Best VPN Protocols: OpenVPN vs PPTP vs L2TP vs Others

Best VPN Protocols: OpenVPN vs PPTP vs L2TP vs Others

The VPN server acts as a middleman between your device and the internet, so websites and online apps only see the server’s IP address and not your own. OpenVPN Access Server supports a wide range of configurations, including secure and granular remote access to internal network and/ or private cloud network resources and applications. OpenVPN Access Server is apiece of softwarethat you install on yourown server, which then provides VPN services toyour clients. Thelicensesyou have bought aredesigned to lift the restrictions on the concurrent connection countsfor users connecting toyour server. If you do not already own a server in which you can install Access Server on, the licenses themselves will not grant you access to any VPN services.

This allows for testing all the functions of the Access Server without having to pay a license key. So if you want to try out the Access Server, install Access Server on your Linux OS and you can start testing. Upon request we will also grant free temporary trial license keys for a larger number of connections if you require this for your testing purposes.

what is openvpn

If you are using the Amazon AWS tiered instances licensing systemthen things are unfortunately not quite so easy, but still possible. Due to the way the licensing system works on Amazon AWS, the instance properties are very firmly tied to the amount of licensed connections. At this time you cannot click a button to switch from a 10 connected devices instance to a 25 connected devices instance. If the old system was configured to function on IP basis instead of an FQDN DNS address, then clients that were installed on the old Access Server instance will continue to attempt to reach the old IP address. If possible, move the IP address to the new instance so that clients can find the server again.

Requires third-party software.Strong Windows desktop support.Multiple device and platform support.Multiple desktop and mobile OS support. A great alternative to OpenVPN.Has promise to be fast and efficient. Still in development.Faster and more secure alternative to PPTP and L2TP.Secure, stable, and mobile-oriented. The PPTP/L2TP/SOCKS5 protocols are provided for devices lacking compatibility with the Private Internet Access application or OpenVPN protocol.

But a value lower than 10 on an OpenVPN Access Server BYOL type license key is never possible. So if you intend to buy a license key for 10 connections and then ask us to split it up into 2 license keys of 5 connections each, that is not possible. You can have 500 user accounts on your Access Server but only license it for 100 connections, and if 25 of those 500 users are connected then you can still connect 75 VPN tunnels with any of the 500 accounts. So in other words, the licensing system does not look at how many user accounts you have, but how many VPN tunnel are connected at the same time.

We would then issue free 2 user license keys for trial purposes upon request. We have cancelled that system and instead when you install the OpenVPN Access Server product now, and do not provide a license key, it will automatically allow 2 simultaneous VPN tunnel connections. Therefore you do not need to contact us anymore to try the product out.

If this was not your intention, and you have not yet activated the licenses you have bought, please submit a refund request on our ticketing system, and look at our Private Tunnel offering instead. If you do not have a license key at all, and you do not work for an organization that has a license key, then you can still contact us. This is where we take an existing already activated license key, and remove it from our system (revoke it) and replace it with a new license key that can be activated on an OpenVPN Access Server installation. For example when you reinstall your server or when you replace hardware on a server (new mainboard, new network card, that sort of thing). All license keys sold for OpenVPN Access Server are single-activation and lock to the hardware and software properties that you installed the license key on.

What is the difference between OpenVPN and VPN?

VPN Speeds: Considered the fastest VPN protocol, faster than PPTP and L2TP/IPSec. VPN Comparison: OpenVPN provides a highly reliable, easy to install, and stable connection. Port Configuration: OpenVPN can be configured to use either TCP or UDP ports. It is compatible with MS Windows, Linux, and Mac.

But if you want to set up your own OpenVPN server based on our OpenVPN Access Server product, and need more than 2 simultaneous connections, then purchasing a license for OpenVPN Access Server is the way to go. In most cases this problem is caused by an inability of the OpenVPN Access Server installation to reach the Internet for an online activation.

With a license for the OpenVPN Access Server program you can unlock a certain amount of simultaneous VPN tunnel connections to your OpenVPN Access Server installation. You also get access to our professional support via the support ticket system. If you are already using a VPN but still trying to optimize your service, this feature breakdown of the most popular VPN security tunneling protocols should assist in that decision. PPTP, L2TP, and OpenVPN are all Virtual Private Network protocols used in order to establish a fast, secure, and reliable connection between two nodes. In this article, we will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each protocol one by one, so that it can be clarified which protocol is better for which user.

What is OpenVPN and how does it work?

OpenVPN is an open source connection protocol used to facilitate a secure tunnel between two points in a network. In layman’s terms, this means OpenVPN is a trusted technology used by many Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, to make sure any data sent over the internet is encrypted and private.

PPTP/L2TP/SOCKS5 should be used for masking one’s IP address, censorship circumvention, and geolocation. The best protocols for peer to peer downloading/torrenting are OpenVPN and SSTP as they are best for anonymity and security.

In rare cases this error can also show up if the license key has already been used before for activation – all license keys are single-activation keys only. To clarify, 10 connections on a license key is the minimum for the BYOL licensing system. It’s important to note here that any value higher is possible, but lower is not. For example you can buy a license key licensed for 11 connections, or 35, or 524, and so on.

What is OpenVPN?

You will very easily be able to confirm that your Access Server allows 2 simultaneous connections by logging in to the Admin UI and looking on the right hand side at how many connections your server is licensed for. It will say 2, unless you have activated a license key to change that amount. You may notice that different wording is used here and there in documentation and on the website.

  • At this time you cannot click a button to switch from a 10 connected devices instance to a 25 connected devices instance.
  • Due to the way the licensing system works on Amazon AWS, the instance properties are very firmly tied to the amount of licensed connections.
  • If you are using the Amazon AWS tiered instances licensing systemthen things are unfortunately not quite so easy, but still possible.

If the license key is not expired, we will gladly help you to move the license key. In the past, years ago, Access Server would not allow any connections at all if you didn’t have a license key.

So if security isn’t essential, you can use PPTP for streaming content as it is fastest. For some added layer of security, use L2TP/IPsec even though it is slower than PPTP. Before using these protocols, check streaming performance while using OpenVPN as PPTP and L2TP/IPsec are known to have major security flaws. Right now, the OpenVPN protocol is believed to be the most secure VPN protocol available.

If you want to move your license key to another installation, this is only ever possible when the license key is not expired. We only provide support on license keys if the license key is not expired. So if you come to us with a request to move a license key from one Access Server to another, and the license key is expired, we cannot help you.

Even though it doesn’t offer the fastest possible speeds, it can safeguard your private data in a highly secure way. When it comes to IPSec, this protocol comes with capable encryption but it’s still not fully explored in terms of its security and potential vulnerabilities. OpenVPN is the open-source VPN (Virtual Private Network) client, used over the PPTP (Point to Point Tunneling Protocol). It allows you to connect to a remote network over a secure, encrypted connection and mask your IP addresses over all ports. Since there is only one “hop,” the network speeds are barely effected and are far more secure.

Please verify that Internet access is possible from this Access Server and that the DNS settings are correct. Verify on the command line that you can ping and reach Internet addresses from the operating system that the OpenVPN Access Server is installed on. Check that any firewalls or security groups are not blocking access. If your system is intentionally cut off from the Internet or if it is not possible to resolve this problem, request or perform an offline activation.

With the BYOL model you can purchase a license key through our main website and activate it on your Access Server. These license keys are single-activation and lock to the system you activate it on, and unlock a certain amount of simultaneous VPN connections for the duration of the license key. When the license key expires, the license key disappears off the server. As explained below this licensing model is also available on Amazon AWS if you choose the BYOL type OpenVPN Access Server instance from the AWS Marketplace. The instances that specifically mention the amount of “connected devices” do not work with the BYOL licensing model but are instead billed directly through Amazon.

In such a case you will have to contact us through the support ticket system to request a license key reissue. With this licensing model you pay for the AWS instance itself and any license keys that you purchase through us and activate on your Access Server installation. If no license key is installed, the Access Server goes into a demonstration mode where all functions work without time limitations, but it will only allow 2 simultaneous VPN connections to be established. For more information see the troubleshooting page regarding Amazon AWS tiered instance software licensing. The BYOL model works on any OpenVPN Access Server, except the Amazon AWS tiered instance type that comes with a specification of the amount of connected devices allowed.

What the licensing system really counts is the amount of active VPN tunnels. In this demonstration mode, all functions are available and there is no time limit. However, you are limited to only 2 simultaneous active VPN tunnels to the Access Server.

what is openvpn

How OpenVPN Works

This Marketplace image is suitable for the BYOL licensing system as long as you do not use auto-scaling and do not change the instance type after activating a license key. If you do then the virtual hardware that the license key has locked to will change and the license key may become invalid.


Please also note that having a license does not mean you can connect to one of our servers. A license key is meant for an OpenVPN Access Server installation on a server you provide and manage. Purchasing and having a license key does not mean that you can connect to with your OpenVPN client program.

So if you have 500 user accounts but you anticipate that only about 90 of them will ever be online at the same time, then a license key for 100 is perfectly fine. A VPN, or Virtual Private Network is a software service that encrypts all of the data sent to and from the internet and routes it through a VPN server in another location.

But the best option is always to set up an FQDN DNS address, which we recommend for any Access Server installation. With that, you can simply update the DNS record to point it to the IP address of the new instance, and clients will then automatically find the correct instance. And finally of course, the old instance should be stopped to avoid continuing to incur costs on the old instance. On Amazon AWS Marketplace you can look for “OpenVPN Access Server”. You’ll see a number of results. One of these will simply be titled “OpenVPN Access Server”.

Some may recommend L2TP/IPsec to assist in increasing download speeds, but as L2TP/IPsec has security flaws, I would stay away from it when torrenting. It’s also important that you use a service with the VPN kill switch feature to make sure that if your connection does drop, your torrenting activity isn’t exposed. For those using a VPN primarily for streaming geo-restricted content, such as streaming Disney+ outside the US, try using PPTP or L2TP/IPsec. Remember that these protocols offer little to no encryption security.

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