3 steps to connect Roku to your VPN
- Set up a VPN on a router, OR create a virtual router with a VPN.
- Factory reset your Roku device.
- Create a new Roku account for the region.
Roku is an amazing streaming service to equip your home with but has different content libraries across different regions. What’s worse is that Roku gets automatically region-locked when you first set it up. How do you access different libraries then? You can set up a VPN on Roku to bypass these restrictions.
The problem is that Roku does not natively support VPNs or smart DNS functionality, but there’s a workaround.
Note: For the following method to work, you will need to factory reset your Roku device and create a new account. This is because Roku automatically assigns your geographical location to your device and account when you set it up for the first time and you cannot manually change it.
Step 1: Set up a VPN on your home or virtual router
First and foremost, let’s get the technical bit sorted out. To connect your Roku to a VPN, you can either install a VPN on your home router or set up a virtual one using a Windows 10 laptop.
Solution A: Connect your router to a VPN
When you connect your router to a VPN, it extends the VPN benefits to all the devices on the WiFi network, including Roku.
Most routers support VPN connections, but some don’t. To find out whether your router has VPN functionality, check the manufacturer’s website or your router’s manual.
In case the router you have doesn’t support VPNs, you have a couple of options:
- Buy a VPN-compatible router.
- Install a new firmware (DD-WRT or Tomato) that flashes a VPN.
You can find a comprehensive firmware guide on our blog that explains how to set up a VPN on a router. I highly recommend you do this so you can enjoy the VPN benefits on all of your home devices.
Solution B: Set up a virtual router with a VPN
To set up a virtual router with a VPN, you’ll need a Windows 10 laptop and patience for six simple steps.
Disclaimer: This method only works on Windows. A Mac cannot share and receive WiFi simultaneously unless it’s using the L2TP/IPSec protocol. L2TP/IPSec is outdated and obsolete, and Surfshark does not offer it among its VPN protocols.
Now, you need to create a VPN hotspot on your computer and then use your Roku device to connect to that hotspot.
Set up a virtual router on Windows 10
- Step 1: Press Windows Key + S, type in Mobile hotspot settings, and press enter.
- Step 2: Turn the Mobile Hotspot “On.”
- Step 3: Scroll down to Related Settings and choose Change adapter options.
- Step 4: Right-click on your new VPN internet connection and pick Properties.
- Step 5: On the top-left corner of the window, click on the Sharing tab and tick the Allow other network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection box.
- Step 6: In the drop-down menu below, choose your newly created hotspot and click OK.
Congratulations, you’ve created a new WiFi hotspot. Now you can move on to setting up your Roku device and account.
Step 2: Factory reset your Roku device
Roku doesn’t allow you to switch your region once you set up your device manually. This is why a factory reset and a new account are required for this to work.
Disclaimer: performing this step will erase your saved channels, logins, and account settings. Your data, however, will not be lost. You will have to download all shows and movies again and set up your Roku like you did the first time.
To perform the factory reset on Roku, you can either:
- Use the physical reset button on your device, or
- Go to Roku’s Settings > System > Advanced System Settings and choose factory reset.
Now that your device is reset, it’s time to create a new account.
Step 3: Create a new Roku account
For this step, make sure you have your VPN on and are connected to the region you want to access Roku from (we’ll use the US as an example since it has the largest library).
Now, let’s get to creating a new account:
- Turn on and set up your Roku. Note: If you’re using a virtual router through your laptop, make sure you connect Roku to your created hotspot.
- When prompted to log in, select Create account instead.
- Set up an account for the US region. Tip: When asked for a Zip Code, google a random one from where the company is based, California.
- Finish setting up your account.
Congratulations, your Roku is now associated with the US region. Enjoy!
Will I need to reset my Roku every time?
Since you’ve set up your Roku in a different region than your own, you shouldn’t have to worry about resetting your device every time.
Instead, connect to a VPN server located in the country you want to access Roku from, and you should be good!
That’s it! Enjoy all the content you haven’t enjoyed before.
30-day money-back guaranteeTry out Surfshark