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What is a proxy server and what is it differences from VPN

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What is a proxy server and what is it differences from VPN

What is a proxy server and what is it differences from VPN

28.10.2022

Internet

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Today we will talk about technology that guarantees anonymity and allows you to view blocked pages on the Internet.

Earlier we talked about another technology with similar tasks — VPN. We would like to note that such information is not published as a guide to circumventing the law, but for informational purposes :)

How a proxy server works

A standard Internet connection involves the exchange of a large amount of data. The user not only receives, but also sends a stream of information, such as his IP address or geolocation. Based on this data, content blocks are set.

To access sites or services anonymously, you need to do so indirectly. Alternatively, use an intermediate proxy server. With it, you can hide your address and location, avoiding blocking.

What are proxy servers

  1. CGI (Common Gateway Interface) are the simplest proxy servers. In order to use this technology, the user needs to go to a specific site and through it go to the desired address on the Internet. Advantages: ease of use, no need to configure or install anything. Disadvantages: works only in one tab, does not always display pages correctly.
  2. HTTP (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol) — Proxies that work with the HyperText Transfer Protocol. A more convenient tool for fully performing anonymous operations in browsers. Advantages: sites are displayed correctly, works in all tabs of all browsers. Disadvantages: to start you need to set special settings.
  3. SHTTP — similar to the previous type of servers, which additionally support SSL encryption. Advantages: in addition to the above, they allow you to access SSL-protected sites. Disadvantages: also needs to be configured.
  4. SOCKS4, SOCKS5 — proxy servers with support for various additional protocols. Used if it is necessary to set up an anonymous connection for applications.

Differences from VPN

We can say that a proxy server is a «light version» of a VPN to ensure anonymity on the network. Both technologies will allow you to avoid blocking and mask the user's address, but the proxy server cannot guarantee complete anonymity. VPN is a more technically advanced tool that is designed to encrypt and protect the entire stream of transmitted data (not just addresses).

Note! If you are interested in a fast service without restrictions, you need to use paid versions. It doesn't matter if you choose a VPN or a proxy server.

However, a paid proxy will be significantly cheaper than a paid VPN due to a smaller set of features.

Proxy servers in practice

There are many lists and ratings of HTTP(S) servers. Members of the lists change due to the fact that the leaders do not always cope with a large number of visitors.

Please note that in order to establish a connection, you will need to copy the server's IP address and port into the system settings (see below for how to set up the system).

The CGI server can be found just by request «anonymizer»

Connecting through a proxy/VPN affects the connection speed: it decreases due to the fact that data during the exchange has to go a long way due to the addition of one more address. Also, as for any software, we recommend to use paid programs whose developers are responsible for their work and constantly release updates.

Setting up an HTTP proxy on Windows

Windows 8 and 10

«Start» — «Settings» — «Network and Internet» — «Proxy»
«Manual proxy settings» — «Manually use proxies»
Enter the port and address — «Save»

Windows 7 and earlier

«Control Panel» — «Form properties» — «Connections» — «Network Settings»
«Use a proxy server»
Enter the address and port — «ОК»

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