Shadowsocks with the Mullvad CLI


Last updated: 3 November 2020

Unable to surf the entire web because you're stuck behind a restrictive firewall? Then Shadowsocks might be your answer. In this guide, we'll walk you through the steps to use this proxy to connect to our servers using the Mullvad command line interface (CLI) in your operating system's terminal.

What is Shadowsocks?

Please see our Intro to Shadowsocks guide.

Installation requirements

To use this guide, you need

  • Windows, macOS, or Linux
  • version 2019.6 or newer of the Mullvad VPN app – download it here
  • to use the terminal/command prompt.

Set-up instructions

1. Open the terminal

Linux and macOS

Open the terminal.


Open the command prompt and navigate to C:\Program Files\Mullvad VPN\resources\

2. Set up Shadowsocks

This command will configure Mullvad to use Shadowsocks.

mullvad bridge set location any

You can specify the location of the Shadowsocks bridge server by replacing any with a specific country or city. For example, mullvad bridge set location us chi will connect you to Chicago in the U.S.

To get a list of all location options and their abbreviations, run the following command.

mullvad bridge list

To specify a specific bridge server, run mullvad bridge set location us chi us-chi-br-001, in which you specify country, city, and that location's server name which you can find in our list of bridge servers.

3. Connect

Run the following command to connect to our VPN servers using Shadowsocks.

mullvad bridge set state on

4. Disconnect

mullvad bridge set state off

5. Is Shadowsocks on or off?

Run the following command and you will either see "on" or "off".

mullvad bridge get

If you check your status with our Connection check while connected, nothing about Shadowsocks or a bridge connection will be mentioned. Only your exit location/server will display.

Advanced configurations

You can also configure a variety of advanced options, including proxy, IP, and cipher. Run the following command but replace with the IP address of the Mullvad bridge server you want to use as your entry location.

mullvad bridge set custom shadowsocks