Raspberry Pi 4B w Heatsink

With NordVPN’s Meshnet, you can set up a personal private network for all your devices to connect no matter where they are in the world – including a Raspberry Pi.

A Raspberry Pi lets you customise and design your own small computer, allowing you to programme and use a wide selection of software and applications. This includes NordVPN and all its features, such as Meshnet.

This guide will help you install Meshnet on Raspberry Pi and explain an easy way to download and install the NordVPN app, log on, and get connected.

Does Meshnet work on Raspberry Pi?

NordVPN’s Meshnet works on a variety of platforms, including Linux. A Raspberry Pi uses its own operating system known as Raspberry Pi OS, which is based on a Debian version of Linux. Since you can download and install NordVPN for Linux, Meshnet will work on a Raspberry Pi.

However, the NordVPN Linux app doesn’t have a graphical user interface (GUI). Instead of clicking icons or buttons like on Windows or macOS, you need to enter commands via the Linux Terminal window.

How to install Meshnet on Raspberry Pi

You will need to type in commands on the Raspberry Pi Terminal to install NordVPN and start using Meshnet. 

Follow the steps below to get started.

  1. Update your Raspberry Pi

    Start by updating your Raspberry Pi’s OS so you have the latest packages and security updates. Open a terminal window and enter the following commands:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt upgrade

  2. Download the NordVPN Linux client

    You can download the NordVPN Linux client by typing the following command:

    sh <(curl -sSf https://downloads.nordcdn.com/apps/linux/install.sh)

    If you don’t have a curl package and the command doesn’t work, type in the following command instead:

    h <(wget -qO - https://downloads.nordcdn.com/apps/linux/install.sh)

    Once done, follow the instructions to download and install the client.

  3. Create a NordVPN account and log in

    You can create a free NordVPN account by heading to its main website.

    Once done, log in by typing:

    nordvpn login

  4. Turn on Meshnet

    To turn on Meshnet on your device, type in this command:

    nordvpn set meshnet on

    You don’t need to connect to a VPN server in order to turn on Meshnet. However, if you want to use a VPN, type in:

    nordvpn connect
    or
    nordvpn c

That’s it. You can connect up to 10 personal devices and up to 50 external devices. Now, you’ll be able share files, route traffic, and connect to other devices to your Raspberry Pi.

What is a Raspberry Pi?

A Raspberry Pi is a small, single-board computer that can be used for a wide variety of tasks. It is a great way to learn about computers, electronics, and programming or create a customisable machine.

Raspberry Pis are typically about the size of a credit card and are powered by a small ARM chip. They have a variety of ports and connections, including HDMI, Ethernet, USB, and CSI (camera serial interface).

They are open-source hardware, meaning anyone can design and manufacture their own boards. This has led to a wide variety of Raspberry Pi clones and accessories that can be used in plenty of ways. 

Raspberry Pi OS on computer

Raspberry Pis are relatively easy to use and can be set up with a simple operating system called Raspberry Pi OS (originally Raspbian). Raspberry Pi OS is based on Debian Linux, an operating system for desktop computers.

Created by the Raspberry Pi Foundation (Ltd), they are widely used to learn about coding. However, they can also be used to develop robots and control motors and sensors, automate device tasks, play retro games from consoles like the NES, and more.

Can you use Meshnet for free?

While Meshnet is part of NordVPN and needs the app installed on each device, you don’t need a NordVPN subscription in order to use it.

Meshnet is a free feature that can be used by up to 10 personal devices and up to 50 external devices from other trusted users. It’s available on multiple platforms, including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS.

Once you have a NordVPN account, you can turn on the feature and start connecting your devices at no charge.

Why should I use Meshnet?

Using Meshnet comes with a host of advantages, especially if you have multiple devices in different locations, need to change your device’s IP address, or want to play multiplayer games via a LAN party.

Not only can you quickly and securely share files between devices with Meshnet enabled, but you can also access features available on both devices. As an example, let’s say you need to access a file that’s on your laptop at home, but you’re on vacation or in a different location. Using Remmina or another Linux remote desktop client, you can quickly get this file on a device that’s on you.

Another advantage is using software on a device you don’t have at hand. If you have a smart home setup and can only control apps through devices at home, you can use them remotely on another connected device. This means you can control the temperature through a smart home thermostat, turn on lights, and more.

the best VPNs for gaming

The feature is also a valuable tool for gamers. Since it acts as a LAN but on a much broader scale, you can play multiplayer games that support LAN with others using the same internet connection no matter where they are in the world.

Much like a VPN, Meshnet can swap IP addresses and access geo-blocked websites or streaming libraries by essentially making your devices VPN servers. For example, with your smartphone, you can use the same IP address as your laptop at home in New Zealand while on holiday in the UK. This means websites and streaming services like Netflix will think you’re accessing the web in New Zealand instead. However, since this is still an IP address dedicated to you, this won’t make you anonymous online.

For those who travel and have multiple devices, Meshnet is a great tool to have.

Darragh Murphy
Darragh Murphy is fascinated by all things bizarre, which usually leads to assorted coverage varying from the mischievous world of online security to washing machines designed for earbuds. Whether it's connecting Scar from The Lion King to two-factor authentication or turning his love for laptops into a fabricated rap battle from 8 Mile, he believes there’s always a quirky spin to be made. When he's not checking out the latest devices and all things tech, he can be found swimming laps, watching terrible shark movies, and trying to find time to game.  Previous Editor at Laptop Mag and News Editor at Time Out Dubai, specialising in food culture, nightlife events, gaming, tech and entertainment.

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