SUMMARY: Windscribe Pro and Windscribe Free are both reliable VPNs that are safe to use for torrenting and P2P file-sharing on most servers. Both versions of the VPN use secure encryption, IP leak protection, and an anonymous logging policy, but they are not as fast as top-rated competitors like ExpressVPN.
Here’s a table explaining the key differences between the two versions of Windscribe when it comes to torrenting:
|# of P2P Servers
||Up to 10
||10GB per month
The free version of Windscribe is the outright best free VPN for torrenting thanks to its strong security, private logging policy, and generous 10GB monthly data limit.
If you’re a regular torrenter, though, you’ll know that 10GB probably won’t be enough data for you.
Upgrading to Windscribe Pro removes this data limit, and provides access to every server in the Windscribe network, rather than the maximum of 10 servers available on the free version.
With Windscribe Pro, you’ll also get access to WireGuard, SOCKS5 proxy support, and port forwarding.
Our tests found Windscribe did not significantly slow down our download bitrate while torrenting.
Here’s a more in-depth overview of Windscribe’s safety for torrenting:
Does Windscribe Log Your Torrenting Activity?
Windscribe has a trustworthy logging policy that only collects anonymous data for maintenance purposes. Windscribe does not record the files you torrent, nor does it store any information relating to it.
Windscribe’s logging policy is safe for torrenters.
Windscribe’s logging policy has not been independently verified, and the company’s Canadian jurisdiction is a poor choice given its strict copyright enforcement laws. However, this is unlikely to be an issue if the VPN has no personally identifiable information to hand over.
While there have been anecdotal reports of Windscribe customers receiving DMCA notices for torrenting, it’s highly unlikely that this is due to the company cooperating with copyright authorities.
If you’re not careful, it’s incredibly easy to reveal your public IP address by simply forgetting to activate your VPN before activating your torrenting client.
AES-256 Encryption, Leak Protection & Additional Security Features
Both the free and paid versions of Windscribe provide the full range of security features you would expect from a torrenting VPN. These include AES-256 encryption, IP and DNS leak protection, and an effective kill switch.
Windscribe actually calls its kill switch ‘Firewall’ because it functions differently to regular VPN kill switches. Windscribe claims that if your connection drops, ‘Firewall’ guarantees that no data will leave your device, which means that your real IP cannot leak.
Windscribe’s Firewall can be quickly toggled on and off from its home screen
256-bit encryption ensures your torrenting traffic is indecipherable to your ISP and other third parties, which means no one can see what you’re downloading.
EXPERT TIP: Always make sure that you disconnect from your VPN after fully closing your torrent client. Otherwise, your IP address could still leak.
Fast Local Torrenting Speeds – But Not the Fastest
We used a fixed-speed local connection to test Windscribe’s average torrenting bitrate when connected to a nearby server. Here are our results:
|Average Download Bitrate with No VPN
||Average Download Bitrate on Local VPN Connection
||Average Download Bitrate on Long Distance VPN Connection
We measured an average download bitrate of 7.2MiB/s using a local Windscribe server. This isn’t as quick as the fastest torrenting VPNs, but it means your torrents will still download at a respectable speed – less than 30% slower than if you were using no VPN at all.
However, Windscribe’s speeds were significantly slower over long-distance connections, particularly between Europe and Asia.
We found the download bitrate on our test connection dropped from 10MiB/s to 2.7MiB/s – that’s almost 75% slower. This is particularly important if you live far away from Windscribe’s torrenting servers.
Your torrenting bitrate will also depend on the number of users seeding the specific file you’re torrenting, as well as the upload speeds of their connections. If a torrent doesn’t have enough seeders, even the fastest VPN can’t make it download any quicker.
Windscribe Pro Includes Port Forwarding
Windscribe Pro has port forwarding, which helps make it a very good VPN for seeding torrent files.
Port forwarding is a rare feature. If used correctly it means you can enjoy faster uploads, and potentially faster downloads, when you torrent.
Port forwarding is setup via the Windscribe website – not within the app.
It works by taking a port from your home router to the wider internet and leaving it permanently open. This port will be the same as one used by your Bittorrent client for download and upload traffic. By leaving it open, traffic passes through faster and with fewer interruptions.
If you’re worried about security, don’t be – only one port will be forwarded at a time, and only on the Windscribe server location you choose. All you need to do is tell your Bittorrent client to use the same port and you’re ready to go.
While our testing has found that there are plenty of VPNs without port forwarding which are faster than Windscribe, Windscribe would be slower without it.
Windscribe Free Includes a 10GB Data Cap
There is no data cap for Windscribe Pro users, which means you can torrent an unlimited number of files without restrictions. If you’re a paying subscriber, you can download or upload as much data as you like.
However, Windscribe Free users are limited to a 10GB monthly data allowance. That’s a very generous amount for a trustworthy free VPN, but it won’t last long if you do a lot of torrenting.