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Online protection for all!

What Is OpenVPN?

If you're interested in protecting your sensitive online data with VPN support, then you need to get to know OpenVPN. It is the software that makes it all possible.

The purpose of OpenVPN is simple; it allows you to connect to other devices within one secure network. VPNs allow you to keep your online data safe by tunneling them through encrypted servers, but if you’re looking to keep that very same information safe, and share it with a few trustworthy people (whether they’re employees or friends or family), OpenVPN allows you to do that.

Consider it a secure tunnel that only you and those you want to know about it can access. You and those you want to join you on your OpenVPN network authenticate each other through pre-shared secret keys, certificates, or a user name/password set-up.

OpenVPN Advantages

There's any number of reasons why most VPN usage is enabled by OpenVPN software. To start, it's the most intuitive and easy-to-use of all VPN software. Newcomers and experts alike can appreciate OpenVPN's user-friendly

Secondly, OpenVPN has the strongest features of any VPN protocol, particularly in terms of online security. Users of OpenVPN will reap the benefits of software safeguarded by some of the most advanced technologies available. Peer authentication and powerful encryption standards keep your VPN experience safe.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, OpenVPN is an open protocol, as the name implies. The source code is available to all, and modifications from a vibrant and active community are encouraged and welcomed. OpenVPN thrives on the contributions of its users.

OpenVPN Features

  • Tunnel any IP subnetwork or virtual ethernet adapter over a single UDP or TCP port
  • Configure a scalable, load-balanced VPN server farm using one or more machines which can handle thousands of dynamic connections from incoming VPN clients
  • Use all of the encryption, authentication, and certification features of the OpenSSL library to protect your private network traffic as it transits the internet
  • Use any cipher, key size, or HMAC digest (for datagram integrity checking) supported by the OpenSSL library
  • Choose between static-key based conventional encryption or certificate-based public key encryption
  • Use static, pre-shared keys or TLS-based dynamic key exchange
  • Use real-time adaptive link compression and traffic-shaping to manage link bandwidth utilization
  • Tunnel networks whose public endpoints are dynamic such as DHCP or dial-in clients
  • Tunnel networks through connection-oriented stateful firewalls without having to use explicit firewall rules
  • Tunnel networks over NAT
  • Create secure ethernet bridges using virtual tap devices
  • Control OpenVPN using a GUI on Windows or Mac OS X

Choosing Between VPN Protocols

So why choose OpenVPN over PPTP or L2TP? What are the advantages of other VPN protocols?

A PPTP solution is easy to setup and use, and provides fast connection. It is recommended for users that are whose main concern is setup simplicity and accessing blocked or restricted content or websites in their area. PPTP is NOT recommended for those whose primary intent is network encryption and security since PPTP is not as secure and reliable. However, in certain countries, other VPN platforms are unavailable or banned so PPTP is better than nothing at all.

An L2TP/IPSec VPN connection is slower, yet secure and reliable. It may be a step up from PPTP but interoperability between devices can be difficult and varied.

The clear winner in the battle of VPN protocols is OpenVPN which provides speed and security, but is not an out of the box feature in most operating systems. We recommend OpenVPN because it often offers the best of both worlds (speed and security) when it comes to VPNs services if available to you.

How to Integrate OpenVPN on a Router

Sadly, OpenVPN is not an included option on most consumer routers right out of the box. We think it should be so we flash all our routers with enhanced firmware with full OpenVPN implementation as a client connection or to create your own OpenVPN server (this goes for PPTP as well.).

The one issue for most people with OpenVPN integration is the barrier of knowledge to entry and that is where we can give a helping hand. Each VPN provider has a different way to setting up their OpenVPN connection and how to do it within a router. Using a VPN provider within a router means that the setup only has to be done once and can cover all of your devices. Any device connected to an OpenVPN connected router will be using OpenVPN even if it is not an integrated option on your iPhone, Tablet, Roku, or SmartTV. OpenVPN for every device!

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