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is there any Free Cisco VPN Client software for Windows ?

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

Shrew Soft VPN client is a free IPSec client that runs on 32-bit and 64-bit Vista.

It does not support existing Cisco VPN profiles (.pcf files) though.

EDIT: Cisco VPN profile import was added in version 2.1.5

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It is relatively simple to configure all the appropriate parameters, instead of importing a .pcf file. If you look at the .pcf file, it's not hard to get all the relevant settings, other than the encoded group password, since it's, well... encoded. – Dominic Eidson Jul 4 '09 at 21:11
Yes, and the group password hash is a problem if all you get from your clients is a cisco .pcf file. You really cannot ask the group password from them. NCP Secure Entry client (not free) can use .pcf files as-is, so you don't have this problem. – mika Jul 6 '09 at 6:57
The next version Shrew Soft VPN Client will have pcf import. Available now in the 2.1.5-rc-1 From change log: Add support to windows gui components for importing cisco PCF files. For PSK based modes, this is a one step process. For RSA based modes, the certificate info must be assigned manually in a second step. Cisco PCF files don't contain certificate data so this cannot be automated. – Adam Jul 15 '09 at 14:57
@mika: The group password in the PCF is not a hash and can in fact be decoded. Google for cisco-decrypt.c or "cisco vpn password decrypt". – James Sneeringer Sep 24 '09 at 14:01

The official Cisco VPN client is free, but you need to have purchased a Cisco service contract with your hardware to download it.

Cisco VPN Client FAQ:

Q. Where can I download the VPN Client software? A. You must log in and possess a valid service contract in order to access the VPN Client software. VPN Client software can be downloaded from the Software Center (registered customers only) . If you do not have a valid service contract associated with your profile you cannot log in and download the VPN Client software.

There is also a program called vpnc, the client primarily for UNIX systems, which runs on Windows with cygwin.

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is there any other vpn client whcih support cisco vpn – joe Jul 3 '09 at 15:41
also the Cisco client doesn't work under Vista64 and they have officially stated that they have no intention of ever supporting it – Catherine MacInnes Jul 3 '09 at 15:57
Good point - see – crb Jul 3 '09 at 16:11

I think this article summarizes the situation.

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It really depends on what kind of cicso VPN you are using.

I don't have any experience with cisco PIX, but if you have an ASA you should run the VPN setup wizard for remote access VPN. On the seconds screen of the wizard you can configure it to support "Microsoft Windows client using L2TP over IPSec".

If you can, you may want to look into the SSL VPN. I think it's sufficiently good to justify the $80/concurrent user price tag. The SSL VPN bypasses many of the nat traversal problems most VPN solutions have because it's looks like regular TCP and UDP to a NAT gateway.

The best part about SSL VPN is that you download the client directly from the ASA and it works with more operating systems than the other client does. The SSL VPN client installs on Ubuntu without any issues.

I don't use cisco for everything. VPN just happens to be one of those things I think they have a good product offering for. I like Foundry for switches, and the jury is still out on routers until I try more than just Vyatta and Cisco.

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It isn't too hard to google for a copy of the cisco client. Universities are usually a good bet for having a copy publicly available.

Of course, I can't condone downloading it without a valid cisco contract.

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Depending on your Cisco's configuration you can actually use the Vista VPN client to connect to a Cisco VPN device. We can connect to our VPN Concentrator via the Windows client.

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