Windows 11 Subsystem for Android will now play nicely with your VPN

VPN on laptop screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Windows 11 Insiders will now be able to link a VPN IP address with their Android apps, thanks to a new update to Windows Subsystem for Android (WSA).

The upgrade will allow WSA Windows 11 users to run Android apps either natively or via X86 emulation, depending on your machine’s performance. 

However, if you’re thinking of using this feature to get around government censorship, hide your tracks online, (or just access Netflix in a different region) you’ll need to make sure the “Advanced Networking feature” is enabled within your Windows 11 Subsystem for Android settings.

VPN and more

VPN compatibility is not the only new feature that Microsoft was able to announce for WSA.

The company also unveiled fixes for scrolling with the trackpad in apps, enabling IPv6 connectivity, AV1 codec support, and updates to Chromium WebView 101

Microsoft was also able to introduce graphics-related fixes, such as app flickering and graphics corruption, and new features so that Android windows marked secure can no longer be screenshotted

However the company did point out that some VPNs may not work with the new networking features.

Trying the new additions out, Bleeping Computer reported that it couldn’t connect with popular VPN NordVPN after installing the update

If you use a VPN and find your Android apps do not have network connectivity, Microsoft advises you to disable “Advanced Networking" in the WSA Settings app.

Still not happy?

If you have feedback about WSA you can file it via going to the Feedback Hub under “Apps > Windows Subsystem for Android”.

The latest update could be music to the ears of Android users in countries such as Russia, where the demand for VPNs has recently skyrocketed, with daily downloads of the 10 most popular VPNs rising from about 15,000 in mid-February to 475,000 in March.

  • Interested in hiding your online activity? Check out our guide to the best proxy services

Will McCurdy has been writing about technology for over five years. He has a wide range of specialities including cybersecurity, fintech, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, cloud computing, payments, artificial intelligence, retail technology, and venture capital investment. He has previously written for AltFi, FStech, Retail Systems, and National Technology News and is an experienced podcast and webinar host, as well as an avid long-form feature writer.