How to Configure a Proxy Server on Windows: Every advanced computer user must know how to configure a proxy server. There are various reasons why a user would need to set up a proxy server. It is a way to direct your traffic through a proxy server. In simple terms, all the data that you will transmit now will go through an intermediate proxy server. Generally, you can use a proxy to access remote systems if your school or office has it configured. A lot of users use it as a safety measure to hide their IP Address from the hackers and intruders. You can also access geo-blocked websites that are not accessible in your country, using a proxy server. In this article, we will learn how to configure a proxy server on different versions of Windows Operating System.
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There are different applications that let you access the internet such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Edge etc. These settings will be applicable to all such applications. Some applications like Mozilla Firefox overrides your system proxy settings and lets you set up its own proxy settings. Here is how to setup proxy server in Windows 10, Windows 8 and Windows 7. We will start with the latest version of the Windows.
How to Configure a Proxy Server on Windows 8 and 10
To configure a proxy server on Windows 8 and higher, you will need to find the Proxy Settings. The simplest way is to go to the search option and type “Proxy”. Alternatively, you can go to Settings > Network & Internet > Proxy in Windows 10. For Windows 8, you will find the same option in PC Settings > Network Proxy. You need to remember that these settings are not applicable when you are connected to a Virtual Private Network (VPN). You can apply these settings only if you are connecting to the internet via Wi-Fi or Ethernet.
Automatically detect settings to Configure a Proxy Server
Windows has an option of “Automatically detect settings” that is meant to detect any proxy setting available on your network. Windows accomplish this using Web Proxy Auto-Discovery Protocol, or WPAD. You will particularly find this option handy in a situation where you have multiple PCs in a network such as in the case of a school or an organization. The school may provide the proxy settings to all the system connected to the network. WPAD will allow every system on the network to configure automatically and use the available proxy.
The option of “Automatically detect settings” can be turned off from the settings of you want to set up proxy settings manually. This will avoid your system to detect any proxy settings automatically.
The “Use setup script” for Configure a Proxy Server
Sometimes, proxy settings may not be available and thus your PC will not be able to detect any settings. In such cases, you will need to set the proxy manually. Firstly, you will need to turn on the option of “Use setup script” just below the option of “Automatically Detect Settings”. Now, you can enter the network address in the “Script address” box below and “Save” it. The network address you enter is also called as .PAC file. You can get the network address from your proxy provider or organization.
You can also configure a Proxy Server manually by going to Manual Proxy Setup and enabling the option of “Use a proxy server”. Here you will need to enter the Address and Port of the proxy server. You can obtain the same from your organization or school.
Once you have set up the proxy settings, all your traffic will go through the proxy server. If you may not want to use a proxy for accessing some particular web address or addresses, you may include in the box below. By default, you will find *.local in the box. * is used as a wild card. It means that anything that ends with .local such as database.local, server.local etc is included. You can add any number of addresses in this box separated by a semicolon ( ; ) and a space. For example, if you do not want to use the proxy for mobiviki.com, you will need to enter:
You can bypass proxy server for all the computers connected to the local network by checking the option “Don’t use the proxy server for local (intranet) addresses”. This will apply proxy not only to the internet but also to the intranet. Press “Save” before closing the window to apply the settings.
How to Configure a Proxy Server on Windows 7
We need to follow slightly different steps to configure a proxy server on Windows 7. Here, you will need to go to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Internet Options. Select the “Connections” tab and click on “LAN Settings”. Here you will find that the option of “Automatically detect settings” is enabled by default. You can uncheck it to prevent Windows from detecting and connecting to available proxy automatically.
You can configure a proxy server manually by selecting the option “Use a proxy server for your LAN”. However, you will need to enter port and address of the network that you wish to use as the proxy. You have to get these details beforehand from the organization which is providing you the proxy server. Once you have set up the proxy successfully, all the traffic will go through the entered proxy server. This includes all the local networks (intranet) as well as the internet. You can disable proxy for all the local networks by enabling the “Bypass proxy server for local addresses” checkbox.
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Using the Advance option to Configure a Proxy Server
The user might also want to set up a few advanced options while looking to configure a proxy server. You can find these options by clicking on “Advanced” button. The option of “Use the same proxy server for all protocols” is enabled by default. If you want to use a separate proxy for different protocols, uncheck this option and enter the required details.
There is a box below that allows you to enter certain addresses for which you do not want the proxy to apply. By default, you will find *.local in the box. * is used as a wild card. It means that anything that ends with .local such as database.local, server.local etc is included. You can add any number of addresses in this box separated by a semicolon ( ; ) and a space. For example, if you do not want to use the proxy for mobiviki.com, you will need to enter:
Do not forget to save the settings before closing the box. If you face any kind of problem in setting up a proxy server on any Windows version, let us know in comment section.