How to Install and Set up NordVPN on Amazon Firestick or Fire TV for Kodi

How to Install and Set up NordVPN on Amazon Firestick or Fire TV for Kodi

The Amazon Firestick has revolutionized the way we stream media today. With such a simple device plugged into our TV and an internet connection, we can download endless media apps, like Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, Vudu, Kodi and the list goes on and on. Sure, there are other streaming sticks like Chromecast and Roku, but these don’t quite offer the same flexibility that the Fire operating system allows.

The ability to have developer options and develop apps, or install other developer’s apps on the stick makes it truly stand out from the crowd. That is where installing a VPN comes into play. We are able to install various VPNs to help keep us safe from prying eyes, especially now that net neutrality in the United States has been repealed. Internet service providers can begin tracking your every move and slow down or even shut off your connection entirely, if they choose to.

Why use a VPN?

This ties into what I wrote above about hiding information from your ISP and others. But there is more to it than that.

A VPN provides an extra layer of security on top of the Firestick. The Amazon Fire TV Stick runs on Fire OS, which is an Android-based operating system. Android is known to have more holes than its counterpart, iOS. Android allows developers to tinker around with it and build their own apps. So naturally, there are people who use that leeway to create malicious apps. If you connect through a VPN server before going to your final destination, the VPN server can intercept any malicious code sent your way and act as a blocker to people that are trying to access your network.

This is especially important if you are ever connected to Public WiFi. As soon as you do anything on Public Wifi, any hacker with a small amount of skill can intercept nearly everything you do with all the high-tech hacking software available these days. That could mean bank account passwords, email passwords, or anything else you might be logging into while on public wifi. Simply put, never use public wifi without a VPN unless an emergency.

Another great reason to use a VPN is if you are traveling to another country, but still want to catch a certain sporting event or your favorite TV show. If you leave your country, you can simply connect through a VPN server from your home country and then access any geo-restricted content you are looking for.

Will a VPN Slow Down my Connection?

The short answer is yes, but the long answer is a bit more complicated. Here’s the deal: if you want to stream HD TV shows and movies, I would recommend an absolute minimum of 10mbps, but preferably higher if possible. With standard definition, you can get away with lower.

I have tested a few different VPNs, such as NordVPN, IPVanish, VyprVPN, Overplay, and VPNArea. My home connection is running at 50mbps normally, and by going through a VPN, I lose on average 10mbps (20%). This will always vary though, because it depends how far away the server is. When I was in Germany and tested using a US connection, I was losing about 30% of my connection speed.

Having said all of that, my personal rule of thumb is that your connection speed should be a minimum of 15mbps, or 20 to be really safe, to stream HD quality through a VPN with no buffering, in the middle of your movie.

How to Install NordVPN on Firestick

If you have not purchased NordVPN yet, you will not be able to complete this tutorial.

Unsure of which VPN to try? Here is my comparison of the best VPN for Kodi and Firestick/Fire TV

There is not a lot of information out there on how to specifically install NordVPN on the Amazon Firestick. Nord VPN has a native Android app that can be downloaded from the Play Store, but it wasn’t specifically built to be used on the Firestick. So, here is a little tutorial so you can finally hide your IP details from your ISP and anyone else who might be watching, and watch your favorite Kodi apps. If you don’t have NordVPN yet, you can click here to sign up. Sometimes the special deal pops up to get it at $3.29/month, but if it doesn’t, at checkout you can enter the coupon code 2YDeal2017 to get it for $3.29/mo.

UPDATE 11/16/17: NordVPN has just released a 3-year deal for $2.75/month. Use coupon code 3ydeal.

UPDATE 01/23/18: It looks as though NordVPN isn’t really using the coupons anymore and these are now the standard prices.

If you are looking for Netflix specifically, I recommend you check out this post I wrote detailing the best VPNs that still work for Netflix. Netflix is a different beast because they specifically block VPNs so you need the correct one to get around that. Luckily, NordVPN is one of those that can still work.

I assume most people are here to use this VPN for Kodi and/or Netflix. That is what I personally use it for and highly recommend a VPN. People are getting arrested and fined in the UK right now because they are not concealing their identity. It is only a matter of time before that begins happening in the US and other parts of the world, if it isn’t already. So, without further ado here is how to install Nord VPN on FireStick/Fire TV.

Two Different Ways to Set Up NordVPN

There are two different ways you can install NordVPN onto your Firestick. The first way I will show you take a bit longer than the second way, but I have had more success with it in the long run. It also will work with other VPNs, not only NordVPN. You can use this exact process to use VyprVPN as well, and any others that support Open VPN and provide downloadable config files. The downside to the this method is that you must have an Android phone or tablet.

The second way, which is detailed below, is much quicker to set up and you don’t have to have an Android device to install it, but also involves using a mouse with your Firestick controller, which I found a little annoying. But hey, everyone has their personal preferences, so that’s why I have included the second tutorial.

Click here to go to the second tutorial

Tutorial #1 – Tools Needed for this Tutorial to Install NordVPN on Firestick:

NOTE: If you don’t have an Android device, you must use the second tutorial

  1. Amazon Firestick or Fire TV
  2. Android Phone or tablet
  3. Connection to the Internet
  4. NordVPN Subscription
  5. Make sure your phone is connected to the same wifi connection as your Firestick and not using 3g/4g

If you do not have an Android phone/tablet, I suggest you borrow one from a friend. Amazon Fire OS is built on top of Android so iPhone will not work here.


Step 1

First and foremost, if you haven’t already, make sure your Fire stick or TV is able to accept apps from unknown sources. This can be found under Settings > Device > Developer Options. Turn on Apps from Unknown Sources.

On your Amazon Firestick/TV – go to Search and type “Es file” then click on the word to search it.

That should bring up ES File Explorer. Download that app to your Firestick, but you do not need to open it yet.

Step 2

Then, pull out your trusty Android phone and navigate to the Play Store. You will search for and download three different apps here.

  • Open VPN for Android
  • Apps2Fire
  • Es File Explorer

Next step is to open “Apps2Fire” and find setup on the menu.

 

 

Enter the IP Address of your Amazon Firestick into the field. To find your Fire stick or Fire TV IP Address, go to your Firestick and navigate to Settings > Device > About > Network and you should see your IP Address there looking something like this. I have crossed mine out for security reasons.

 

firestick find ip address

Step 3

After you have connected you Firestick by entering in the IP address, you can now send the “OpenVPN for Android” app to your Firestick. Go to Local Apps on the top menu of “Apps2Fire” all the way on the left-hand side. Scroll down to find the OpenVPN app. Click it and then click install.

This will install it on your Amazon Fire stick TV. You should be able to see it from the list of apps  under Settings > Applications > Manage Installed Applications. No need to go to it yet. We will be doing that shortly. That is just to verify it is there.

Step 4

Now, on your Android phone, go to https://nordvpn.com/ovpn/ to find a list of configuration files. Each one is prefixed with a country code. For example, if you are a US citizen, or you want to make sure you have a US IP address then scroll down to the ones that start with “us”.

If you will notice, they have ones that have TCP and ones with UDP at the end. Try a TCP one first as TCP is typically a more reliable connection. If it isn’t working then go with a UDP. I have tried both and they both worked for me.

Step 5

Next, go to ES File Explorer on both your Android phone and your Firestick. For the phone, it will be in your “Apps” section and for the Firestick, go to Settings > Applications > Manage Installed Applications > ES File Explorer.

Go to your Android phone and inside the ES File Explorer, click the hamburger menu at the top left and go to Local > Download.

The server config file you downloaded moments ago from the NordVPN website should be there. Long press this (press and hold) to select it. Then down in the bottom right click “More” with the three dots and then click “Send”

 

Step 6

ES File Explorer will now search for another device on the network. Assuming you opened ES File Explorer on your Firestick/TV then you should see one device on your phone screen. Mine is labeled AFTM. Click on that device. Then look at your TV screen for a confirmation message and click “OK” to download the config file you are sending from your phone. Exit out of the application on your Firestick once it is downloaded. You do not need to go to the file or anything like that.

Step 7

On the Firestick, go back to Manage Installed Applications and Click on “OpenVPN for Android”.

At the to right click the little download icon with the down arrow.

 

 

If the “open from” dialog menu doesn’t open up immediately, click the menu on the top left and click internal storage. Your config file should be there. If it isn’t you may have saved it in a strange place, so click on ES File Explorer, which is right under Internal Storage and find the file in the folder you saved it in. Again, it should automatically go into internal storage.

Now just click the file to begin the process. Go to the opening screen of “OpenVPN for Android” and click profiles and then click on your VPN config file. You will need to login to your NordVPN account at some point here.

Then go to Settings at the top and you may want to check the boxes to automatically “Connect on Boot” and anything else you may want.

After that you should be connected and good to go. You may now use Kodi on a VPN, Prime TV, Netflix or anything else you use the FireStick or Fire TV for.

Tutorial #2 – Tools Needed for this Tutorial to Install NordVPN on Firestick:

  1. Amazon Firestick or Fire TV
  2. Connection to the Internet
  3. NordVPN Subscription

 

Step 1

First and foremost, if you haven’t already, make sure your Fire stick or TV is able to accept apps from unknown sources. This can be found under Settings > Device > Developer Options. Turn on Apps from Unknown Sources.

On your Amazon Firestick/TV – go to Search and type “Downloader” then click on the word to search it.

 

 

Step 2

That should bring up Downloader, which looks like this.

 

 

Download that app to your Firestick and open it up.

Step 3

Type in http://bit.ly/NordVPNAPK into the url text box on the home screen of Downloader. Make you type it exactly like that with capital and lowercase letters as shown, then press Go.

If you don’t trust me, you can also type https://downloads.nordcdn.com/apps/android/generic/nordvpn-sideload/latest/NordVPN.apk but that takes a really long time.

 

 

Your download should begin immediately. The file size at the time of this writing is 26.5MB.

Once that is downloaded, you will be prompted to install it.

Step 4

Click Install at the bottom right of the screen

 

 

Mine says The update requires no new permissions because I already have it installed. Yours will likely have a few things written there, such as Network Access, Launch Automatically, Prevent Sleeping, etc.

No need to open the application yet though. We need to get the mouse working first.

Step 5

Go back to the Home screen and search for another app, just like we did with downloader. Search “Mouse Toggle for Fire TV”. It will likely pop up as a suggestion before you have to type the entire phrase.

 

 

Go ahead and get this downloaded and then open it from the app list Settings > Applications > Managed Installed Applications > Mouse Toggle for Fire TV. You now need to enable the mouse.

 

 

Step 6

After the mouse is enabled, open up the NordVPN app from your applications list Settings > Applications > Managed Installed Applications > NordVPN

To activate the mouse on the screen, you must double tap the play/pause button on your Firestick remote. Sometimes you mouse indicator, which is a small circle, will pop up off the screen so you need to hold up or down to try to get it on the screen. For me, it seems to pop up below the screen usually so I have to hold Up to make the mouse visible.

You can see the small circle in the middle of this next image. That is the mouse.

 

 

Now, you simply need to login to your NordVPN account. If you do not have one, NordVPN is running a special 3-year deal which bring the price down all the way to 2.75/month. It’s the best deal out there right now for the quality of service.

At this point, I would suggest you get on your computer and pick a few favorite servers. You can favorite them with the heart icon. When you open up the NordVPN Firestick app, You can simply click the heart icon at the top right corner and then connect to one of your saved servers. You can’t see  that icon on this image because it is cut off but I promise it is there.

 

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About the Author: Nathan Beers

I am a former professional poker player turned developer. I am currently living in Tampa, FL and I am working as a full-stack web developer. I am fascinated by learning new technologies and love to write about them. I also deeply believe in a decentralized internet with no government involvement and enjoy trading cryptocurrencies. I am currently invested in Bitcoin, Ethereum,Litecoin, NEM, Sia, and Reddcoin