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We've had numerous support hassles with software VPN clients.

Our remote devs need to connect to a number of different customer VPNs. Are there any reasonably priced VPN client boxes we could supply for them to use in their SOHO settings - so that they wouldn't need to get VPN client software working on their machines?

We need something that is flexible enough to work with common VPN servers - as we won't always be controlling that side of the connection.

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closed as off-topic by Falcon Momot, Tom O'Connor Jul 10 '13 at 9:38

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  • "Questions about hardware or software used in a home setting are off-topic because they require answers that may not be practical for the business and support professionals here. You should try asking on Super User instead." – Tom O'Connor
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1 Answer 1

IME if you can't control both ends of a VPN then don't expect much success. IPSEC appeared to be a god send for solving these problems - but by the time it got implemented where were just too many different ways to configure it - even if you get your implementations from the same source.

Although there are relatively cheap off-the-shelf units which are straightforward to implement in a planned network - this approach does not scale down to SOHO installations where the internet connection may be via a modem which requires client software/non ethernet connection to the client device or a router which implements masquerading.

Have you tried using openvpn? Software will run on every flavour of Unix/Linux/POSIX including MacOSX and Microsoft NT based kernels, uses SSL so easily crosses NAT.

(note: SSL tunneling does have additional overheads which you don't have with IPSEC, however I've previously run VOIP over SSL based VPN - before openVPN was as mature as it is now - and had no detectable problems with jitter / frame loss, bandwidth overhead was relatively low too. I've not run OpenVPN over such a large network but given the same underlying technologies I wouldn't expect any issues)

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+1 for OpenVPN. We use it a lot and it works a charm. Easy to configure, can easily handle multiple configurations for connections to a variety of targets. Plus: you can test a config for a particular connection, then simply mail it to everybody who needs to connect, with simple instructions on what to change (if anything). Recipient pops the config file into a specific folder, and Bob's your uncle. –  wolfgangsz Aug 30 '10 at 13:28

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