TorGuard makes several boasts about its massive server list, which includes over 3,000 privately-owned servers.
Why wouldn’t it? That’s an enormous amount of servers, and it indicates that TorGuard’s other claims – which include private browsing and great connection speeds – can easily be trusted. After all, providers such as NordVPN and ExpressVPN have similarly huge server fleets, and they provide excellent VPN experiences.
There’s more to it than that, however. The secret to those providers’ success is that their servers are not only plentiful, but they’re also well placed, and geared for stronger performances. No matter how many servers TorGuard has, then, there’s no guarantee they’ll constitute a top-quality service.
For that reason, we’re going to inspect the TorGuard servers a little more closely to see how they stand up under scrutiny.
How big is the TorGuard server list?
As we mentioned, the website states that TorGuard has over 3,000 servers at its disposal. These servers are based in 64 locations in 51 countries.
That all seems very impressive, but upon comparing these figures to other VPN providers, it begins to look more pallid. ExpressVPN, for example, runs fewer servers overall – just over 2,000 – but those servers are located in 94 countries, which is almost twice as much coverage as TorGuard offers.
It’s isn’t simply the major-league server lists that outperform TorGuard in this regard, either; Astrill VPN has around 320 servers in total, but these are based in 63 countries (around 10% of TorGuard’s servers but located in 12 more countries).
Furthermore, TorGuard does not provide any information on how many servers are in a certain location. It merely states how many server locations there are, and in which countries they’re situated. When we asked their customer support team if they could specify any further, they merely said “we have 1000s in each location.”
Quite simply, we don’t believe them. The quoted claim is obviously unfeasible, and other responses from the support team on platforms such as Reddit refer to each “server” by its location name. This gives us reason to believe TorGuard’s server figures are massively, massively inflated.
For now, though, we can do little else but explore the spread of TorGuard’s servers in terms of location, not as overall servers.
The spread of the TorGuard server list
TorGuard’s location spread looks like this:
- North America: 18%
- Central and Eastern Europe: 18%
- Western Europe: 16.2%
- South and Southeast Asia: 10.3%
- The Middle East and North Africa: 7.4%
- Northern Europe: 5.8%
- East Asia: 5.8%
- Australasia: 4.4%
- South America: 2.9%
- Central America: 2.9%
- Sub-Saharan Africa: 1.5%
This looks more or less as we imagined: North America taking precedence, followed by Europe, and dropping off gradually until we hit Sub-Saharan Africa at the bottom. Most VPN providers aimed at English-language audiences tend to spread their servers this way.
The only real surprise is seeing the MENA region ranking so highly, taking up 7.4% of TorGuard’s overall locations. Sub-Saharan Africa, on the other hand, falls prey to a familiar issue with VPN server lists: there is one server in South Africa, and that’s it.
Although internet penetration is quite low in this region, TorGuard’s sparse coverage still leaves almost a billion potential users without server access beyond the one(s?) in South Africa.
For instance, users in Lagos are at least 3,000 km from an available server. If the South African server(s) crash, furthermore, the nearest available servers for South African users are in Egypt (6,200+ km), São Paulo (6,300+ km), and Tunisia (7,250+ km). As proximity generally increases the strength of server connections, this is clearly an issue for TorGuard users in this region.
Again, though, figures alone do not tell the whole story. If the TorGuard servers are generally quite powerful, then this ceases to be such a serious issue. Therefore, it’s best we try out the TorGuard servers’ actual performance to see where it stands.
TorGuard server speed
We conducted speed tests on TorGuard at several different points during the day and cross-referenced our results with user reviews floating around the web.
In general, TorGuard’s servers tend to be among the quickest of any VPN provider on the market today. This makes us confident that the server fleet will provide strong connections even in regions such as East Asia and Northern Europe, where the servers appear to be more spaced out.
However, we are still not convinced TorGuard would be such a great option for users in South America and Sub-Saharan Africa. We were testing TorGuard from the UK and found our connection to the Indian servers – which is roughly the same distance as South Africa and Egypt – to be somewhat lacking.
The speeds were fine for brief use, but if they were the strongest we had to rely on, we’d surely find TorGuard sorely disappointing.
TorGuard servers and streaming
One of the biggest attractions of using a VPN is the promise of bypassing geo-restrictions on streaming services, and having a ton of servers at your disposal usually means you can do this easily.
In TorGuard’s instance, however, this is not the case. All of its 3,000 readily-available servers use shared IP addresses, which anti-VPN services like Netflix can sniff out in an instant. This isn’t always the case – ExpressVPN uses shared IP and just replaces the ones that get noticed by Netflix – but it, unfortunately, is the case, most of the time, with TorGuard.
There is a solution, however. TorGuard offers dedicated IP addresses for around $7.99 extra per month; this IP then becomes yours, and Netflix will not realize it belongs to a VPN because you’ll be the only one using it.
But $7.99 is more than a monthly subscription to most streaming services from Hulu to Amazon TV, and this charge is added on top of your existing TorGuard subscription. As such, we are not confident in the TorGuard server list in its capability for streaming whatsoever.
TorGuard servers and torrenting
Now comes the good news: torrent support is one of the main reasons TorGuard exists (it’s even in the name!). Even in its most basic package, the “Anonymous Proxy,” provides a SOCKS5 proxy, which is essential for secure torrenting.
As well as this, TorGuard assures its users of unlimited bandwidth on all servers, which negates the speed-related issues such as blocking and throttling. So long as you have a TorGuard server nearby, there’s a very strong chance that TorGuard will provide you with a great torrenting experience.
Read more on TorGuard for Torrenting
TorGuard’s issues can be boiled down to its lack of transparency and its lack of servers in certain regions. However, many territories of the world do, in fact, have decent coverage from TorGuard, which means these issues will not be a bother to users there. If you’re looking for torrent support, then, the TorGuard server list is one of the best-optimized for the task.