Shared proxies, as its name implies, are proxies that are shared between multiple users. They act the same as any other type of proxy server, but you’re sharing your IP address with two or more people. In this article, we’ll explain all about shared proxies, their advantages and disadvantages, and when to use them.
Shared proxies act as regular proxies where they would operate as an intermediary between your device and the internet. Any website you visit will only be able to see the IP address of the proxy server. You’ll be sharing this IP address with multiple other internet users that are using the same proxy provider as you. Shared proxies are usually datacenter IP addresses, but residential and mobile proxies can also be shared.
There are two different types of proxies that can be shared: Shared Proxy List and Shared Rotating Proxies. A shared proxy list is simply a list of IP addresses that are given to you, and you can use it as you like. Shared proxy lists are static IPs where there’s no proxy rotation, and you have to manually switch between IP addresses.
Shared rotating proxies, on the other hand, give you a back connect server which gives you access to a proxy pool with a big number of IP addresses. It would automatically assign you an IP address, and you can choose what time interval you want the IP addresses to rotate.
Shared Proxies Advantages
There are many advantages when using shared proxies, many of which are:
Low Price. As you’re sharing an IP address with multiple other users, the payment will also be split with those other users. This makes shared proxies one of the cheapest types of proxies in the market. There are free proxies but it isn’t recommended to use them.
High Anonymity. A shared proxy server will still give you the same anonymity and privacy protection that a dedicated proxy or private proxy can. Your IP address and location will be hidden, and your proxy server’s IP address can be continuously rotated.
Shared Proxies Disadvantages
Shared proxies have their share of disadvantages too. Some of which are:
Slower Speed. You’re sharing your bandwidth with a number of users, so expect that your internet connection will be slower as a result. Although shared datacenter proxies can still be faster than residential proxies.
Bad Neighbors. Other users may not be as careful as you are and abuse a certain IP address on a website. This means that the IP address will be banned from those websites, and it would be particularly annoying if one of those websites is a website that you’re planning to target.
When To Use Shared Proxies
The best tasks for utilizing shared proxies are websites that aren’t protected or popular, and you don’t mind a slower internet connection. It’s particularly great for obtaining all the basic benefits a proxy server would give you. For example, shared proxies are good for simply hiding your IP address or gaining access to geo-restricted content.
You can also do web scraping with shared proxies, but only if the website you’re targeting isn’t that well protected and you’re not planning to extract that much data. Social media websites, sneaker footsites, and popular search engines like Google would be too much to handle for shared proxies. You’ll have an extremely low success rate and will experience a lot of CAPTCHAS.
Sharing proxies with other users will have its advantages and disadvantages. It might be cheaper but you’ll be getting slower speeds and the shared IP addresses you’re using might even get banned because of other users. There’s a limited amount of use cases for shared proxies, but it still can be an excellent choice depending on what you need it for and your budget.