Setting Up A VPN Server On A Router
Three: Create The Client Config
First install Wireguard on your client machine, either the same way on Linux or through an app store if you’re using Windows, macOS, Android, or iPhone.
If you used an online-key-generator or QR script in Step One, then you can connect your phone by taking a picture of the QR code.
Once WireGuard is installed on the client, configure it using these values:
# Replace the PrivateKey value with the one from your client interfaceAddress = 10.0.0.2/24ListenPort = 51820PrivateKey = CNNjIexAmple4A6NMkrDt4iyKeYD1BxSstzer49b8EI=#use the VPN server's PublicKey and the Endpoint IP of the cloud instancePublicKey = WbdIAnOTher1208Uwu9P17ckEYxI1OFAPZ8Ftu9kRQw=AllowedIPs = 0.0.0.0/0Endpoint = 22.214.171.124:51820
There are many optional add-ons that you might want depending on your use-case, such as specifying DNS or pre-shared keys for an extra layer of security.
Start up the client in same way as the server if you are on Linux or through the application itself on other systems.
Is A VPN Really So Secure
It is important to note that VPNs do not function like comprehensive anti-virus software. While they protect your IP and encrypt your internet history, a VPN connection does not protect your computer from outside intrusion. To do this, you should definitely use anti-virus software such as Kaspersky Internet Security . Because using a VPN on its own does not protect you from Trojans, viruses, bots or other malware.
Once the malware has found its way onto your device, it can steal or damage your data, whether you are running a VPN or not. It is therefore important that you use a VPN together with a comprehensive anti-virus program to ensure maximum security.
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When To Use A VPN
Ideally, you should use a VPN whenever youre online. However, an always on VPN isnt realistic for everyone due to the slowdowns. Instead, we think its more practical to consider a handful of everyday use scenarios for VPNs, such as these:
- Using public networks
- Hiding activity from an internet service provider or the company running a browser
- Avoiding cache/cookies
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A great example is Chromecast, Google’s dead-simple method for getting content from your phone or computer onto your TV. If your VPN is running, you won’t be able to send video or media to your Chromecast. That’s because the VPN is preventing your device from communicating with other devices on your local network. You’ll have to switch off your VPN if you want to use this device, or others like it.
One solution to this problem is to look for a VPN that offer split-tunneling. This lets you designate which apps, and sometimes URLs, must use the VPN connection, or which should not use the VPN connection. Some VPNs make it even easier by allowing local area network traffic, meaning that the machine using the VPN can still talk to the devices on your network.
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Your Ip Address Is A Potential Problem You May Want To Hide It
Your IP address is a behind-the-scenes number your Internet provider assigns your computer that allows you to go anywhere on the Internet. Its something like the house number on your home.
Thats the good news. The somewhat bad news is that your IP address also gives away your computing location, at home or on the road. That bothers a lot of computer users.
Because governments have tracked people down by their IP address, with the help of the persons Internet Service Provider.
Also, online businesses of all kinds monitor activity coming from IP addresses. They may not know your name, but they know you like their website.
Online companies and networks can restrict someones access to a website based on where the user is located. Guess how they know where the user is? Rightthe users IP address.
Finally, hackers can break into networks and sometimes take over devices through its IP address.
As hard as IT experts, Internet providers and technology companies try, the Internet is not as safe or private as you wish it should be.
As you can see, we dont have nearly enough privacy, or security, as wed like.
How To Turn Your Windows 10 Computer Into A VPN Server
Microsoft Windows has a built-in function for hosting VPN servers, but it uses the out-dated and insecure VPN protocol PPTP.
Instead, we recommend that you set up an OpenVPN server using OpenVPNs software.
You can find detailed instructions for setting up an OpenVPN server on your Windows device, including commands, on OpenVPNs website.
Here are the basics of setting up a VPN server on Windows:
Now you can connect to your Windows VPN server while youre out and about.
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VPN Uses: Avoid Trackers
Your data and internet history is just that yours. So, it’s quite understandable that many people take issue with the fact ISPs and governments collect this data and use it for their own gain.
While many may argue that government tracking is legitimate, the techniques used are like a trawler fishing boat. Yes, they might catch what they need to, but the by-catch is vast. If you want to avoid getting your data caught up in that net without your consent, a VPN is the answer.
However, your ISP’s uses of your data might be rather less noble. While they already make money from your internet subscription, many top up their pay packet by selling users’ personal data to advertisers. If you want to avoid targeted advertising and feel a little more free to search for what you want without people keeping tabs, using a VPN can make that happen.
How To Get Started With A VPN
Heres how you get started with a VPN:
If you set up a VPN on a router like we had previously mentioned, youll only need to do this process once to secure your entire home especially if you buy a router with a VPN already installed.
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How To Setup A VPN At Home On Windows 10/windows 7
- Now, select the user you want to allow access to the VPN. Check the box next to your local accounts name.
- Ensure that the Through the Internet is checked on the next page.
- Ensure that Internet Protocol Version 4, File and Printer Sharing, and QoS Packet Scheduler are checked. Then, click on Allow Access.
- Go to Change Adapter Settings again. Right-click on Incoming Connections and select Properties.
- Double-click on Internet Protocol Version 4
- Switch to Specify IP addresses. Enter an IP range to accommodate multiple devices. Be sure to make this range unique by ensuring it does not clash with your routers DHCP IP range. Click Ok.
- Now its time to forward a port in your router. If you dont know the default gateway of your router , then type ipconfig in CMD and note the default gateway and the IP address of your computer.
- Type the address in a web browser and use your login credentials to access the routers settings.
- Go to Port Forwarding. Add a new one; select PPTP, enter the IP address, set starting port, and ending port as 1723.
- Go to Network &Internet > VPN > click on Add a VPN connection.
- Enter the credentials of your user account.
You are now connected and ready to access this Windows computer from anywhere in the world. Just ensure its always on.
Upgrade Your Router’s Firmware
First, check if your particular router model is supported by DD-WRT or supported by Tomato. If it is, you can go ahead and download the right firmware for your router from the relevant website. Now make sure your computer is connected to your router via Ethernet cable rather than Wi-Fi, so you can still connect to the router once you change the settings.
Open up the web interface to your router. If you know your router’s IP address already, just type it in. If you don’t know it, use the ipconfig command to view your IP address. Log in to your router using your username and password.
You should find a menu option saying Administration or something similar, depending on your particular router. Choose this option and look for an option that says Upgrade Firmware or Upload Firmware. Use this option to upload the new firmware you just downloaded.
Once the firmware upgrade is complete, you’ll need to restart your router. To be certain the old settings are cleared, turn off your router and wait for 30 seconds before turning it on again.
When the router restarts, go back to the web interface by typing the IP address into your browser again. You should set a username and password, and your new software is ready to use.
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A VPN Doesnt Make You Anonymous
What the hell is a VPN? I already wrote an article explaining VPNs using simple concepts, even comparing VPNs to movie car chases.
But if you want a brief recap, when you connect your computer or phone to a VPN server, you establish an encrypted tunnel between your device and that server. Nobody can see whats happening in the middle of this tunnel, not even your ISP.
And yet, it doesnt make you magically anonymous. Youre just moving the risk down the VPN tunnel as the VPN company can see all your internet traffic. In fact, many of them sell your data to scammers and advertisers already.
Thats why I dont recommend signing up to a VPN service. You cant trust them.
As a side note, many sites now rely on HTTPS to establish a secure connection between your browser and the website youre using, even TechCrunch. You should install the HTTPS everywhere extension to make sure that you use HTTPS as much as possible.
But VPNs can be useful from time to time. Sometimes you cant access a website from a public network because its blocked. Or you could be traveling to China and you want to be able to access your Gmail account. In those cases, its all about minimizing the risk while you use a VPN.
What Is A VPN Router
A VPN router works exactly like a normal VPN. Your traffic is redirected through a VPNs servers, allowing you to browse online completely undisturbed. All your activity will be hidden from anyone trying to spy on you, whether its petty thieves to data-hoarding corporations.
The reason youd want a VPN on your router is to provide network-wide online security. Once a router has been configured to download VPN firmware, all connected devices will be granted the benefits of VPN protection. That includes devices that may normally not have the ability to utilize VPN software to its fullest, like a lot of smart home devices. Heres a video explaining exactly how a router VPN works.
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VPN Uses: Watch More Live Sports
If you’re a sports fanatic, you’ll know that watching live events can get expensive pretty quickly. However, with a VPN and little bit of research, you could save a ton of cash and perhaps even find a pay-per-view event for free.
This is due to the fact that some sporting events are free-to-air in certain countries, while they’re paid-for in others. In recent times we’ve found cheaper or even free ways of catching the NBA, Super Bowl, Euros and Olympics with a VPN, so if there’s a big event on, it’s well worth checking out global broadcasting options for a better deal.
All you need to do is connect to a server in one of those countries and get watching. Plus, Tom’s Guide runs down all the big events and how to watch them, so check elsewhere on the site for info on where to catch a cheaper stream.
Setting Up Your Own VPN Server
As Woz commented on my previous VPN article before the Senate debacle, you could be running your own VPN server:
But if you cant trust your home connection or you have a slow upload speed on your home connection, its not really practical.
I played around with Algo VPN, a set of scripts that let you set up a VPN in the cloud in very little time, even if you dont know much about development. Ive got to say that I was quite impressed with Trail of Bits approach.
I created VPN servers on a DigitalOcean server, an Amazon Web Services instance and a Scaleway server. I could connect to all these VPNs from my Mac and iPhone just a couple of minutes after that.
Algo VPN automates the VPN installation process so that you dont have to establish an SSH connection with a server and run complicated command lines.
It takes three command lines to install the dependencies on your computer. After that, you should sign up to a cloud provider like DigitalOcean and run the Algo VPN setup wizard in your terminal. Im not going to detail the installation process as it can change after I publish this post, but everything is explained on the official GitHub repository.
On DigitalOcean, you dont have to create and configure your own server. Algo VPN takes care of that for you as it uses DigitalOceans API to create a server and install everything.
So heres a quick recap:
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Do I Need To Set Up A VPN
To make such VPN connections, you need to initially set up both ends of that connection the one on your laptop or home desktop, and the one in the main office. Sometimes, if you have an IT department, theyll tell you what app to download to your personal device and then give you some VPN credentials for your specific situation problem solved. Once you install that app and configure it, you can click a button and the link will establish itself and let you know youre connected.
If you dont have an IT department, you might have to set up your own VPN connections. Dont worry, its not as daunting as you might think.
Many business-class routers , and some small office/home office ones, have built-in VPN capability, so cost shouldnt be an issue. In fact, you may already have such a device, so youll only need to configure it!
Lets now look at two common VPN technologies: OpenVPN and IPsec.
What A VPN Does And Does Not Do
As with any security tool, it’s important to understand the limitations of a VPN. After all, you wouldn’t expect a Kevlar vest to save you from falling out of an airplane or a parachute to stop a bullet.
When you switch on a VPN, your traffic is routed through an encrypted tunnel to a server operated by the VPN company. That means that your ISP and anything connected to your router won’t be able to see your web traffic. From the VPN’s server, your traffic exits onto the public internet.
Because your traffic appears to come from the VPN’s server, your actual IP address is effectively hidden. That’s important, because IP addresses are distributed geographically and can be used to find your rough location. This can come in handy if you want to spoof your location. By connecting to a VPN server in London, you can make it appear as if you were accessing the internet from the UK.
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How Do VPNs Work
VPNs encrypt your entire connection. Encryption protects you against snoopers, third-party advertisers, and cybercriminals.
When your VPN is on, your browsing data is encrypted, sent to a secure VPN server, and decrypted, before being passed on to its original destination. The same process occurs when information is sent back to you. Even if a hacker intercepted your data along the way, all they’d see would be a jumble of indecipherable code.
Since even your ISP won’t be able to monitor you, you dont need to worry about your browsing habits being logged and sold off to advertisers. Its a simple and effective way to maintain your privacy.
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Alternatively, you can install the VPN on your router. That way, all the data from your local network to the internet is funneled through the VPN, giving you all the protection without causing any of the fuss on the local level. Setting up your router to use a VPN can sound daunting, but some VPN companies will sell you a pre-configured router if you want to give it a try. Still, this solution is not for everyone; It’s perhaps best left to people with a determined DIY sensibility.
While many people are using VPNs to stream online content, many streaming services are very good at blocking VPN usage. One possible solution is purchasing a static IP address from your VPN provider. These “clean” addresses aren’t associated with VPNs, giving you a better chance of slipping past attempts to block your access.
Speed will always be an issue with VPNs. When a VPN connection is active, your web traffic is going through more machines and more fiber. The result is increased latency and slower transfer speeds. Not all VPNs are the same in how much they affect your connection, but you will see some impact.
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