Relakks encrypts all traffic from your computer to the Internet by using a VPN connection which means that your real IP is not revealed on the Internet at all. The service had serious troubles in the beginning; users were unable to connect to Relakks at all, had slow connections and email support was terrible. Well, they apparently are making a comeback by emailing past users inviting them to freely test Relakks once again for seven days without charges.
I decided to try it out once again and was able to sign up on their website without issues this time. You have to configure a new VPN connection in your operating system which is explained in the faq section of their website.
Details are provided for Microsoft Windows XP, Vista and Mac OS X. Even beginners should be able to create a VPN connection this way. You can now choose to automatically use Relakks whenever you connect to the Internet or manually activate the service, I decided to use it manually but it does not make a difference as long as the service is running.
I suggest to check your IP if you are really connected through the VPN before you do any other activity on the Internet. Let us talk about speed and performance for a moment. Web surfing does not seem to be limited at all by Relakks, everything works fine and fast as usual. I was able to retrieve emails using Thunderbird as well, Winamp streams are working and streaming video on sites like YouTube looks usual.
I decided that it was now time to stress test the connection and see how fast I could go with it. What can I say: Speeds vary a lot. I was not able to maximize my 16 Mbit connection which is no problem usually, the most I got from Relakks was 11 Mbit which is fine but not great. I was able to connect to Giganews and Bittorrent without problems.
It remains to be seen if the service will continue to function this way or if the servers will again go down if to many users sign up for the service. I will keep an eye on it for the next seven days and let you know if I was able to see any changes.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.