The Ultimate Guide To Using Mac Proxies: Everything You Need To Know
Just the sleek look and feel of Apple’s Mac devices are a testament to how much technology has advanced over the years. With stunning features such as terabytes of storage space and super high definition web cameras, the level of innovation in these devices is awe-inspiring. But, no matter how wonderful a piece of technology is, there is always some way to make it better. Something that can improve its performance and your experience with it. This is where the use of Mac proxies comes in.
A proxy plus a Mac device is a powerful combination that will take you to a whole new level of speed, security, and freedom. Read on or scroll through the table of contents to find out what Mac Proxies are, how you can use them, how to set them up and where to find the best ones.
What Is a Mac Proxy?
Every device that connects to the internet has a unique code associated with it. Through this code, referred to as an IP address, websites can identify a device, pinpoint its general location, and gather information about their visitors. This may seem harmless on the surface. But, IP addresses are used to create certain restrictions and they can even be used to cause harm. So keeping your IP address hidden can prove very useful. Enter the Mac proxy.
Proxies are intermediary IP addresses used to hide the IP addresses of devices. When you use a proxy on a MacBook, for instance, the IP address of your MacBook will be covered by the proxy IP address whenever you connect to websites. Your interactions with websites will no longer be direct. Instead, the proxy IP address will send requests on your behalf. As such, sites cannot tell where you are actually located and track you.
How to Use a Proxy on Mac
The fact that a proxy hides your IP address is the reason for one of its most popular uses – increased privacy. But the use of proxies goes far beyond being able to browse through websites anonymously. Whether you are using a MacBook, an iMac, or a Mac mini, here are a few interesting ways you can use a proxy to get the most out of your Mac device:
1. Get rid of geo-blocks
From movies to games, quite a lot of content on the internet is available only in certain regions of the world. Sometimes, this is because local authorities place bans on certain pieces of content, preventing them from being available in their jurisdiction. In other cases, especially when it comes to games, developers simply do not have the resources to make the content available in a particular area.
The only reason websites are able to tell where a particular device is connecting from is through an IP address. Since proxy IP addresses are tied to specific locations, using one can help you change your location and solve the problem of geo-blocking. This is especially useful if you are constantly on the move. With a Mac proxy, the world of the internet will be fully open to you no matter where you are located.
2. Play games with zero lag
Lag is the enemy of gamers everywhere and proxies are the perfect antidote. As a result of two main features, Mac proxies can help you eliminate lag. Firstly, some proxy providers ensure that their proxies run at extremely fast speeds which contributes to a smoother experience. Secondly, you can choose the location of your proxy IP address and when you pick mac proxies closer to the server of the game you want to play, requests have shorter distances to travel. As such, they can be carried out faster.
3. Stay safe from hackers
While Apple devices are generally considered to be superior in terms of security, there is still a slim chance of your Mac book being hacked or getting infected by malware. One common way bad actors are able to compromise the security of devices is through IP address hacking. Having a middle man in the form of a proxy IP address provides an extra layer of protection, keeping you safe as you go about your business online.
4. Scrape valuable data for your business
Mac book proxies can make the process of web scraping more secure and efficient. Web scraping refers to the automatic collection of relevant data from web pages. This is usually carried out by a bot. While these bots are not essentially doing anything wrong, they make requests lightning-fast and with patterns different from a human user. As such, to most websites, they look suspicious. These websites see them as malware and tend to ban them. By providing alternative IP addresses the bots can access websites through, proxies solve this problem allowing the web scraping process to continue.
From competitor research to SEO strategy building, the uses of web scraping for business are immense. And, as we just mentioned, the process of web scraping will be close to nothing without proxies. Learn more about ways you can harness the power of proxies for your business in this post.
Choosing the Right Types of Mac Proxies
Before you can start reaping the benefits of proxies, you must decide what type of proxy you would like to use. While they all offer the general benefits of proxies, each has unique pros and cons. Here are a few types you should be aware of:
1. Dedicated, semi-dedicated, and rotating Mac proxies
Depending on the terms and conditions of purchase, a proxy can either be dedicated, semi-dedicated or rotating:
A dedicated proxy is one that only a single user has access to. When you buy a dedicated proxy, the company gives you full control over it for the duration that you purchase it. Because of this monopoly you have over it, you don’t have to share important resources like bandwidth. So you can enjoy relatively faster network speeds and, since no one else is using the address, you can be sure of its security. What’s more, you don’t need to worry about someone getting it banned from a website you would like to access. The major drawback of using a dedicated proxy is the fact that it is relatively expensive.
A semi-dedicated proxy is shared by a few users at the same time. Since many people simultaneously use the IP address with you, you might experience slower network speeds. You will also need to be more conscious of security. And you might discover that the IP address is banned from a website you were hoping to access. Despite the drawbacks, semi-dedicated proxies are a great and affordable option especially if you get them from reputable providers. Such providers will work to minimize the drawbacks and make semi-dedicated proxies enjoyable and safe for every user.
While you get access to only one IP address with dedicated and semi-dedicated proxies, with a rotating proxy, you get access to several IPs that are changed at regular intervals. Your identification tag and location are constantly changing. As such, rotating Mac proxies grant you the highest level of anonymity. It gets better. Rotating proxies are the best for web scraping projects because they allow the automatic switching of IP addresses whenever one gets banned.
2. Residential vs datacenter Mac proxies
Based on the place of origin, proxies can be classified as datacenter or residential. Residential proxies are those that come from Internet Service Providers (ISPs). These providers give out these IP addresses to homeowners. As such, they are linked to actual physical residences. Because of this, residential proxies are seen as more legitimate. When you connect to a website via such an IP address, you resemble a normal everyday user. However, because they must be obtained from real users, residential proxies are relatively expensive and not readily available.
Datacenter proxies, on the other hand, come from servers in data centers. They are cheaper and more readily available. They are not associated with physical addresses or ISPs. Because of these features, websites associate them with bot-like behavior and are quick to detect and ban them. In fact, some websites do not allow you to connect to them via data center proxies at all. Notable examples are Twitter and Instagram. Learn more here.
The bottom line is this:
If your use case is something simple like gaming or unlocking restricted content, data center proxies might be best for you. But if you are looking to scrape data, a residential proxy is best. Because it mimics human behavior and is so difficult to detect, it allows the web scraping process to be carried out faster and with fewer bans.
These two classifications of proxies mentioned above are not mutually exclusive. A proxy can be rotating and residential. In fact, such a proxy is the absolute best kind for web scraping. Find out more about that in this post.
How to Setup a Proxy on Mac
The process might vary with different service providers. But, in general, here are the steps you need to take to start sending requests via a proxy on any Mac device:
- Find and click on the Apple symbol. It is usually at the top left corner of your screen.
- Navigate to System Preferences > Network > WiFi > Advanced
- Click on the “Proxies” tab and fill in the details provided to you by your proxy provider.
Note that the setup outlined above will allow the proxy to work on applications that are responsive to your system’s proxy settings. But, some applications like Microsoft Firefox may require you to perform an independent setup for them.
How to Get a Good Proxy IP Address for Your Mac Device
The quality of a proxy IP address highly depends on the provider that you get it from. There are lots of free proxy providers out there but, for several reasons, it is best to avoid them. Using their services might expose your Mac device to the security threats and slow network speeds you were trying to avoid in the first place.
Paid providers have a vested interest in giving you the best service possible and that is why they can assure you of the benefits of using a proxy. Make sure you go for providers with a team that is available to answer any questions you might have 24/7, multiple IP locations to choose from, and the offer of a free trial so that you can test out their service.
Blazing SEO has all this and so much more. Our proxies operate a speed of 1GBS paired with unlimited bandwidth to give you the fastest proxies possible. Your privacy is as important to us as it is to you, and with end-to-end control of our hardware, we work hard to maintain it. If you have any questions about our services, do not hesitate to get in touch with us.
Apple’s Mac devices are leading in innovation and design but, with Mac proxies, you can take things several steps further. You can break geographical barriers and enjoy unmatched freedom, enjoy increased privacy, give yourself an extra layer of protection against hackers, enjoy the joys of gaming without the frustration of lag, and so much more.
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