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This tutorial will teach you how to set up the ExpressVPN app on Asus routers.

IMPORTANT: The steps below only work for the Asus RT-AC68U, RT-AC87U, RT-AC56R, RT-AC56S, and RT-AC56U. Make sure you are using the correct firmware for each model or the setup process will not work. For other router models, see the manual router setup instructions here.

Jump to…

Download the ExpressVPN firmware
Set up your Asus router
TECHNICAL: Flashing your router
Connect your devices
Connect to a different server location
Manage devices connected to the router
Finding your passwords
Need help with MediaStreamer?
I’ve set up my router but cannot connect to the internet


Download the ExpressVPN firmware

Sign in to your ExpressVPN account using your email and password.

sign in to your expressvpn account

You will be taken to your account dashboard. Keep this page open. You will need to return here and retrieve your account activation code later.

Select Set Up on More Devices. (On mobile, select Set Up ExpressVPN.)

Click on "Set up ExpressVPN."

Select Router, then from the Select your router dropdown menu, choose your Asus router model. Make sure you select the actual model name for your router.

Hit Download Firmware to start downloading the ExpressVPN firmware.

download expressvpn asus firmware

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Set up your Asus router

Important: If your network is currently using a different router, ExpressVPN recommends that you simply add the Asus router as a secondary router on your existing network. If you wish to replace your existing, primary router with the ExpressVPN router, we recommend that you first set up the Asus router as a secondary router and then remove your primary router.

To set up your Asus router:

Setup for routers without internet access

Make sure your router is powered on, with any required antennas attached. Connect your computer to the router by:

  1. cable, or
  2. the secure wireless network name found on the bottom of the router.

Access the Asus router dashboard. If you need help finding your router’s gateway, follow the instructions here.

If you are logging in for the first time, enter ‘admin’ and a temporary password. Click Next.

enter temporary password

Select a password for the router’s SSIDs. Input the password and then click on Apply and then Complete.

ssid password

You will now arrive at the router admin dashboard. Proceed to the steps below.

Need help? For any issues, please contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

Setup for routers with internet access

You should be connected to the internet and able to browse sites on the internet.

Open a browser and access the Asus router dashboard. If you cannot access the dashboard via http://router.asus.com/, try to find your router’s gateway (e.g., 192.168.1.1). You can follow the instructions here.

You will be prompted to log in. Enter your existing router username and password.

You will now arrive at the router admin dashboard. Proceed to the steps below.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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TECHNICAL: Flashing your router

Important: Flashing the firmware will erase any current settings, such as your Wi-Fi SSID and password, on your router. Although you can revert to the default firmware, users are not recommended to attempt the below without prior technical know-how.

On the left side of your dashboard, click on Administration.
click administrationFor instructions on how to upload the ExpressVPN firmware, click on the link appropriate to your Asus firmware version number.

For Asus Firmware 3.0.0.4.384.20648 and after

Select Firmware Upgrade. Click on Upload and select the firmware you downloaded previously.

Note: if you see a message saying firmware file is invalid, please check you have the correct firmware. The firmware file name should also match your router model name.asus rt-ac86u upload firmware

For Asus Firmware before 3.0.0.4.384.20648

Select Firmware Upgrade. Click on Choose file and select the firmware you downloaded previously.

Note: if you see a message saying firmware file is invalid, please check you have the correct firmware. The firmware file name should also match your router model name.

upload firmware

Click Upload.

When you see the message Router update is completed, you may need to reconnect your Ethernet cable to the router’s Wi-Fi. The Wi-Fi name is ASUS_(modelname)_(revision) or (for some hardware: Broadcom_Northstar) and the password is the PIN number printed on the sticker on the back or bottom of the router.

You will be taken to the ExpressVPN router dashboard. Click Get Started.

Click on "Get Started."

If you know your ISP username and password, enter it and click Connect. If not, click My ISP Has No Login.

Enter your ISP credentials.

Paste the account activation code you found before and click Sign In.

Enter your ExpressVPN activation code.

You can share crash reports and other anonymous analytics to improve ExpressVPN. Click OK if you agree to share reports.

Share analytics for ExpressVPN.

You will now configure the details for your Wi-Fi network. Enter the Wi-Fi name and Wi-Fi password you want to use and click Continue.

Set the Wi-Fi username and password.

Next, set the router admin password. This is the password you will use to access the ExpressVPN router dashboard.

Set the new dashboard password.

Click Done to confirm your router administration settings. You may need to reconnect to your router’s Wi-Fi.

You’re advised to keep a record of your router usernames and passwords.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Connect your devices

By default, the ExpressVPN router app will connect you to the best possible VPN location, called Smart Location. This is determined using anonymous metrics such as download speed, latency, and distance.

Any device connected to the internet via your ExpressVPN router (either through cable or Wi-Fi) will have its traffic sent through a secure VPN.

The ExpressVPN router app is connected.

To connect any device to the VPN, plug its network cable into the ExpressVPN router or connect the device to the ExpressVPN router’s Wi-Fi. The network name and password are given as the last two items at the bottom of your router.

You can also change the VPN server location you are connected to or disconnect a device connected to the router by logging in to www.expressvpnrouter.com.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Connect to a different server location

To connect to a different server location, click on the location picker.

Click on the location picker.

Browse through the available locations, then click on a location to connect to it.

Browser server locations in the ExpressVPN router app.

You can also use the search bar to search for a location to connect to. Click on a location to connect to it.

Search for locations in the ExpressVPN router app.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Manage devices connected to the router

By default, the ExpressVPN app routes all traffic through the VPN. However, you may configure the app so that only certain connected devices use the VPN.

On the router dashboard, go to the Devices tab.

If Each device uses is set to Router VPN, all connected devices will use the VPN.

Configure all connected devices to use the VPN.

If Each device uses is set to Per device, you can select which devices are protected by the VPN.

Configure selected devices to use the VPN.

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Finding your passwords

All the passwords you need are written on the bottom of your router. For joining the router Wi-Fi:

  • SSID/Wi-Fi name: Asus-RT-<model number>
  • SSID/Wi-Fi password: <labeled as “PIN Code” on the sticker on the back of your router>

For logging into www.expressvpnrouter.com

  • Router admin password: <the password you previously set>

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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Need help with MediaStreamer?

If you are looking to use the MediaStreamer DNS servers, read this article: How to set up DNS on your Asus router.

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I’ve set up my router but cannot connect to the internet

If you have set up your Asus router according to the instructions above but cannot connect to the internet, please:

  1. Check that your internet cable is plugged into the blue “Internet” port at the back of the router
  2. Check that your Asus router is connected to your modem (if the Asus router is your primary router) or existing router (if you’re using the Asus router as a “secondary” router)
  3. Reboot your router and try connecting to the internet again

Need help? Contact the ExpressVPN Support Team for immediate assistance.

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