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Netnut Proxies Review
Top rated product
8.6

NetNut Review

NetNut’s static residential proxies are fast and perform well. But they work best for experienced users or those who want proxies at scale. 

Recommended for: Data scraping, market research, social media automation

Introduction

NetNut is a relatively new proxy provider, established in 2018 in Israel. It offers exclusively residential IPs for companies that want to protect their brands, conduct business intelligence, or do some plain-ole web scraping.

We could wrap up the introduction here and move on with the review, if not for one interesting fact: All of NetNut’s residential IPs come straight from ISPs. In other words, these are static residential proxies, and not the P2P ones rented from end users. This makes NetNut rather unique, and one of the few proxy sellers in the market offering such a product. The only other providers I’m aware of are Oxylabs and Luminati.

How? Well, NetNut uses the services of another company called DiviNetworks. It’s effectively a bandwidth-sharing business; but instead of buying traffic from people, it does so with internet service providers. In effect, you get server proxies that are registered as end users. It’s like a middle-ground between datacenter proxies and residential IPs.

This mix-and-match has its advantages. The proxies keep the stability, and much of the speed, of datacenter IPs. (There’s a reason why NetNut’s slogan – and all their Google ads – should out: NetNut is the fastest!) At the same time, they’re as hard to detect as residential proxies – websites will see your scraper as any regular Joe from Cincinnati or wherever you decide to locate it.

However, this also means you’ll be paying the price of residential proxies and receiving IPs in subnets.

But this is all theory. How do the proxies work in practice, and where does NetNut stand compared to other top residential proxy providers? Let’s find out.

NetNut Residential Proxies

NetNut commands a network of around 5 million static residential proxies. Knowing that the IPs come directly from internet service providers, the number is nothing short of impressive.

FEATURES: 3.5/5

NetNut’s proxies cover around 50 locations. They include the US, most European countries, as well as the largest countries in South America, Asia, and Oceania. Africa is the least represented region, with only a few locales to choose from. This should be enough for most geo-sensitive tasks, unless you have very specific needs. You can target cities and states, but only in the US.

The proxies use backconnect gateway servers. Because they’re static, you don’t have to rely on end-users and their devices. Instead, the servers can hold the same IP indefinitely. Rotation is also available, by adding special parameters to your proxy configuration. The SOCKS5 protocol isn’t supported, so you’ll have to make do with HTTP and HTTPS.

NetNut emphasizes that you can use its proxies with all websites, including search engines. This is a welcome approach in times where the other providers are requiring whitelists or shepherding clients toward specialized scraping tools (especially for Google). If you have a particular target in mind, you can ask NetNut for dedicated proxies to use with that website.

Both user:pass and IP whitelisting authentication methods are available. You can create sub-users if you enrol into the company’s reseller program.

  • Protocols: HTTP, HTTPS
  • Locations: 50 countries
  • Targeting: Country. City, state (US)
  • Authorization: User:pass, whitelisted IPs
  • Rotation: Every request

PRICING: 3/5

NetNut uses a traffic-based pricing model. You can choose from five plans, each having a set amount of gigabytes assigned to it. The cheapest plan gives you 20 GB for $300 ($15/GB).

Compared to other residential proxy providers, NetNut is around the middle of the pricing scale. It starts off rather expensive, at $15/GB, but the pricing transitions well into larger plans. For example, at 100 GB you’ll be paying $7/GB, and at 250 GB it drops even further to $5/GB. This is pretty fair for what you get. Just note that the rates might change depending on your use case.

Overall, NetNut’s pricing scheme works in your favor if you have larger needs, but it faces tough competition for smaller projects and tasks. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons why the company devotes so much space to resellers on its homepage.

  • Model: Bandwidth-based
  • Duration: Monthly
  • Smallest plan: $30 for 20GB ($15/GB)
  • Payment methods: PayPal, Credit card
  • Trial: 7 days

PERFORMANCE: 4/5

Proxy performance should be NetNut’s forte. After all, we’re talking about datacenter-level speeds and stability here combined with the anonymity of residential IPs. The provider further emphasizes this advantage by advertising one-hop connectivity:

Instead of going through a proxy server AND a P2P residential IP, your connection only needs to pass one server to reach the target website. End result? Speed, baby!

In practice, the proxies were indeed fast and stable. They also had impressive success rates to most of our tested websites. However, the overall success rate score got hit hard by connections to a Cloudflare server. Only 40% of the requests went through, which means that someone could have used the proxies to abuse Cloudflare’s CDN.

In our rankings for particular use cases, NetNut excelled in data scraping and market research, appearing among the top five our of tested providers. Theoretically, it should also work well for growing social media accounts due ISP addresses that don’t rotate.

So, NetNut’s static residential proxies are indeed among the better ones we’ve tried, even if not fully living up to the marketing hype. I’m only wary about the fact that they still come in subnets, and a reckless user can get hundreds of IPs banned in an instant.

netnut success rate score 6/9

Why it matters: Success rate shows if the proxies have been blocked by target websites.

netnut speed 2.96s

Why it matters: Faster proxies can accomplish more during a given period of time.

netnut multiple connections success rate 3/9

Why it matters: High success rate with multiple connections indicates good infrastructure and ability to withstand loads.

Among top 9 residential proxy providers:

  • Data aggregation: 4th
  • Data scraping: 4th
  • Ad verification: 8th
  • Market research: 4th
  • SEO: 8th
  • App dev & localization: 8th
  • Sneakers: 8th

More information here.

How to Use NetNut

Let’s take a look at the registration process, NetNut’s dashboard, and the proxy setup.

REGISTRATION

To create an account with NetNut, you have to enter your full name, (company) email, and a contact number or your Skype name. There’s also an optional field for domains you want to work with, so that the provider could adjust the service to your uses.

DASHBOARD

NetNut’s dashboard is a mixed bag. Some parts of it are very fleshed out, while others are lacking or missing altogether.

In the dashboard, you’ll be able to find proxy setup instructions, track your usage stats, invoices, see your active plans and buy new ones. You won’t be able to create or manage sub-users, change your credentials or whitelist IPs, or contact customer service.

NetNut seems to pay particular attention to statistics: There are three pages dedicated to tracking your proxy use visually and even an API for programmatic access.

There’s also a page to help with proxy setup called ‘Implementation guidelines’. I didn’t really like it, but more on that in a moment.

All in all, I found NetNut to be very stingy in general when it comes to information, and the user experience could really be improved with better documentation. Maybe I’m saying this just because I’m so used to self-service. But nowadays there’s little reason not to include simple IP whitelisting or even show your credentials in the dashboard.

PROXY SETUP

NetNut’s static residential proxies use backconnect servers. This means that instead of a proxy list, you get one address that accesses the provider’s proxy pool and automatically rotates IPs in the back end. NetNut has special addresses for Google, Instagram, and sneaker sites.

If you want a sticky IP, simply change the port number. You can add special parameters to restrict the IPs to specific a country or city.

NetNut provides basic instructions for proxy setup in the dashboard. They showcase some basic IP and port configurations as well as API code samples for popular programming languages. However, the examples are all static and fail to include available countries, so they’re not very comfortable to use. NetNut could learn a thing or two from Smartproxy or PacketStream in this regard.

Customer Support

EXPERIENCE: 4/5

NetNut assigns its clients a dedicated account manager. Most of the communication is done via Skype.

When I registered for a free trial, one of NetNut’s managers messaged me after 15 minutes or so. He immediately enabled my test account and provided me with instructions. They usually create a separate chat for active users and respond quite quickly. 

Aside from Skype, you can also send an email via a form on the website. There is no live chat.

 Conclusion

So, what can I say about NetNut? Quite a few positive things, actually.

The little squirrel packs a punch. Its residential proxies are stable and perform well. The speeds, while not quite as a fast as advertised, still manage to compete with the market leaders. Being able to keep the same residential IP for however long you want is an underestimated bonus.

Proxies aside, improvements are needed. This applies especially to the user experience side of things: documentation is lacking, setup instructions unfriendly, and customer support limited to Skype. That’s not to say the support is bad – quite the opposite, actually. But the whole interaction with NetNut feels like it hasn’t been perfected yet.

Don’t forget the fact that we’re dealing with static residential proxies here. Subnets are still a real issue. And if you want your proxy rotation to be anything else than other request – you’ll have to do it yourself. That’s not an issue for experienced scrapers. For new users, on the other hand? This added layer of complexity might cause problems.

Of course, NetNut is still a young provider. It’s only a matter of time until it streamlines things. Even now, it’s a terrific choice for scraping, market research, even social media automation – especially if you use thousands of gigabytes of data. Scale and flexibility are NetNut’s strong points, and they’re not to be underestimated.

All things considered, I’m giving NetNut a strong 8.6/10.

PROS

+ Static residential proxies
+ Good proxy performance
+ Dedicated support
+ Generous free trial

CONS

Not beginner friendly
Smaller plans aren’t cheap
Proxies come in subnets