Note: the guide might appear complicated at first glance, but just like cooking, if you follow the recipe, you’ll get great results.

The main problems:

  1. There is no way to install a VPN app on Roku natively (unlike Amazon Firestick or Apple TV).
  2. Roku doesn’t have DNS functionality, meaning you can’t change the DNS server to access geo-blocked content.

The best solutions:

  1. Connect your Roku streaming device through a router that is connected to a VPN.
  2. Connect your Roku streaming device through a virtual router.

Prepare your account to watch country-exclusive channels

vpn on roku setup
Since the US has the most extensive selection of TV channels, shows, and movies, we’ll continue to use it as an example.

Important note: to access the US-exclusive content on Roku, you’ll need to change your location to the US on your account before connecting to a router.

You’ll need an American ZIP code. It’s a five-digit number that you can quickly get from the internet by doing a straightforward search. People often choose Californian ZIP codes, so I advise you to do the same.

The most important points:

  • Make sure that you’ve picked the US in your Roku account country settings.
  • Make sure you connect to the US VPN server.

Solution no.1: Connect a VPN to a router

vpn on roku setup router

All of the US channels will be accessible once you connect the Roku device to a network that’s connected to a VPN-enabled router on the US server.

Most routers support VPN connections, but some don’t. To find out whether your router has a VPN functionality, check the manufacturer’s website or your router’s manual.

In case the router you have doesn’t support a VPN, you have a couple of options:

  1. Install a new firmware (DD-WRT or Tomato) that flashes a VPN.
  2. Buy a VPN-compatible router.

You can find a comprehensive guide on how to set up a VPN on a router. I highly recommend you go through it.

Solution no.2: Set up a virtual router with a VPN

vpn on roku setup virtual router

For this, you’ll need a Mac or a Windows computer. Follow these simple guides on how to set up a VPN on Mac and Windows.

Now, you need to create a VPN hotspot on your computer and then use your Roku device to connect to that hotspot.

A virtual router on a Windows computer

You need to take the steps below to configure your virtual router on Windows. Don’t let the Command line discourage you – the process is straightforward as long as you follow the steps.

  1. Open a search bar.
  2. Type “cmd.”
  3. Right-click on “Command prompt.”
  4. “Run as administrator.”
  5. Type: NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=surfsharkvpn key=password (SSID is the name of your network – you’ll see it when connecting your Roku device to the internet. I named mine “surfsharkvpn.” Key is your chosen password. It has to be at least eight digits in length).
  6. Then type: NETSH WLAN start hostednetwork
  7. Now you’ve created and activated your Hosted Network.
  8. “Ctrl” + R
  9. Launch “ncpa.cpl.”
  10. Now you can see the “Local Area Connection X” (it’s your new Microsoft Hosted Virtual Adapter).
  11. Remember the name of the Virtual Adapter in step 10.
  12. Right-click on the adapter with the VPN name and the internet connection.
  13. Select “Properties.”
  14. Select the “Sharing” tab.
  15. Tick the option names “Allow other network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection.”
  16. In the drop-down menu, choose the adapter that I’ve mentioned in step 10.
  17. Click “Ok” to finish.

Congratulations, you’ve created a new Wi-Fi hotspot that can share a VPN connection to your Roku device.

A virtual router on Mac

I must start this by saying that in order to turn your Mac into a virtual router, you’ll need to connect your Mac to the internet network with an Ethernet cable.

If you have that covered, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Apple logo in the top left corner.
  2. Click “System preferences.”
  3. Select “Network.”
  4. Click the “+” on the bottom left corner.
  5. “Interface:” choose “VPN.”
  6. “VPN type:” choose “IKEv2.”
  7. “Service name:” type in your preferred network name.
  8. Put in the US server address (you can find it on the internet), Remote ID.
  9. Click “Authentication settings.”
  10. Click “Username and Password of your VPN account.”
  11. Click “Ok.”
  12. Then click “Advanced.”
  13. Click “Send all traffic over VPN connection.”
  14. Click “Ok.”
  15. Click “Apply” and “Connect.”
  16. Click the Apple logo again and go to “System preferences.”
  17. Select “Sharing.”
  18. Tick the box on “Internet sharing.”
  19. Choose “Wi-Fi.”
  20. “Network name:” type in the network name; “Channel: [default]”; “Security:” select WPA2 Personal; “Password:” type in your chosen password; “Verify:” type in the password again.
  21. Click “Ok” to finish.

Congratulations, you’ve now created a hotspot that you can connect to with your Roku streaming device.

If the setup didn’t work, it could be that your computer model, hardware, or operating system version is not compatible with Wi-Fi sharing. In this case, use our guide to set up a VPN on a router we linked to in the above section.

Finish: Connect Roku to VPN

vpn on roku setup

Now that you’ve set up a VPN on a router or created a virtual router on your Mac or a Windows computer, you can connect Roku to the internet.

  1. Go to the Roku menu.
  2. Select “Settings.”
  3. Select “Network.”
  4. Select “Wireless (Wi-Fi).
  5. Click on the network you’ve created.
  6. Enter the password.
  7. Click “Connect.”

That’s it! Enjoy all the content you haven’t enjoyed before.

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