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Can't Connect to Internet without VPN Mac Problem: Best Solutions

Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller – Tech Enthusiast & Security Expert – January 7th, 2023

can't connect to internet without VPN Mac

Most of the complaints from users who started using a VPN on Mac were related to their inability that they can’t connect to internet without VPN on Mac. You might wish to learn more about the possible causes and solutions to this issue. However, not utilizing a VPN is not an option because it is so important for your online security. Without a doubt, VPNs are quite helpful. Though there were scarcely any VPN users a few years ago, the number of users is growing daily. More individuals are using VPNs as more and more people become aware of them.

The first and most significant benefit of utilizing a VPN is its safety feature, if your Mac cannot connect to a VPN, you are not browsing the internet securely. Even if you only use the internet to enjoy yourself or to transmit crucial documents and information. VPN is necessary, but you’ll become upset if you encounter problems. But not all the time, you will need VPN, and here you should know how to get rid of it.

Keep reading the article to learn more about resolving this issue on a Mac and further recommendations

Can't Connect to Internet without VPN Mac Problem: Best Solutions

Using a VPN on Mac Device

In addition to their elegant design and outstanding performance, Apple Mac computers are known for having great inbuilt security. And there is where many folks initially become perplexed about whether or not a VPN, which we mostly utilize for internet security, is required on a Mac. Your data is sent over an encrypted tunnel to a secure server to mask your IP address and internet activity, which is one of the main purposes of a VPN. And in this case, Mac has nothing to keep you safe.

With more assaults occurring yearly, staying secure online appears to be increasingly difficult. Here is an example of why internet landscape security is so important: Every day, 30,000 websites are compromised worldwide. At least one type of cyber assault got experienced by 64% of businesses globally. In only 2021, there were 22 billion records that were compromised.

Therefore, in light of these realities, you would desire a VPN to provide the protection you require. You’ll probably be safe without a VPN if you use your laptop mostly at home on your internet network, but if you use your Mac at a public cafe or on any other public Wi-Fi, you run the risk of being in trouble. It will be quite helpful even if you use Netflix over a VPN to get around the limitations.

The usage of a VPN adds security levels, but keep in mind that it has nothing to do with the security features built into Macs, and you’ll need both for full protection.

VPN Problems With The Internet - Can't Connect To Internet Without VPN On Mac

Since a VPN acts as a layer between your Mac and the internet, improper configuration might lead to many problems. Whether your VPN is on or off, you are not alone if you are experiencing internet problems. As mentioned, certain Mac users cannot access the internet without a VPN

There are several likely workarounds for this issue, some of which are mostly network configuration-related. When VPNs malfunction, you need to find a fix very away, or you risk opening yourself up to hackers and other cybercriminals seeking easy targets.

Furthermore, this issue may occasionally affect Mac users exclusively since many have complained that they cannot connect without a VPN even if they have a router with two computers, one Mac and the other Windows. 

Despite changing the ethernet cable and router port, the same router still does not function with Macs. Mac does not function with the same port or cable as Windows. Therefore, when users activate the VPN app, they can’t connect to internet without VPN on Mac Here are some potentially effective solutions you can try:

Network Diagnostics

A network diagnostics tool for Mac gets already included in the macOS operating system. Use Wireless Diagnostics to examine the network’s internet connection anytime you cannot connect to your Wi-Fi router or experience problems loading websites or sending or receiving email. 

After thoroughly examining and completing the analysis, you get provided with a summary of the problems found, potential fixes, and details on Wi-Fi best practices. Instead of altering your network settings, it only detects and provides solutions. It also creates a compressed file with information that can be helpful to your network administrator or  IT support staff.

Click the Wi-Fi status symbol in the menu bar on macOS, then select Open Wireless Diagnostics to get diagnostics. After the analysis, you may learn more about each item in the list by clicking the Info buttons in the Summary window. Once you have the information about the problem, you can change the network settings accordingly and fix the problem of can’t connect to internet without vpn on Mac

DNS Settings On Your Mac

Domain name system, or DNS, is a method of connecting to websites by comparing human-readable domain names. Because of DNS servers, individuals need to remember the names of websites rather than complicated IP addresses.

Sometimes Your current DNS settings on your Mac are most likely the cause of your inability to access the internet. The DNS address is detected and utilized when the VPN is activated. However, when you disable the VPN, that DNS is not recognized, and you cannot access the internet. To resolve the problem, you must verify the DNS settings here with the following instructions

  • Select system settings from the Mac Menu bar.
  • Click the “advanced” button under network after making sure WIFI gets chosen.
  • Toggle to the DNS tab. You should see a greyed-out DNS address in this window, particularly your router and internet connection.

Any DNS addresses that you have that are not white or grayed out get manually added. To solve your internet problem, you need to take a closer look at them and maybe get rid of them. You may also consider Google’s DNS as an option because it is the most popular public DNS and a potential fix for the internet’s issues.

As a consequence, your network problem ought to get resolved.

VPN Settings

Due to the possibility of connectivity difficulties with your Apple devices when using a VPN or other third-party software that observes or interacts with your network connections. Some VPN setup profiles or applications may have settings or limitations that affect the connection. 

Check your device’s applications to determine whether these apps or settings profiles get already installed. Open the VPN application on your smartphone, then select the Settings tab. The default gateway settings are what you should use.

To change the settings, you will need more information from the VPN manufacturer, which you can mostly find on their website. If Wi-Fi does not operate with your internet. After everything gets configured, you can check to see if your server could have a problem that prohibits you from connecting to the internet. Instead, try selecting a different server

If the issue is still there even after altering the setting. You may also just remove your VPN as another option. Like any other Mac software, you may remove this one from your computer. You might wish to get additional information about how the app interacts with your network and whether it might affect connectivity from the app developer before you uninstall any software.

You may find instructions on uninstalling applications and settings profiles on the official website.

Boot into Safe Mode

Safe Boot mode is a unique feature of macOS. You can determine whether problems get brought on by software that loads when your Mac starts up by starting it up in safe mode. Start in Safe Mode as directed by testing the issue’s persistence by starting your Mac in safe mode with Apple Support. Reboot typically, then repeat the test. Usually, it takes between three and five minutes.

It will check your starting disk, try fixing any directory problems, and load just the necessary kernel extensions. It also deletes font caches, kernel caches, and other system cache files and stops Startup Items and Login Items from launching automatically.

After that, usually restart and rerun the test.

Update Your Mac & Router

Use Software Update to install updates and improvements for Safari and other built-in programs on macOS. The software on your Mac must get updated, and the time and date must get set correctly. You could experience difficulties using the internet without that. You can manually set the date and time on your computer or utilize a network time server to do it automatically.

If the date and time are current on Mac. Next, see whether you can access the Wi-Fi router for the network. As advised by the router’s manufacturer, you should upgrade the router’s firmware as needed. Use Apple’s suggested Wi-Fi router and access point settings, and restart the router if necessary.

Solving the Issue of Can't Connect to Internet without VPN on Mac: Bottom Line

Anyone trying to monitor you can’t find you since a VPN covers your IP address and offers an encrypted server. And it makes no difference if you use Windows or even a Mac to achieve it. But occasionally, regardless of the OS, you may get VPN-related failures because it is dealing with your network directly, and sometimes incorrect settings might result in unforeseen issues.

Because you can’t just stop using VPN or can’t use VPN all the time, I have outlined some excellent options that you may utilize to resolve the issue. If you’re unsure what to do, the usual rule of thumb regarding access control and network security is to start with the default settings. If you become confused, you can seek expert IT assistance. Try changing other protocol settings, but remember that if you use a premium VPN service, the chances of experiencing serious VPN issues are quite slim.

But perhaps, after following all of the above instructions, you will be able to resolve the issues; if not, you should seek assistance from your retailer or local computer store. Because a minor configuration error might result in an issue you hadn’t anticipated. Finally, if you can’t fully resolve the issue following the guidance in the post above, I advise backing up your data, wiping your Mac, and starting over from scratch.

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Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller

IT Consultant at Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller is an IT Consultant for Online Cloud Security and has over 7 years of experience in the Information Technology space. He also specializes in repairing laptops & computers. In his spare time, he loves to talk about new technologies and hosts monthly IT and Cyber Security meetings in the Houston area.

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About Online Cloud Security:

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

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Online Cloud Security Logo (500x500px)

About Online Cloud Security

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

Recent Posts: