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What Is SOCKS5 and How Does It Work?


While going through your proxy settings on different apps and browsers, SOCKS5 is likely enabled by default. SOCKS5 may not be the best option, but there are a couple of reasons why SOCKS5 comes highly recommended. To learn everything there is to know about SOCKS5 and how it works, read on.

Quick Overview

SOCKS5 proxies are generally used for streaming websites or live calls. These sites tend to utilize UDP (User Datagram Protocol) to transmit data, which is only possible via SOCKS5 proxies, at least for now.

Simply put, if you think you think HTTP or HTTPS traffic will not cut it for you, and you need a proxy with non-TCP protocols, then SOCKS5 proxies are your best bet. In most cases, HTTP or HTTPS traffic will not be blocked by a firewall, meaning you may not need SOCKS5 proxies in the first place.

This is the short version of SOCKS5 and how it works, but this blog will give you in-depth detail regarding SOCKS5 proxies and how it can be used for optimum results.

Understanding Internet Protocols

Let’s start at the very top. The internet sits on the foundation of three internet protocols, which are:

  1. ICMP (Internet Control Messaging Protocol)
  2. TCP (Transmission Control Protocol)
  3. UDP (User Datagram Protocol)

ICMP is not meant to transmit application data; it instead transmits data bout the network itself. In practice, ICMP is best used as a ping utility. This control protocol is not meant for web scraping, which is why it will not be discussed any further in this blog.

The most essential protocols worth discussing are UDP and TCP. These protocols are transport protocols that transmit data. The primary difference between the two protocols is that TCP guarantees data transmission to its destination in the correct order, including error-checks and optimizations.

As for UDP, the data transmitted could reach its destination, or not, perhaps even without any order. This connection type is used for real-time communication, specifically, where data speed is a priority over correct data delivery.

What is SOCKS?

SOCKS is a proxy server that creates connections with servers behind firewalls, exchanging network packets between the server and the client.

About SOCKS5 and its Utilization

SOCKS5 is the latest iteration of the SOCKS protocol. SOCKS5 comes with improved security, unlike the vanilla SOCKS protocol.

SOCKS5 proxies are necessary when TCP connections are blocked, where UDP connections are the only option. Unfortunately, such a connection is relied upon for illegal reasons, like torrenting copyrighted content. But the good news is SOCKS5 is not unlawful since it is just a tool that allows for a specific type of connection to the internet.

Businesses and individuals who cannot make do with HTTP or HTTPS will find SOCKS5 perfect for their needs and requirements. Simply put, it depends on the kind of data you want to scrape. Apart from this, SOCKS5 is ideal for file-sharing, chat, and voice-over IP applications. SOCKS5 is also perfectly suited for Bitcoin wallets and even Tor, for that matter.

Ivacy VPN does not offer SOCKS5 on its applications and or servers, but there is a good reason for it. SOCKS5 may give you a different IP address to hide your location, but it lacks a ton of features that you would typically find with Ivacy VPN. Apart from securing your online presence, Ivacy VPN offers countless other use cases, such as:

  • Content unblocking
  • Secure torrenting
  • Defeating ISP throttling
  • Regional online shopping, and much more!
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