What is the WireGuard VPN protocol?

For a long time, we have been using OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, SSTP, and some other VPN protocols. But, modern age has placed requirements for faster, easier, and more secure VPN protocols, and that has led to VPN protocols such as WireGuard and Ligthway. But, what is the WireGuard VPN protocol all about? What makes it better than the other VPN protocols? Is it better than the other protocols?

The four VPN protocols first mentioned in this article (OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, SSTP) have been around for a long time. They have been developed constantly throughout this time, but they all have in common that they are made out of a whole lot of code. That makes them slower and hard to change, and even harder to inspect.

One of the main requirements for a new VPN protocol was the need for easier code, making it faster, easier to inspect, and more suitable for modern age.

The WireGuard protocol

What has changed?

When the VPN protocols were first made, everyone used a VPN at their home computer. Today, people spend more time on their mobile devices which they bring with them all day and everywhere they go. First of all, heavy code will make your battery deplete faster. But, it will also use more time connecting to the servers due to heavy code.

Besides this, the old protocols would normally disconnect whenever your connection dropped or whenever you changed you network. The latter doesn’t really work well in the modern world when you change from your local WiFi network to your 4G connection as you leave for school. In the moment you enter school, you will connect to the local WiFi network of your school. But, when you enter the parking house of your school, the connection might drop due to its location in the basement. If not, then it will for sure drop when you enter the elevator.

All these changes have caused trouble for the traditional VPN protocols, and they have often crashed, or you would constantly need to reconnect whenever you changed your network. With the new WireGuard protocol, that isn’t necessary anymore. The VPN will stay connected to the same server throughout the server, and even when you lose all your connections in a basement or as you use an elevator.

These are the main changes and the most important features of the new WireGuard VPN protocol. Quite a lot of VPN providers have already implemented the protocol in their services. This is true for VyprVPN, and StrongVPN. SurfsharkVPN has promised to implement the protocol in the second half of 2020, while NordVPN has created their own NordLynx protocol, built on the top of the WireGuard protocol. This is yet only available to Linux users, but it will soon be made available to users on other platforms as well.

ExpressVPN doesn’t support WireGuard, but they have their own Lightway protocol which seems to be very much the same as WireGuard, at least based on the description they have given it.

Do you have more information about other VPN providers and whether or not they support the WireGuard protocol? Write a comment and share your intel below!

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