DD-WRT is custom firmware for routers which support the OpenVPN protocol and is available on a wide variety of routers. You can check if your router supports DD-WRT firmware here and learn how to install DD-WRT firmware on a router here.
This tutorial will show you how to set up an OpenVPN connection on your DD-WRT router using the OpenVPN client UI.
Alternative setup method:
1. In the DD-WRT Administrative Interface, navigate to Setup > Basic Setup. Under Network Address Server Settings (DHCP), set these NordVPN DNS addresses:
Static DNS 1: 18.104.22.168
Static DNS 2: 22.214.171.124
Static DNS 3: 0.0.0.0 (default)
Use DNSMasq for DHCP: Checked
Use DNSMasq for DNS: Checked
Then, Save and Apply settings.
If you're setting up two routers, you should change the second router’s local IP address to a different one from the main router's. (In this case, the main router's IP is 192.168.1.1, while the one you’re connecting to a NordVPN server is accessible via 192.168.2.1)
2. Navigate to Setup > IPV6. Set IPv6 to Disable, click Save, and then Apply Settings.
(this is a recommended step to make sure your IP doesn’t leak)
3. Navigate to Service > VPN. Under OpenVPN Client, set Start OpenVPN Client to Enable in order to see the options necessary for this configuration. Then set the following:
Server IP/Name: For the sake of this tutorial, we used us936.nordvpn.com, but you should connect to a server suggested to you at https://nordvpn.com/servers/tools/. You can find the server hostname right under the server title. Next, click on "Show available protocols" and download the UDP or TCP configuration file, which you will need later (steps 6-9).
Port: 1194 (or 443 for the TCP protocol)
Tunnel Device: TUN
Tunnel Protocol: UDP (or TCP)
Encryption Cipher: AES-256-CBC
Hash Algorithm: SHA-512
User Pass Authentication: Enable
Username, Password: Your NordVPN service credentials
First Data Cipher: Not set
Second Data Cipher: Not set
Third Data Cipher: Not set
Note: If the Username and Password fields are missing, fill in the remaining fields and proceed to step 3.1
You can find your NordVPN service credentials in the Nord Account dashboard. Copy the credentials by clicking the Copy buttons to the right of the credentials.
Advanced Options: Enable (this will enable additional options)
TLS Cipher: None
LZO Compression: Disable
The options not mentioned in this guide should be left with default values.
3.1. (Optional, depending on step 3.) If the Username and Password fields are missing, go to Administration > Commands and enter this code:
Replace YOURUSERNAME and YOURPASSWORD with your respective NordVPN service credentials. Click Save Startup and return to the previous VPN tab.
4. In the Additional Config box either enter or copy/paste these commands:
5. Open the OpenVPN configuration file you downloaded in Step 3 in any text editor of your preference (preferably WordPad or Notepad++, as regular notepad does not have the correct formatting).
6. When you open the .ovpn file of the server you chose (in our case, us936_nordvpn_com.udp.ovpn) in a text editor, you should see the <ca> part of the file (do NOT copy the <ca> and </ca> tags):
7. Copy its contents into the CA Cert field. Make sure the entire text gets pasted, including the
-----BEGIN CERTIFICATE----- and -----END CERTIFICATE----- lines.
8. Now go back to the configuration file and scroll down to the <tls-auth> part. Copy the contents of the TLS Key:
9. Paste the contents into the TLS Auth Key field. Make sure the entire text gets pasted in, including the
-----BEGIN OpenVPN Static key V1----- and -----END OpenVPN Static key V1----- lines.
10. After entering the data, click Save, and then Apply Settings.
11. To verify that the VPN is working, navigate to Status > OpenVPN
Under State, you should see the message "Client: CONNECTED SUCCESS".
Optional Kill Switch setup (for advanced users):
To create a kill switch, go to Administration > Commands and enter this script:
Select Save Firewall, go to Administration > Management > Reboot router.