Privacy is paramount, and your PC’s location isn’t hard to find for anyone with your IP address. However, you can make a few changes and have the computer report that you are in a different location. There are a number of different ways to do this, so choose what works best for your particular situation.
Why should I change the computer location?
Much of the Internet is personalized to your exact specifications. It’s something we see every day: start shopping for a new motherboard and suddenly every ad in your sidebar suggests the newest and greatest motherboard. Everything you do online is tracked and then used to make recommendations that may be of interest to you.
One of the most important pieces of information these systems collect is your location. It can be used to personalize ads, recommend local businesses, and even tell you the weather. Usually, this information is collected from the IP address you connect to different websites.
Changing your PC’s location can give you a number of different benefits:
- You can access region-locked services. For example, some people want to use a streaming service while traveling but can’t access their content because of their location. If you change your IP correctly, the system assumes you are in the right place and delivers the content to you.
- You will have access the same ads and recommendations as the locals while you are browsing under a wrong location. For instance, it can help you find cool restaurants and places to go when you’re planning a trip.
- Privacy is the most important benefit that changing your PC location gives you. Since most methods of changing your location involve changing your IP, you’ll get plenty of privacy protection, so the website you’re connecting to doesn’t automatically narrow down to where you live. right away.
Consider your reasons before embarking on relocating your PC. Some options work better than others, depending on your particular situation.
How to change computer location
Decide if you want to set your own computer’s location, or you want websites outside your network to think you’re somewhere else, too.
Change location on Windows
Windows doesn’t exactly allow you to change your location all the time. It uses a variety of information to locate your PC. However, you can change the default location it uses when it doesn’t know a more precise location. This can give you some privacy or give you the information you want no matter where you use your computer.
- Press Windows key +.
- Choose Setting.
- Click Privacy.
- Choose Location.
- Click Set default in the Default Location header.
- Enter your desired location in the box.
- Select the correct option from the drop-down menu.
- Close the window.
You can always go back and set a new default location as you wish. You can also choose to disable the Windows Location service in the Location area if you wish.
Use a VPN to change your location
The best way to change your PC’s location is to use a virtual private network. Basically, all your Internet traffic is redirected through a remote server in a specific place. The website or service you connect to will see it as if you were coming from that location.
One of the most important aspects of choosing a VPN to change your PC location is its remote servers. Some VPNs may offer just a few, or may take you to a fixed location for whichever service has the lowest traffic. Others will let you select a remote server from a specific location so you can connect to it and your traffic appears to be coming from that location.
For example, if I’m writing in Manhattan, I can connect to a VPN with a server located in Seattle. When I check my IP address and location, it looks like my computer is just outside of Seattle.
If you need a specific location, check out what each company has to offer before purchasing a service.
Here’s how to connect to a number of different VPNs, depending on which you choose to use.
- Launch NordVPN on your computer.
- Enter your user ID and password to log in.
- Click the map pin for the location you want to connect to.
- The connection will start automatically.
Free VPN for Chrome
- Add VeePN VPN Proxy to Chrome.
- Click puzzle icon near the address bar to see all your add-ons.
- Click pin icon near VPN Proxy VeePN to pin it to the address bar.
- Click the VeePN icon in your address bar.
- Click Continue and then click Begin.
- Tap the name of the selected country to choose from a list of server locations.
- Click the location you want to connect to.
- Click To go button to initiate proxy connection.
Each of these does about the same thing differently. Upgrading to a paid subscription will give you more options, but you can still change your location without spending money.
Some people use location spoofing software that reports to your computer an incorrect location set by you. While these are more popular on mobile apps to help with gameplay in other regions, you can still download them for PC. They can give you more control over where you appear.
You can also use them with a VPN for stronger computer location security.
App-specific location markers
There are a number of ways that different programs like browsers can use your current location even when you’re connected to a VPN. It’s not just your IP they’re looking for when geolocating you.
You can disable geolocation and block it on your browser or other apps. Make sure that no program has access to your location information in Settings and Location on your computer is also turned off.
You can also change the date and time to match the VPN server location from your taskbar.
frequently asked Questions
Can I get a free VPN?
Many services offer free VPNs. However, you may not get the fastest servers or the widest selection of locations if you don’t use a premium service.
Why does my computer think it’s in another city?
Sometimes the servers your ISP is using are not in your same city. You might even notice them change over time if you run a speed test, for example. Your location may be showing up as the location of the server you are using through your ISP.