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This tutorial guide will walk you through how to set up ExpressVPN Version 7.x for Windows on your PC or laptop.

Please note that this app requires Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10.

Prefer manual setupSee the instructions for manual setup on Windows 10 and Windows 7 and 8.


Jump to section

Download the app
Get your activation code
Install the app
Connect to a VPN server location
Disconnect from the VPN server location
Choose a different VPN server location
Switch to a different VPN protocol
Launch and connect ExpressVPN on startup
Use the VPN Speed Test
Use split tunneling
Use IPv6 Leak protection
Change languages in the ExpressVPN Windows app
Use the ExpressVPN browser extension
Uninstall the app


Download the app

Open the Welcome Email you received when you signed up for ExpressVPN. Click the link in the email.

ExpressVPN welcome email with Set Up ExpressVPN button highlighted.

If you cannot find the link, sign in to your account here.

ExpressVPN Sign-in screen with Sign In button highlighted.

Once you have clicked the link in the welcome email you received, or signed in to the website, click on Download for Windows. This will start the download for your app.

download expressvpn windows

Do not close the window! You will need it for the next step.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Get your activation code

In order to use ExpressVPN on your Windows computer, you will need your activation code. Let’s copy it to your clipboard.

To copy your activation code to the clipboard, click the copy code icon in the top right corner of the box containing the code. You will be asked to provide it later.

ExpressVPN setup screen showing activation code and with Click to Copy button highlighted.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Install the app

Locate and double-click on the download file on your computer.

Open the ExpresVPN app installer for Windows.

The setup process will begin with this Welcome screen. Click Continue, Continue, and Set Up ExpressVPN.

ExpressVPN for Windows welcome flow.

If you see a prompt to install the app, click Install to proceed.

Please wait while the app is being installed on your PC.

When prompted, paste your activation code. This is the code you found earlier. You can paste it by pressing Ctrl + V, or right-clicking the rectangular field and clicking Paste. Then click Sign In.

Enter your activation code and click "Sign In".

You have the option of launching ExpressVPN on startup. Select your preference to continue.

Select whether to launch ExpressVPN upon Windows startup.

You can also choose to anonymously share analytics about your VPN connections to help improve ExpressVPN. Select your preference to continue.

ExpressVPN does not collect your private data and anonymizes it before it reaches ExpressVPN servers.

Choose whether to send analytics for ExpressVPN on Windows.

Congratulations! You are now ready to access ExpressVPN’s vast network of server locations.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Connect to a VPN server location

To connect to a VPN server location, click the ON Button. By default, ExpressVPN will suggest the location that provides the optimal experience for you, called Smart Location.

Click to connect ExpressVPN on Windows.

Once you see the Connected message on the app screen, you can begin surfing with freedom and security!

ExpressVPN on Windows is connected.

Note: A single ExpressVPN subscription can be used simultaneously on five devices, regardless of platform. If you try to use more than five devices simultaneously on one subscription, you will see the below screen:

Too many devices are connected to ExpressVPN.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Disconnect from the VPN server location

To disconnect from the VPN server location, click the ON Button while the VPN is on.

Click to disconnect ExpressVPN on Windows.

You will know you are disconnected when you see the “Not connected” message.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Choose a different VPN server location

To connect to a different server location, click on the location picker.

Note: For the first time you try to change locations while connected to VPN, you will get a warning stating your internet traffic may be unsecure during reconnection.

Launch the location pick on ExpressVPN for Windows.

To connect to a server location, click on it, then click the ON Button. Alternatively, you can connect by double-clicking the location.

By default, the list of VPN locations features two tabs: Recommended and All Locations.

The Recommended tab shows you ExpressVPN’s top picks for you to connect to.

The ExpressVPN for Windows location picker.

The All Locations tab lists the VPN server locations by region. You can expand and collapse the lists by clicking the > icon on the right.

All locations in the ExpressVPN for Windows location picker.

Favorites tab is added once you have added favorite locations. You can save a location to your list of favorites by clicking the star icon on the right.

Favorited locations in the ExpressVPN for Windows app.

You can also search for your desired server location by using the search bar.

Inside the search bar, type the name of your desired server location and then double-click the server location in the search results to connect to it.
Search for a location in the ExpressVPN app.

After disconnecting from a server location you selected, you can return to your Smart Location (the location recommended for the smoothest experience) by clicking the location marked Smart Location.

Select the smart location on ExpressVPN for Windows.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Switch to a different VPN protocol

VPN protocols are the methods by which your device connects to a VPN server. Switching to a different protocol can help you achieve faster connection speeds.

To switch to a different protocol, click on the hamburger menu (≡), then click Options. Make sure you are not connected to the VPN when doing this.

Select options in the ExpressVPN for Windows app menu.

In the Protocol tab, select the protocol you want to use, then click OK.

Note: PPTP and L2TP/IPsec provide weak security benefits and should only be used for anonymization or for changing locations.

The ExpressVPN for Windows protocols menu.

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Launch and connect ExpressVPN on startup

You can configure whether ExpressVPN automatically connects after your PC starts up.

To configure the “connect upon startup” settings, click on the hamburger menu (≡), then click Options.

Select options in the ExpressVPN for Windows app menu.

Under the General tab, check (or uncheck) the box for Launch ExpressVPN on Windows startup.

You can also configure ExpressVPN to connect to the last location you connected to.

Choose to launch ExpressVPN on Windows startup.

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Use the VPN Speed Test

To use the VPN Speed Test, you must be disconnected from the VPN.

Start by clicking on the hamburger menu (≡) and then Speed Test.

Launch the ExpressVPN for Windows speed test.

On the Speed Test screen, click Run Test and wait for the tests to complete.

The main speed test screen.

After results are displayed, select a location using the following criteria:

  • Speed Index: the higher the better
  • Latency: the lower the better
  • Download Speed: the higher the better

The ExpressVPN for Windows speed test results.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Use split tunneling

This feature allows you to decide which apps use the VPN and which apps do not use the VPN when you are connected to ExpressVPN.

Important: You must be disconnected from the VPN to change your split-tunneling settings.

To change your split tunnel settings, click the hamburger menu (≡) and go to Options.

Under the General tab, tick the box in the Split tunneling section and click Settings.

Click on "Settings" under "Split tunneling".

From there, you can decide which of your apps will use the VPN and which ones will not use the VPN when you are connected to ExpressVPN.

Select which programs on Windows use ExpressVPN.

If you select the latter two options, you can specify which apps will (not) use VPN. Click on the plus sign (+) to select the apps.

Click the plus sign to add apps to split tunneling.

Check the box next to all the apps you want to select. If your desired app is not shown, click Add Another App to search for it.

Select which apps will use the VPN.

Click OK to apply your changes.

IN DEPTH: Learn more about the split-tunneling feature

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Use IPv6 Leak protection

By default, the ExpressVPN app will block IPv6 connections to protect against IPv6 leaks.

If you encounter issues with devices that only use IPv6 connections, go to OptionsAdvanced, and uncheck the box under IPv6 Leak Protection.

Check the box to enable IPv6 protection.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Change languages in the ExpressVPN Windows app

Click the hamburger menu (≡) then select Options.

Select options in the ExpressVPN for Windows app menu.

Select the Advanced tab. Under Language, select the language you want to change to.

Select a language to change to.

When prompted, click OK to confirm. ExpressVPN will change to your selected language after restarting.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Use the ExpressVPN browser extension

If you’re using Version 6.2 (or later) of the ExpressVPN app, you can download and use the ExpressVPN browser extension to remotely control the ExpressVPN app from your browser. The extension is available for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

From your app, click the hamburger menu (≡), select Options, then go to the Browsers tab.

Click to get the ExpressVPN browser extensions.

Click Get Extension and follow the on-page instructions.

Learn more about the ExpressVPN browser extension here.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Uninstall the app

Note: The below instructions are for Windows 10. If you are using Windows 7 or 8, please see the instructions for uninstalling programs on Windows 7 and Windows 8.

From your Windows desktop, go to Settings > Apps & features.

Scroll through the list of programs until you locate ExpressVPN. Select ExpressVPN and then click Uninstall.

Uninstall the ExpressVPN app for Windows.

If you see that ExpressVPN is still listed as an available VPN connection after uninstalling:

  1. Click the Start button, and then click Run… (only for Windows XP and Vista) or press Windows key + R (for any other Windows OS) to launch the run command.
  2. Type ncpa.cpl on the run command and then press Enter to go to your Network Connections window.
  3. On your Network Connections window, right-click on the WAN Miniport labeled ExpressVPN.
  4. Click Delete.
  5. From your Windows desktop, go to Settings Network & Internet > VPN.
  6. If you see ExpressVPN as an available connection, delete it.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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