVPN connectivity issues.

Check internet connection

Firstly, you should check the integrity of your internet connection. The VPN service won’t work properly if your internet keeps disconnecting. The same applies if you’re constantly switching between Wi-Fi and mobile data.

Here are some tips for resolving internet connection issues.

  • Disconnect and reconnect to the current network (Wi-Fi or ethernet)
  • Restart your device
  • Restart your router
  • Ensure all the cables on the router are connected properly

Check NordVPN account status and credentials

The VPN connection won’t establish if your subscription has expired. Thankfully, the app should notify you if your premium status hasn’t been renewed. If it doesn’t, log in to the official NordVPN website and check your subscription status there.

NordVPN SmartPlay step 2

Alternatively, you should double-check your account credentials, especially if you configured NordVPN on a router. Once again, you can do that on NordVPN’s website in the account dashboard. Also, ensure the URL isn’t misspelled. And consider using a password manager like NordPass if you’re having trouble remembering various account credentials.

Connect to a different VPN server

You can suspect a faulty VPN server if NordVPN is still not connecting and the previous parts are in order. Please note that server connectivity issues are uncommon among premium VPNs with thousands of worldwide servers. Thankfully, they’re easy to fix because you simply have to disconnect and try another one.

Check if the correct ports are open

You’ll have trouble establishing a VPN connection if something is blocking the necessary network ports. For NordVPN, you need ports 443 TCP and 1194 UDP to be open. The most common culprits behind blocked ports are routers and firewalls. Therefore, you should check their settings and ensure those ports are open.

Additionally, once NordVPN is enabled, it blocks all other ports to prevent any security issues. Also, keep in mind that port forwarding is unavailable with NordVPN.

Check for NordVPN software issues

Unsurprisingly, NordVPN isn’t immune to software issues like bugs, crashes, freezing, etc. The best way to prevent these nuisances is to keep your application up-to-date. NordVPN does so automatically, but don’t hesitate to delete and reinstall it if you’ve noticed a lack of updates recently.

Turn off other VPN apps if you’re a customer of multiple products. These services can interfere with each other and prevent proper VPN connections. Check background processes to be certain that nothing is getting in the way.

Check the firewall blocking

We mentioned previously that firewalls could block ports necessary for NordVPN to work properly. However, it can also block VPN connections entirely if the settings are misconfigured.

Windows Firewall NordVPN

Add the NordVPN app to the exceptions list to guarantee that it can operate without hindrances.

Restart the TAP adapter

TAP adapters are a fundamental component of any VPN service. As such, even a small issue with them can cascade into NordVPN not working properly. Reinstalling the NordVPN application should have fixed these issues, but you can double-check for trouble manually.

NordVPN TAP adapters

Windows users can open the Control Panel and visit the Network and Sharing Center. Click change adapter settings on the left side. Then find the one named TAP-NordVPN Windows Adapter. Right-click it and disable it. Enable it back after a few moments.

If that didn’t help, consider uninstalling it through the Control Panel. After that, download a new version from the NordVPN website.

Change DNS server configuration

Another frequent issue in the expansive VPN machine is DNS (Domain Name System) server configuration issues. NordVPN sets them automatically, but you can set custom ones directly in the application.

NordVPN custom DNS setting

Open the app and go to the settings menu (the cogwheel in the bottom left). Then open the Connection menu. There you’ll see the option to Use Custom DNS. Toggle it on and input your desired DNS addresses. and are standard publicly available addresses, although you can input any other compatible addresses. However, be advised that misconfigured DNS addresses can expose you to DNS leaks and other security issues.

Contact customer service

Consider reaching out to customer support if you’re nearing your wits’ end. They’re available 24/7 via live chat for immediate assistance. And get ready to describe the situation in detail if you want helpful answers.

Connectivity issues on different platforms

Perhaps NordVPN not connecting is related to your device’s operating system. Here are some bonus troubleshooting tips for specific devices.

NordVPN not connecting on Windows

The NordVPN Windows app is one of the most feature-rich versions of the software. That means that NordVPN not connecting on Windows can stem from the greatest variety of factors. Here’s a recommended course of action to fix any issues.

  1. Switch between servers to see if the problem persists
  2. Try different tunneling protocols (UDP, TCP, NordLynx). Install or update WireGuard drivers if NordLynx isn’t working.
  3. Run the NordVPN diagnostics tool
    1. Open the Settings menu
    2. Go to General
    3. Scroll down and click the Run diagnostics button
    4. Click Reset app
  4. Reinstall the TAP drivers if you’re encountering TAP driver errors
  5. Configure network, firewall, and antivirus settings to permit NordVPN and other VPN apps
    1. Add nordvpn.exe, nordvpn-service.exe, and openvpn-service.exe to the exceptions lists
  6. Check for Windows system updates
  7. Try using custom DNS addresses
  8. Run the NordVPN Diagnostics tool and perform a Network Flush

NordVPN not connecting on Mac

NordVPN not connecting on Mac can stem from app configuration issues. Here are the recommended troubleshooting steps Apple fans should take.

  1. Reset the NordVPN application using the terminal
    1. Completely turn off the NordVPN app. Right-click on NordVPN in the dock and select Quit
    2. Open the Terminal. Simultaneously press the command button and the spacebar. Type in “terminal” into the search field and select the Terminal app.
    3. Enter one of these commands into the terminal
      1. defaults delete com.nordvpn.osx-apple (if you downloaded NordVPN from the App Store)
      2. defaults delete com.nordvpn.osx (if you downloaded NordVPN from the official website)
    4. Launch NordVPN
  2. Switch between the available tunneling protocols

NordVPN not connecting on iOS

You can erase the dreaded “NordVPN not connecting” iOS prompt by following these instructions.

  1. Check if connection issues persist with other tunneling protocols (TCP, UDP, NordLynx)
  2. Try connecting to another server
  3. Reinstall the NordVPN app. Ensure you’re using the official version by following the App Store link from the NordVPN website
  4. Try connecting to different DNS addresses, such as or
  5. Reset network settings through the Settings app

NordVPN not connecting on Android

NordVPN not connecting on Android can pertain to issues with the app or a lack of necessary permissions. Follow these steps to get to the bottom of the issue.

  1. Try reinstalling the NordVPN app. Get the official Google App Store link from NordVPN’s website to avoid imitator apps
  2. Ensure firewall apps are disabled because they occupy the VPN interface NordVPN needs to run correctly
  3. Add NordVPN to the exceptions list of any antivirus app you use. Additionally, NordVPN can substitute many antivirus services, thanks to the Threat Protection Lite feature
  4. Reset your Android network settings

NordVPN not connecting on Linux

Unsurprisingly, fixing NordVPN not connecting on Linux will require fiddling with the terminal. Luckily, that shouldn’t dissuade the average Linux enthusiast.

  1. Update the NordVPN app through the terminal
    1. Open the terminal and type in the following commands
    2. sudo apt-get update
    3. sudo apt-get upgrade
    4. Launch NordVPN
  2. Remove the NordVPN app using the sudo apt-get – -purge autoremove nordvpn* command and switch to a manual connection


As you can see, many issues can cause NordVPN to stop working. Luckily, the solutions to NordVPN connectivity issues are pretty universal across desktop and mobile devices. Plus, the app has a handy diagnostics tool that can do most of the troubleshooting for you. And if that didn’t help, you can always rely on 24/7 customer support to lend a helping hand.

Have you encountered any NordVPN issues that we didn’t cover? Share your woes and solutions by leaving a comment!

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Why does NordVPN not connect?

NordVPN might fail to connect because of software issues. The easiest way to fix them is by restarting the app. If that didn’t help, check for updates. Consider reinstalling the application if it doesn’t update automatically. Finally, try the other fixes or simply contact customer support to solve your specific issue quickly.

Why is NordVPN not auto connecting?

NordVPN not auto connecting can be caused by software issues. The quickest fix would be a restart, update, or reinstallation. If these didn’t help, try the other solutions or reach out to NordVPN customer support specialists.

Why does it take so long for NordVPN to connect?

Long connection times to a particular server can mean it’s overcrowded or under maintenance. On the other hand, it could be you’re not using the fastest available protocol (NordLynx). If everything is in order, you can suspect software issues requiring more extensive troubleshooting.

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