Rayner Software produces Mac and iPhone consumer applications
NetShade is a Proxy and VPN service for the Mac and iOS.
If you have some experience with the proxy and VPN services out there, you probably know that it’s a pretty mixed field. Many of them have overloaded servers, foist advertising and redirects on their users, use bait & switch pricing tactics, and impose restrictive bandwidth caps. If you’ve been there, you're not alone. And since you're now here, you’ve found the alternative. Welcome home. We’ve built our customer base through old-fashioned, fair and transparent business practices including a 30 day refund policy, a 10 day unlimited trial period, and a focus on consistent improvement of our product.
We focus exclusively on the Mac and iOS platforms to deliver the best user experience.
NetShade is cleanly coded and lightweight.
Servers in 7 countries and counting.
Use VPN when you need encryption, and the faster Proxy service when you don't.
Bandwidth caps are frustrating. We don't have them.
We've been running proxy servers for 10 years.
What is the difference between Proxy and VPN?
• VPNs encrypt, proxies do not.
• VPNs and proxies both route your Internet connection through a different server.
• VPNs handle all internet traffic, proxies handle only web traffic.
• VPNs are more secure, but also more costly with more overhead. They are useful when security is essential, but not always necessary.
|NetShade VPN||NetShade proxies||Public proxies|
|Allows access to content hosted abroad|
|Works in web browsers|
|Hosted by a trusted commercial provider|
|Anonymizes traffic to destination sites||1|
|Anonymizes traffic through your ISP||2||1, 2|
|Works in all Internet apps|
1: The public proxies provide varying levels of anonymity, and may or may not be run by a trustworthy operator.
2: Although it is possible for your ISP to determine which URLs you access via a proxy server, this would require decoding of the HTTP request headers by the ISP. In practice, this level of logging is not common.
More detailed information is available in Technical Info.
When should I use VPN, and when should I use proxy?
Use VPN when security is a primary concern, i.e. if you are on a
public Wi-Fi hotspot, or accessing sensitive information. VPN is a fully
encrypted protocol which handles traffic on all ports, and as such it is slower
Use Proxy when encryption is not important, but you need to access web content anonymously. Proxies are also useful for accessing content available only in other regions of the world.
What protocols does NetShade support?
The NetShade VPN servers work over all TCP ports and protocols. Public proxy servers support HTTP. The NetShade Proxy servers support HTTP and HTTPS.
What is the return policy?
Any purchase made through our website may be returned within 30 days for a full refund. Please contact us via the support form to request a refund. Purchases made through Apple's App Store must be refunded through Apple.
What is the difference between Public Proxy and NetShade Proxy?
The Public Proxy option will select a public HTTP proxy server from NetShade's list. These servers are freely available for everyone's use, and they can become heavily accessed. For this reason, their reliability cannot be assured.
The NetShade Proxy option connects you through one of NetShade's own anonymous proxy servers. These servers are fully anonymous, and because they are private and accessible only to NetShade users they receive much less traffic than public proxy servers generally do. The NetShade proxy is available only to registered users of the program with an active subscription to the NetShade Proxy service (the first year is included with an initial purchase of NetShade.)
Why do some of the public proxies not work?
NetShade makes every effort to provide a reliable list of public proxy servers, but these servers become so heavily accessed that they frequently go down or become unusably slow throughout the day. NetShade's server contacts all the proxies in its list every night, and measures their response time. This data is sent to the NetShade client program so that your list is always current. Unfortunately reliable public proxies are becoming increasingly rare. The NetShade proxies are generally your best option, as they are dedicated Mac-only proxy servers which handle comparatively small amounts of traffic.
Subscription & Registration
What does NetShade cost?
A NetShade license with one year of proxy access costs $29. A NetShade
license with one year of Proxy+VPN access costs $59. Subscriptions to either service
can be renewed for $19/year and $49/year, respectively. Usage is always
unlimited, within the limits of normal individual use.
Subscriptions of less than one year are available as well, for an increased daily rate.
How can I enter a different registration code?
NetShade will not accept my registration code.
Make sure your code is for the version of NetShade you’re trying to run. Codes beginning with NS4 are for NetShade 4.x for Mac or NetShade 1.x for iOS. Codes beginning with NS5 are for NetShade 5.x for Mac or NetShade 2.x for iOS. NetShade 4 codes can be upgraded at the Account Info page.
Can I use the same registration code on multiple systems?
Yes, one code is good for Macs within the same household, up to 5 systems. An iOS enabled code may also be used on up to five iOS devices, provided the devices have the same owner.
Does the purchase of NetShade include a subscription to the NetShade Proxy servers?
The purchase of NetShade includes a one year subscription to the NetShade Proxy servers. The NetShade application will continue to function without a proxy subscription, and can be used to access the public proxies and user proxies. This subscription can be renewed at $19 for each additional year.
How do I get NetShade to work with Little Snitch?
Please see our page about NetShade and Little Snitch
Which browsers work with NetShade?
Safari, Firefox (see item below,) Camino, OmniWeb, and Chrome.
How can I get NetShade to work with Firefox?
Alert: It appears that newer versions of Firefox (13 and higher) have a bug which causes the browser to ignore proxy settings. It happens on some systems and not on others.
Unless you have a specific reason for using Firefox, a different browser (Safari or Chrome) is generally preferable on a Mac.
Will NetShade work everywhere?
NetShade's servers can be blocked just like any other servers. Therefore, certain countries with filtered Internet block NetShade's services. Presently we're aware of blocking in parts of China, Iran, Bahrain, the UAE, Pakistan, Oman and other countries. The best choice is to download the free trial and see if the app will work in your location.
Why is my code for NetShade not working?
I've upgraded to iOS 6, and now NetShade isn't working.
If you were running iOS 5 with NetShade and you've done the upgrade to iOS 6, it may have broken your PAC file configuration. There seems to be a bug in the iOS update process which renders PAC files impossible to activate within a Wi-Fi config.
Fortunately, there is an easy workaround.
1. Go to Settings -> Wi-Fi
2. Touch the blue arrow next to your Wi-Fi network
3. Touch "Forget this Network"
4. Re-join the network
5. Re-enter your Wi-Fi password if asked, then set up the PAC file setting again.
How does NetShade work?
NetShade routes your web connection through a web proxy server. It achieves this by altering your system's network settings. Browsers which adhere to Apple's system configuration protocol will pick up on these changes, and automatically send your connection through a proxy as opposed to connecting to the target site directly.
A. Your computer’s web connections are managed by the NetShade application.
B. Every time you launch NetShade, it connects to the NetShade server to obtain an up-to-date list of public proxy servers. The proxies on this list are then tested by your computer to ensure connectivity.
C. Direct: By clicking the “Direct” button in NetShade, your web connections are routed directly to the Internet with no proxy protection.
D. Public Proxy: By clicking the “Public Proxy” button in NetShade, your connections are routed through one of the public proxy servers in NetShade’s list. These proxies are not run by NetShade, and their reliability cannot be guaranteed. They do, however, do a good job of performing NetShade's primary function, which is to hide your IP address from the sites you visit.
E. NetShade Proxy: By clicking the “NetShade Proxy” button (available only to registered users,) your connections are routed through one of NetShade’s private proxy servers. At present, you can switch between a US-based proxy and one located in the UK. These are high-bandwidth fully anonymous proxy servers, maintained by NetShade. They support HTTP and HTTPS. Public proxies on the other hand are HTTP only. HTTPS through a public proxy would be generally inadvisable anyway, as the admins of these servers may have varying practices as to the use of their logs and the security of their systems.
What do the anonymity ratings mean?
The Public Proxies in NetShade's list are categorized with one, two, or three bars to
represent good, better, or best anonymity.
One bar: The proxy server sends your computer's IP address to the target host in a special HTTP variable. This means that the host is able to find out your IP address, but will have to take special measures to do so. The host will need to know what field to look at for your IP address, and specially log it. Most hosts do not go to this trouble.
Two bars: The proxy server does not send your IP address to the target host. It does identify itself as a proxy server. Although the target host cannot determine your IP address, it can tell that you are using a proxy server.
Three bars: The proxy server does not send your IP address to the target host, nor does it identify itself as a proxy. The target host is unable to determine your IP address. It is also unable to determine that you are using a proxy. All the NetShade proxy servers are this type.
Can NetShade make my connection anonymous for mail, Acquisition, Limewire, etc?
Yes, when using VPN servers all traffic is routed through NetShade. When using proxy servers however, only web protocols (HTTP and HTTPS) are proxied.
How can I turn off NetShade completely?
Every time you quit NetShade it sets your system back to a direct, un-proxied Internet connection. However, if NetShade crashes, is force-quit, or if your computer loses power while NetShade is running, it can leave your system behind a proxy server. To correct this, simply launch NetShade, select either a Public Proxy or NetShade Proxy, and then click Direct Connection. Your connection should now be un-proxied.
What platforms are supported?
MacOS X and iOS.
Who runs NetShade?
NetShade is run by Rayner Software, LLC incorporated in California, USA.
Rayner Software is a completely independent and unaffiliated company, started and developed without any outside investment. The company was founded in 2002 by Ty Rayner, and is devoted to the principles of privacy protection and of long-term reputability above short-term profits. We will never attempt to monetize user information nor data-mine it for any marketing-driven end.
What information does NetShade record about me?
NetShade retains activity logs for a limited amount of time. This is never more than 30 days, and usually less than 10 days. The duration is limited by a file size boundary, so the faster the logs fill up the sooner they are purged from the server's hard drive.
Under no circumstances will NetShade sell or trade user activity information with any third party. NetShade will not use users' proxy acitivities for any form of marketing via e-mail or otherwise. NetShade will only use the information recorded in activity logs for compliance with investigations pertaining to credible reports of illegal activity being conducted via NetShade's proxy service.
NetShade isn't in the business of data-mining, and frankly we find the whole practice of snooping to be distasteful. Other proxy servers tend to be far less clear about how they track and log your activities. With NetShade, we leave no question about it. The NetShade proxy servers are fast, almost always online, and completely anonymous.
For more details, please see our Policies.
Will NetShade turn my information over to law enforcement?
We believe strongly in protecting the privacy of our users. We also comply with the law, and will comply with a genuine, signed subpoena from a court if we receive one.
In summary, we absolutely seek to protect the privacy of our users. However we also have no intention of facilitating or concealing any criminal activity. We believe in the law, and we believe in adhererence to the process of law by all, including law enforcement.
For more details, please see our Policies.
Please enter one of the following:
Is NetShade not accepting your registration code?
Make sure your code is for the version of NetShade you’re trying to run. Codes beginning with NS4 are for NetShade 4.x for Mac or NetShade 1.x for iOS. Codes beginning with NS5 are for NetShade 5.x for Mac or NetShade 2.x for iOS. NetShade 4 codes can be upgraded at Account Info.
A different issue?
It may be covered in the FAQ.
The NetShade VPN service is available for both Mac and iOS. The iOS version uses an IPsec-based VPN, and the Mac version uses an OpenVPN-based VPN. Both of these VPN technologies are considered secure, and are widely deployed by large corporations and government for secure communications.
The NetShade Proxy Service
Our NetShade proxy servers are all dedicated servers. They sit inside datacenters on high-capacity Internet connections. We run a combination of custom and open source software to run our proxy service. The proxy software itself is Apache Traffic Server, but we've heavily extended it by adding our own plugins and add-ons to make the user's experience as seamless as possible.
The NetShade VPN Service
An optional upgrade from HTTP/HTTPS Proxy service, the NetShade VPN service provides extra security by encrypting your Internet communications. Unlike a proxy, the VPN operates at the network transport level. This ensures that all communication between you and the VPN server is encrypted, over any port and from any app.
Proxy: HTTP Proxy Server. A proxy server acts as a relay for your web connections. Proxy servers have no effect on encryption and they only deal with web traffic. As with a regular web connection, data is only encrypted if it goes over HTTPS.
VPN: Virtual Private Network. A secure encrypted tunnel between you and a remote computer or network. In the case of NetShade, the tunnel goes between you and one of our servers. Our server then provides you with a securely encrypted link to the Internet.
Proxy+VPN: A dual-mode setup enables additional anonymity by adding an HTTP proxy to the VPN tunnel. The VPN layer is closer to your computer, where the proxy layer sits between the VPN servers and the Internet. This connection mode can be thought of as a “bounce” from VPN to Proxy to host.
Proxy + VPN
Mac: The NetShade app is first and foremost a configuration engine. It does not get its hands into the network plumbing of your computer. It is just configuring your system to use certain settings, and the Mac software does the hard work. Additionally, NetShade talks with our servers to coordinate access between your network and our servers. The app is what enables us to run a secure system without asking for a login and password.
iOS: As with the Mac version, the NetShade app talks to our servers to grant users access. But it does not make any configuration changes to your system, because these types of actions aren't permitted by the iOS APIs. For this reason, the iOS version requires an additional PAC file configuration step, outlined in the app.