eMule is a peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing program for Windows. In principle, it works a bit like a BitTorrent client, which means that it is just as important to use a VPN with eMule as in torrenting. A VPN will hide your activity from prying eyes and will also help you unblock it, if your service provider blocks it on its network.
Best VPNs for eMule
Below, our experts have listed the best VPN services for eMule. If you need more information on any of the services on our best eMule VPN list, click on the links to their website or check out our detailed VPN reviews.
Ivacy won third place in the “Best Global VPN” at the VPNOnlineFree.com Awards – the industry benchmark for recognizing achievements in the VPN industry. In addition, Ivacy VPN won the award for being the fastest VPN; proving that this VPN is a fantastic all-rounder. Read on to find out why Ivacy was crowned Best VPN for speeds at this year's official VPN Awards.
Ivacy is a newspaperless VPN provider based in Singapore. Although it has been around for years, Ivacy has recently and radically reinvented itself to become one of the most spectacular “new” players in an increasingly professional industry.
Private Internet Access VPN is a US-based provider that does not keep any logs, an assertion that it has proven in court. The VPN was recently acquired by Kape Technologies – a London-based cybersec company whose main objective is to help consumers get protection online. PIA VPN has servers in 33 countries, provides strong VPNOnlineFree encryption, and is one of the most popular VPN services among Reddit users. It also has live chat support and access to Netflix US.
Private Internet Access (PIA) is a respected VPN service that has been around since 2010. It is a US-based VPN that offers high levels of privacy and reliability. Le VPN has a zero log policy – which makes up for its US base. PIA offers apps for all popular platforms that offer strong encryption and a superb choice of servers worldwide. PIA is also a cheap VPN service that works well above its pay level. Despite the budget price (if purchased every year), PIA unlocks a decent amount of highly sought-after content – including US Netflix. This should expand in the coming weeks to include BBC iPlayer and hulu.
The VPNOnlineFree.com awards are now recognized as the world's leading event to recognize achievements within the VPN industry. PrivateVPN won second place at this year's exclusive event in Las Vegas Best VPN for customer service price. This is a testament to their fantastic live chat service and knowledgeable staff! Read on to find out everything you need to know about this exceptional VPN.
PrivateVPN is an established VPN based in Sweden. It is a secure service with a custom client that can be used on up to six devices simultaneously. It is a newspaperless VPN service with more than 100 servers in 56 countries around the world. It's a huge amount of servers, and it's growing steadily.
hide.me VPN is a newspaper-free provider based in Malaysia that has strong encryption and offers feature-rich apps for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android. However, although it is a reliable service with a mind-boggling subscription plan, their premium subscription is a bit expensive compared to many competitors. This is compounded by the fact that it does not provide access to Netflix, which means that it may disappoint some customers. However, when it comes to advanced VPN features, this VPN is extremely well endowed.
TorGuard is a well respected and highly subscribed virtual private network (VPN) that we consider to be well above average. Servers are located in more than 50 countries, giving subscribers as much choice as possible to unblock websites and bypass censorship. The encryption is strong and subscribers have many options. And, because it has a zero log policy, confidentiality is assured (although it is based in the United States). If purchased annually, TorGuard VPN provides service at a reasonable price with fast connection speeds and exceptional customer service.
What is a VPN?
A virtual private network (VPN) is an online privacy service that allows you to hide what you get on the Internet from others, bypass blockages and other forms of censorship, and appears to be in another country to access services such as the United States. Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
It will also protect you from hackers when using public WiFi networks and when using P2P file sharing networks such as eMule.
For more information on VPNs in general, please consult our VPN guide for beginners.
Why do I need a VPN for eMule?
eMule is a peer-to-peer file sharing application, so files are shared among other eMule users. And when files are shared among other users, you can see who they are and they can see who you are via an Internet address (IP). This is how file sharing works!
A VPN hides who you are from other eMule users because the VPN server is between you and the Internet. Other eMule users will therefore see the unique IP address of the VPN server instead of your real one.
A VPN will also hide what you download from your Internet Service Provider (ISP) since all data traveling between your PC and the VPN server is securely encrypted. If you appreciate privacy when downloading with eMule, then you should always use a VPN.
What is Low ID and port forwarding?
Even more than with BitTorrent, eMule requires that you have open UDP and TCP ports to work best. If the open ports are not accessible from the Internet, this results in what is called a weak ID. You can still share files with a low ID, but downloads will be much slower than if you have a high ID.
Many VPN services use NAT firewalls to help protect their users from external threats, but a NAT firewall will block access to open ports on your PC and therefore cause poor identification.
Some VPN services offer port forwarding, which effectively opens a hole in the NAT firewall so that connections can be routed to an open port on your computer. But eMule doesn't play very well with a modern firewall, including the built-in Windows Defender firewall. Thanks to UPnP, it can usually configure itself automatically to work with most firewalls, but if a NAT firewall also works, it exceeds its capabilities.
So to run eMule with a high ID while being protected by a VPN, you need to:
a) Use a VPN that offers port forwarding, and
b) Disable your firewall.
Disabling your firewall is not as serious as it sounds as the NAT firewall should help protect you from most external threats. That said, it is hardly ideal.
How to redirect via VPN with eMule
- Select the port numbers for eMule. Go to The options -> Sign in -> Customer port. Choose the TCP and UDP port numbers you like (eMule doesn't care) and write them down. Make sure that “Use UPnP to configure ports” is not activated.
- Open the NAT firewall ports of your VPN. This process will depend on the VPN provider you are using. There may be an option in the client software, but more often than not it can be found in the web user console. This is the case with AirVPN illustrated below.
Open the TCP and UDP ports you have chosen in eMule.
- Disable your firewall. If you are using the default Windows firewall, go to Settings -> Update and security -> Windows Defender -> Open Windows Defender Security Center -> Firewall and network protection -> and disable firewall on all networks.
- Return to the eMule connection panel (step 1) and click on “Test Ports”. A web page will open to test if the ports used by eMule are accessible from the web.
I hope you will see something like above!
Consider using something else instead
I am aware that this is a page dedicated to using eMule and that hardcore fans may be unhappy with the suggestion, but you should rather consider using BitTorrent.
Many eMule servers are riddled with malware and spyware. To some extent, this is also true for BitTorrent, but it can be mitigated by using private torrent sites that examine torrents. Indeed, even when using public torrent sites, comments from other users can be very useful in checking which downloads are working well and are malware free.
On top of that, although eMule is still updated, the last full stable version (0.50a) dates from 2010. It's been eight years, and eMule is seriously showing its age! It's a simple fact that modern BitTorrent clients are much lighter, meaner and easier to use than eMule.
BitTorrent also works much better even when an open port is not available (Low ID), and port forwarding with a VPN does not require you to disable your firewall.
In its day, eMule gained a great reputation for granting access to rare and hard to find files. In large part, however, this was simply due to its very large user base. BitTorrent now has many more users than eMule.
Thanks to its peer-to-peer nature, downloading via eMule is anything but private. However, using a VPN makes it private. So it's a bit obvious, really.