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We have a linux based environment hosted remotely and a few spare machines in the office. I'd like to use those machines as workers for the remotely hosted application though they would need permanent access to the hosted servers via the private IP subnet. What is the best (and ideally free) way to achieve this?

Am I looking at a VPN solution?

Is there another way to do this other than VPN?


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up vote 11 down vote accepted

I would recommend linking them together with OpenVPN. OpenVPN allows you to link networks together. You can find a very detailed walkthrough here. Everything is secure that way.

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Thanks that guide was what I was looking for. Looks like its a winner unless someone comes up with a brilliant next new thing – Harel Mar 7 '11 at 10:59
+1 The only other option I would think of would be a dedicated link between your DC and the Office, but that's likely to be extremely expensive. – Niall Donegan Mar 7 '11 at 11:10

I think OpenVPn may be your answer (see what TiZon said).

However just to complete the picture, serious ways of doing this would be:

The firewall in location A maintains a constant VPN to the firewall in location B, allowing servers behind either firewall to communicate as if they were on the same network.

  • MPLS

Have a MPLS line terminated into your two locations, and send traffic into the telecom provider's MPLS cloud. To your network devices it will look like all your boxes are on the same layer 2 network, but in practise their communications will be encapulated into the MPLS network.

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+1 for showing alternatives. Although, when you say "serious", you must mean "requiring more money for diminishing returns", no? – David Schmitt May 28 '11 at 10:39

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