I apologize if this was hashed out before but maybe my situation is different. Please bear with me.

  1. I have a 2016 Server box with OpenVPN server (Community edition) installed.
  2. This server can be reachable by either local IP of the server or by simply \servername within the local network at that location.
  3. I am not using AD or a DNS server. The server is pointing to a public DNS service. This is a simple file server for about 6 local clients in the office. nothing fancy. The server is hard wired.
  4. The server has a local IP of 192.168.1.x as do the other machines local to that server. Simple enough
  5. Starting OpenVPN works no problems there. VPN server IP


On the remote client across town

  1. I can start the open vpn client. This works
  2. The local internal IP is 192.168.0.x on a Windows 10 box
  3. Client VPN IP is
  4. I can ping and get a response from above
  5. I open file explorer on the client and do: \ I see my shares
  6. If I do \Servername it does not connect, or times out.
  7. I have tested this with both windows firewall turned off on either end.

Any insight to this would be helpful. We can talk about ports however for the sake of this conversation we all understand that the firewall is off on both ends for testing only. (A list of ports that need to be opened on both ends would be extremely helpful however)

Client config below:

remote xx.xxx.xx.xx
port 12345 
proto tcp4-client
dev tun 
# dev tap
dhcp-option DNS


tls-auth "C:\\Program Files\\OpenVPN\\config\\ta.key" 1 
remote-cert-tls server 

tun-mtu 1500 
tun-mtu-extra 32 
mssfix 1450 

ca "C:\\Program Files\\OpenVPN\\config\\ca.crt" 
cert "C:\\Program Files\\OpenVPN\\config\\ClientVPN.crt" 
key "C:\\Program Files\\OpenVPN\\config\\ClientVPN.key" 

cipher AES-128-CBC 


verb 3 
mute 20

Please help


1 Answer 1


It sounds like your clients are unable to resolve the server's hostname to an IP address. You need to configure some means of name resolution. Either set up a DNS server or add entries to the clients' hosts or lmhosts files which map the server name to its IP.

  • Thanks for the response. Do you mean add an entry for the servers internal IP 192.xxx.xxx.xxx or the VPN IP? Thank You. And to clarify only on the client side correct?
    – Chett
    Commented Jun 14, 2019 at 17:27
  • Yes, on your client machines you need to add an entry to hosts point to the server at If you want to be able to ping the clients from the server by hostname, you'll need to add an entry to the hosts file on the server for each client, e.g. client1. Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 8:24
  • Setting up a DNS server that both your clients and server register with and query would make life a lot easier though. Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 8:26

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