Windows 10 offers the ability to easily setup a proxy server with the use of its Settings app and without the need to use a third-party software. This feature, that actually made its first appearance in Windows 8.1's touch-friendly PC Settings app, will allow you to protect your online privacy by covering some of your tracks when surfing the web. The proxy server, that acts as an intermediary between your computer and the Internet, will then be used to access online content by Microsoft's Edge browser, Internet Explorer and other web browsers, as well as the universal apps from Windows 10's Store. So read on to learn how to configure and use proxy servers in Windows 10:
Where To Find Proxy Options In The Settings App
Before you can configure a proxy server, you have to open the Settings app. If you have any problems in finding or opening this application, read this guide: Introducing Windows 10: 6 ways to open Settings.
In the newly opened window, click or tap on the section labeled Network & Internet.
In the Network & Internet window, you will find seven subsections in the left-side column and you have to click or tap on Proxy.
The options available in this subsection are similar to those found in Windows 8.1's PC Settings app, but they are easier to modify thanks to the simplified touch enabled design of the Settings app. In the main Proxy area you will be able to find two separate sections that can be configured: "Automatic proxy setup" and "Manual proxy setup".
How To Setup A Proxy Server With An Automatic Setup Script
Normally, before you can start setting up a proxy server in Windows 10, you will need to find a few good proxy addresses that you can use. Many of theseproxy servers have an URL that is similar to any normal website (e.g. proxy.example.org). Still, you should know that proxy services greatly differ in terms of quality and you will need a lot of patience in order to find one that works well with your online habits and Internet connection. Also, you will learn that some of these proxy servers require you to specify the address of a configuration script that has to be loaded by Windows 10.
If your mind is set on using this type of proxy server, you will have to access the "Automatic proxy setup" section from the above mentioned Proxy area. Here, you will first need to check if the automatic detection of proxy settings is enabled and then turn the "Use setup script" switch to On. Finally, you need to type the URL of the proxy in the Script address field from the bottom of the "Automatic proxy setup" section.
After you are done configuring, be sure to save your modifications by clicking or tapping the Save button.
How To Manually Setup A Proxy Server In Windows 10
If you want to manually configure a proxy, first make sure that the switch next to "Automatically detect settings" and "Use setup script" from the "Automatic proxy setup" section are turned Off.
Then, in the Manual proxy setup section you will need to turn the "Manual proxy server" switch to On.
The manual configuration of a proxy requires you to have a specific IP address and port for the server that you want to use. After you obtain this information, you will have to enter it in the Address and Port fields.
Then, you can also enter in specific Web addresses for which, no matter what browser you prefer, the proxy server will not be used. It seems to be a great way to configure which websites can see your information when you visit them.
Finally, you can click or tap on the checkbox that says "Don't use the proxy server for local (intranet) addresses" on the bottom of the "Manual proxy setup" section. While it is not necessary to always do this, still, it seems to be a good idea to check this box if you are connected to a corporate network.
Of course, be sure to click or tap on the Save button after you are done manually configuring a proxy server. Shortly after you save the proxy server characteristics, you will be able to browse the Internet through it. Also, if you are not sure if the proxy server is working, it is possible check its status on websites like Find My IP.
How To Turn Off The Use Of A Proxy Server In Windows 10
If you have taken your device to a new location and you use a new Internet connection, you can easily turn off the use of the proxy server. To do this, you will have to follow the above mentioned path: "Settings -> Network&Internet -> Proxy".
If you have enabled a proxy with an automatic setup script, be sure to set both "Automatically detect settings" and "Use setup script" switches to Off.
For a manually configured proxy, all you need to do is to set the Use a proxy server switch to Off.
You should remember that your proxy settings are stored by Windows 10 and you can always turn them on if the network you are using is not so secure.
Proxy servers represent a reasonable solution for hiding your online activity. Luckily for us, Windows 10 offers a simple and intuitive way to setup a proxy server in the new Settings app. It truly represents an evolution of the way Windows powered computers connect to the Internet. If you have already used this Windows 10 feature do not hesitate to share your experience using the comments form below. Also, let us know if you are encountering any problems that you cannot solve.