How to Set up a Proxy Server on iPhone or iPad

Setting a proxy server on your iOS device may be required to access the Internet at school or to access the business network. Additionally, using a proxy server may have important benefits, like improved privacy, access to restricted websites, better download speed.

It is important to understand that when you set up a proxy all your Internet traffic will pass through the proxy and it may involve security risks.

Before you start with the setup, you need access to the proxy authentication credentials (a PAC file URL, or IP address, port, username, password). You obtain them from the network administrator (at school or work), or you may get access to one or more proxies by subscribing to a proxy service. Of course, you may use free, open proxies, but I do not recommend them for security reasons.

What You’ll Learn

How to configure the iOS proxy settings

Configuring the proxy settings on an iPhone or iPad is straightforward and does not require advanced technical knowledge.

Step 1. Open the ‘Settings’ app from your iPhone or iPad

The Settings app contains all the necessary options for configuring a proxy on your iOS device.

Step 2. Tap on the ‘Wi-Fi’ settings category.

How to configure the iOS proxy settings - Open Settings

Step 3. Select the desired Wi-Fi network (the one you need to use with the proxy).

The proxy settings are unique for each Wi-Fi network. Thus, if you want to use the same proxy on two or more different networks, you need to repeat the steps 3 to 8 for each Wi-Fi network.

How to configure the iOS proxy settings - Select Wi-Fi network

Step 4. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and look for the ‘HTTP Proxy’ section.

How to configure the iOS proxy settings - Configure Proxy

Step 5. Tap ‘Configure Proxy’.

Step 6. On the ‘Configure Proxy’ screen, tap ‘Manual’.

The HTTP proxy option is Off by default. It means that your iPhone or iPad does not use a proxy to connect to the Internet.

If you have access to a proxy server information (server address or IP address, port, username, password) select Manual.

The Automatic option can be used if you have access to a PAC file (proxy autoconfiguration script) provided by your network administrator or proxy service provider.

How to configure the iOS proxy settings - Manual Setup

Step 7. Enter the proxy server IP or name and the proxy port.

Enter the address or the IP address of the proxy server in the Server text box and the port in the Port box. If the proxy requires basic HTTP authentication don’t forget to check Authentication and enter the Username and Password.

Step 8. Tap ‘Save’ from the right-top corner.

Step 9. Open a browser and load an IP checker site in order to verify the proxy connection.

Every time you set up a proxy on your iPhone or iPad, you need to check whether the setup is correct and the proxy connection could be established.

Open a web browser (Safari, Chrome, Firefox) and load an IP checker website, like xmyip.com. If the web page loads and it shows the proxy IP address then you are done: you have successfully finished the proxy configuration on your iOS device.

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How to disable proxy settings on iPhone and iPad

Removing the manual proxy settings involves the same steps, except for selecting the Off option for the proxy configuration.

Step 1. Open the ‘Settings’ app from your iPhone or iPad.

Step 2. Tap on the ‘Wi-Fi’ settings category.

Step 3. Select the active WiFi network that uses a proxy.

Step 4. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and look for ‘HTTP Proxy’ section.

Step 5. Tap ‘Configure Proxy’.

Step 6. On the ‘Configure Proxy’ screen select ‘Off’.

Step 7. Tap ‘Save’ from the right-top corner.

Step 8. Check your Internet connection by loading any website in your web browser.

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What does it happen if the proxy server does not work?

If your iPhone or iPad cannot connect to the proxy server (the proxy credentials are not correct, the proxy goes offline, your subscription to the proxy service expired), you will not be able to access the Internet or other network addresses.

By opening a web browser you will get an error message similar to the one from the image below.

To fix the problem, you may either disable the proxy (as explained above) or solve the issues with the proxy connection (check proxy credentials, check proxy subscription, change the proxy).

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How do I find the name of my proxy server on my iPhone

Don’t you know the name or the IP address of the proxy you are using? Go to the Configure Proxy screen (Settings > Wifi > Wi-Fi network > Configure Proxy) and read the name or the IP address in the Server field.

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Types of proxies that you can use on your iPhone or iPad

iOS is able to communicate with HTTP proxy servers. There is no use to enter the IP address of a SOCKS proxy in the Server field (Manual setup), as it would not work.

However, as explained in this article, you may use a SOCKS proxy by setting up a PAC file.

I often read questions on how to set up a web proxy on an iPhone. To be clear: there is nothing to set when using web proxies. A web proxy is similar to a web site that can be loaded on your browser. Check my proxy tools list for recommended web proxies.

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