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Understanding the Proxy Settings Feature - Knowledgebase / Technical / Application Settings and Features / Application & Features - PIA Support Portal

Understanding the Proxy Settings Feature

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To access proxy settings within the application, click the three dots in the upper right-hand corner of the application to open the application's Settings. Once in the Settings navigate to the Proxy tab, from there you will have the option to connect to our SOCKS5 Proxy or our Shadowsocks connection.

SOCKS5 Proxy:

The first Proxy that we provided our users the option to connect directly through our application is our SOCKS5 Proxy. This proxy was added on our v1.4.0 release, this adds an additional "hop" between the user and the VPN server.

As mentioned above to access this connection method select the three dots in the upper right corner of the application to open the settings menu navigate to the Proxy tab. 

Within this tab, you will see the option to select the SOCKS5 Proxy option. Fill out the following text boxes as follows:

  • Server IP Address: Enter in the IP address for the proxy-nl.piaproxy.net domain

    (`ping` the hostname to receive an IP address for the above domain address)

  • Port: 1080

Then fill out the username and password using your “x” credentials you generated in the CCP as covered in the above section. Once everything is filled out, press OK, and then connect to a server. 

If you receive any error messages or are unable to connect, please contact the PIA Customer Support team here for further assistance. 

Shadowsocks: 

The second Proxy connection that we provide our users is our Shadowsocks connection. This has been added to our most recent release of desktop version 1.7. 

Similar to the SOCKS5 proxy users can access this feature by clicking the three dots in the upper right-hand corner of the application to open the application's Settings. Once in the Settings navigate to the Proxy tab.

Here you will see the option for Shadowsocks. Once selected the server selection will be set to automatic by default. Users can change the server location by clicking on the Configure button. 

Once clicked, a new menu will appear giving you the available server locations. Click the desired server and then click OK

*Note:* Shadowsocks isn't provided by all PIA locations - only locations that provide Shadowsocks appear in the list. When "Auto" is selected, the following strategy is used:

  • If the chosen VPN location supports Shadowsocks, use that location.
  • Otherwise, use the Shadowsocks location closest to you based on the lowest latency.

This is intended to minimize the additional latency added by the Shadowsocks hop

After the Shadowsocks Proxy is selected, you will see the change on the application dashboard indicating you are using Shadowsocks. You can then connect using the power button as normal.