AirVPN is a popular service among privacy-conscious users. The VPN is well known for transparency about its network, reasonable costs, and attention to privacy. It’s not a perfect service, but it’s well worth considering for anyone who wants to ensure a good amount of anonymity.
AirVPN started life in 2010 as a free project developed by privacy-conscious “activists, hacktivists, and hackers,” according to the VPN’s about page (go. macworld.com/abpg). It then became its own entity with a dedicated company around 2012.
Currently AirVPN offers connections in 21 countries, with 240 servers. Anyone who wants to see the status of all of AirVPN’s servers can head to the Status page (go. macworld.com/stpg) on the company’s website. Here you’ll see each server location to the city level, current load, and even the number of users on that server. At the top of the page there are some even more interesting topics such as the top 10 user speeds, the 10 servers with the highest amount of user traffic, and the top 10 user session times. There’s also a pendingissues section showing servers with any issues. You can see, for example, that the Ross server located in Montreal is experimenting with the ChaCha20 cipher.
This is an amazing amount of transparency from a VPN service, and power users will appreciate the data.
SECURITY, SOFTWARE, SERVERS, AND SPEED
AirVPN displays what it uses for VPN connections on its Technical Specs page (go.macworld.com/tcpg). Here we can see that AirVPN uses OpenVPN as the protocol, and only OpenVPN. AirVPN tells us it is experimenting with WireGuard, but it won’t put the newer protocol into production until some of the technical and privacy concerns it has are addressed. You can read more about the issues in this AirVPN forum post (go.macworld.com/arfp).
AirVPN’s Data encryption uses AES256-GCM by default, and the specs page displays the order of negotiation for other ciphers. The control channel default is TLS-DHE-RSA-WITH-AES-256-GCMSHA384.
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TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR PASSWORDS USING iCLOUD KEYCHAIN ON YOUR iPHONE, iPAD, & MAC
IT’S MORE POWERFUL THAN YOU THINK.
WINDOWS 10 ON M1 MACS: WHAT YOU CAN DO (VIRTUALIZATION, SORTA) AND CAN'T (BOOT CAMP)
VIRTUALIZATION IS KEY, BUT THE LACK OF A CONSUMER VERSION OF MICROSOFT’S M1 -COMPATIBLE OS KEEPS THE SITUATION IN DOUBT.
Solutions to your most vexing Mac problems.
AirVPN: Excellent service that power users will love
An excellent service with a known history, a solid network, and very good speeds.
AIRPODS MAX: OPULENT AUDIO THAT SHOULDN'T COST SO MUCH
APPLE’S HIGH-END HEADPHONES LOOK, SOUND, AND FEEL GREAT, BUT THE PRICE ISN’T RIGHT.
Tribit XFree Go headphone: Amazing sound, great price, and one glaring flaw
These cans sound like headphones that cost three or four times as much, but the controls on not one but two review units locked up after an hour or so of sustained use.
INPUT DEVICE: LOGITECH MX MASTER 3 MOUSE: LOGITECH STICKS WITH A WINNING FORMULA
I have two desktop Mac setups, one at home and one at the Macworld office (ah, going to the office, those were the days).
What we’re raving about this month
Bluesound Powernode 2i (with HDMI): Bodacious sound from a micro-sized box
This self-amplified multiroom music streamer delivers high-res audio experiences that Sonos won’t, but Bluesound’s user experience isn’t nearly as polished.
Aukey EP-N5: Entry-level ANC that gets it (mostly) right
Good sound and decent active noise canceling for a wallet-friendly price.
THE ITALIAN JOB
After 107 years, Di Pasquale’s finds a new home in Brewers Hill.
A SMALL PEARL ON LAKE COMO | MONTE SAN PRIMO
In 2019 I was working on an art project in Bellagio, Italy. This small pearl on Lake Como is dominated by a mountain called Monte San Primo.
Let's Get Physical
Having long marveled at the technology of the high-end workout equipment on the high seas, Porthole goes all in on putting together a home fitness center.
FREAKED-OUT CRUISE TAKES CONTROL!
Gets COVID-proof movie set after wild virus rant
SAVING LITTLE ITALY
THE ICONIC ETHNIC NEIGHBORHOOD HAS OUTLASTED ALL OF BALTIMORE’S OLD-WORLD ENCLAVES. NOW IT FACES ITS GREATEST CHALLENGE IN MORE THAN A CENTURY.
The lesser-known northeastern region of Friuli Venezia Giulia boasts unspoiled vistas and sail-friendly waters
During a pandemic, flexibility is key
The wheelhouse was scattered with guidebooks extolling the virtues and sites to behold in and around the Baltic — fjords in Sweden and Norway, Danish in Denmark, history-laden Poland, and enough lager to sink a barge in Germany.
POETIC LANDSCAPES:DITA JACOBOVITZ
Most of my landscape paintings are from my Residential area and from north Italy. I use various techniques, but mostly Oil on canvas. I decided several years ago that I will not try to reach the reality; I am trying to put the colors and shapes as I view them; sometimes, the place is the exactly the same spot, but the artworks are so different." - Dita Jacobovitz
OLD WORLD ITALIAN: RECIPES & SECRETS FROM OUR TRAVELS IN ITALY - A COOKBOOK