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Surfshark background service is not running

If you get this error when trying to start the Surfshark app or connect to a server, that means that the background service of Surfshark was unable to start for some reason. Therefore, the app can not function properly. 

Most of the time, this issue can be solved with just a couple of adjustments. Here is what you should try:

  • If you have some anti-virus software running,  temporarily disable it.

    Alternatively, you can make an exclusion for Surfshark in the settings of the anti-virus app. Here's an example of how that can be done on Avast anti-virus.

  • Restart your computer.

    Restarting your device will close all the idle apps and their background processes that might be running and interfering with Surfshark.

  • Restore the original settings of your Surfshark app.

    To do that, open the Surfshark app, go to Settings -> Help -> Diagnostics -> Restore original settings. This will give your app a fresh start and likely fix the background service issue. 


  • Reinstall your Surfshark app.

    Sometimes, during the initial installation, some files might fail to install. This could happen for various reasons, e.g., anti-virus software forbidding the installation or some changes in your system during the installation process.

    Please try reinstalling your Surfshark app. Uninstall it first, then download the app from here and install it again.



If you're still having trouble with the app or have any further questions, our customer success team will help you 24/7 over live chat or email.


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