How to set up OpenVPN on iOS (iPhone/iPad)


In this tutorial, you will learn how to set up the OpenVPN GUI app on your iOS device. This app is an alternative way of connecting to Surfshark servers.


You will need a device running the iOS operating system and an active Surfshark subscription, which you can purchase on our pricing page.


You will learn how to:


Get your credentials


Do not confuse these with your regular credentials - your email address and your password.


Here is how you can get your Surfshark credentials:

  1. Go to this page. This is the page where all details required for manual connection are stored.

    You may need to log in before proceeding to this page. In that case, enter your email address and your password, then click Log in.

    Select VPN -> Manual setup -> Credentials. You will find Surfshark service credentials there. It is a good idea to keep this page open for now. You will need these credentials a bit later.



Download configuration files


  1. Go to this page. It’s the same page where you have your Surfshark service credentials but click on the Locations tab instead where you will find all the configuration files.

  2. Download configuration files of your preferred location. If you wish to connect to Poland, download the Poland - Warsaw or Poland - Gdansk configuration file. If you prefer connecting to Finland, download the configuration file for Finland - Helsinki.

    Tap on the flag icon of your chosen location. Then select which file to download - UDP or TCP. Those are two different VPN protocols. We recommend the UDP protocol because it is usually faster, but feel free to read more about different protocols and decide yourself.


  3. Confirm this action by clicking Download UDP.



Install the App


  1. OpenVPN GUI app can only be downloaded from the Apple App Store. You can find it here.

  2. Click Get. You may need to confirm the installation with your Face ID or Touch ID.

    Once confirmed, the installation will begin.


  3. The installation will finish in a few moments. You can open the app then.

Add configuration profiles


You will need to import configuration files to the OpenVPN app. Here is how you can do that:

  1.  Go to the Files app on your iOS.

  2. Go to Recent files or browse files and go to the Downloads folder.

  3. You will find the newly downloaded Surfshark configuration file there. Tap on this file.


  4. Tap on the sharing icon in the bottom-left corner.


  5.  You will see a list of default apps where you can share the file. If you see the OpenVPN app icon there, tap on it. If the OpenVPN icon is not there, click More.


  6. Choose the OpenVPN app from the menu.


  7. After that, the imported configuration file will appear in the OpenVPN app.



Connect to the VPN


  1. Click Add below the imported profile.


  2. Enter Surfshark service credentials and click ADD.

    Do not confuse Surfshark service credentials with your regular credentials (email address and password) that you use to log into the Surfshark website. If you're not sure what credentials to use, refer to the "Get your credentials" part of this guide.


  3. Allow OpenVPN to add VPN configurations. This is necessary for OpenVPN to be able to create and manage the VPN tunnel on your device.


  4. You will see the connection status on the homepage of the OpenVPN app.

    You can quickly disconnect/reconnect to the VPN by toggling the green switch that you see at the top of your screen.


  5. To connect to a different location, you will need to download and import a new configuration file.

    Refer to the "Download configuration files" part of this guide if you're not sure how to do that.


Make sure your connection was successful


It's always recommended to check whether your connection was successful after setting up a VPN for the first time. This can be easily done by doing an IP leak test and a DNS leak test which is available on our website. Click here to find out how to make sure your connection was successful.


Congratulations - you have successfully installed and configured the OpenVPN app! As long as you’re connected, your location is private and your sensitive data is secure.



You may also be interested in:

  1. How to make sure if my connection was successful?
  2. iOS slow speed troubleshooting
  3. iOS unstable connection troubleshooting
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