Wednesday, March 22, 2023

What Is VPN In Aws

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Accessibility To Amazon Web Services

AWS Client VPN – AWS Networking Masterclass

The first feature that distinguishes these two network solutions is the accessibility of Amazon Web Services. When it comes to AWS Direct Connection, it uses a fiber-optic network that provides very fast and easy access to Amazon VPC. This is not the case with VPNs, considering that the connection is encrypted, so accessibility is reduced.

Create The Site To Site VPN

This step is completed in the AWS CLI as Cloud Formation doesnt support it yet. Change customer-gateway-id;and;transit-gateway-id;to the values in the output section of the Cloud Formation stack, or look it up in the AWS console.

 aws ec2 create-vpn-connection --customer-gateway-id cgw-045678901234567890

–transit-gateway-id tgw-56789012345678901 –type ipsec.1 –options “”

Step 2 Configure The Server

  • If youre using a Linux or Mac machine, open your terminal and SSH to your server as openvpnas:

  • Next, type yes for the agreement, then youll be prompted with how you want to configure your VPN.
  • Type yes for the following 2 prompts:
Should client traffic be routed by default through the VPN?> Press ENTER for default : yesShould client DNS traffic be routed by default through the VPN?> Press ENTER for default : yes
  • Just hit enter for the rest to have all the defaults confirmed.
  • Once you reached the end, change the password for the user. Enter a new password twice and youre all set.
sudo passwd openvpn
  • Next, open a browser window and type
  • Login with openvpn and the password you just set.
  • Once in the Admin dashboard of OpenVPN, click configuration and go to VPN Settings
  • Scroll down and then apply the following changes:

Make sure the toggle for Should client Internet traffic be routed through the VPN? is set to Yes

Change the toggle for Have clients use specific DNS servers to Yes

Enter custom DNS server and set Primary DNS Server to and the Secondary DNS Server to

  • To know why I changed the DNS Server:
  • Save the settings and then click on Update Running Server

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Ipsec Connectivity Options For Vmware Cloud On Aws

The choice of connectivity between the SDDCs depends on various factors such as location of the datacenter, application requirement, CAPEX/OPEX etc. After considering these factors, you may want to opt for a Direct Connect Private VIF connection or Internet-based connectivity.

DX is a dedicated connectivity that runs from your SDDC to AWS DCs. DX has low latency and high bandwidth as compared to the Internet-based connectivity . Many customers today use DX as a primary and internet as a secondary connectivity option.

With internet connectivity option, there is always a risk of “Man In The Middle” attack and IPSec VPN is one of the options to avoid such attacks. Typically DX is used for accessibility of business critical applications across the sites whereas VPN based connectivity over internet is suitable for use cases such as disaster recovery or non-business critical application across the sites where latency is not a requirement.

VMware Cloud on AWS offers two options for IPSec VPNs – policy-based IPSec VPN and route-based IPSec VPN.

Fluctuations In Data Transmission And Overall User Experience

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Considering that in the case of AWS Direct Connection, the Internet is not used, but a private network, network fluctuations are generally minimal and the overall user experience is much better. As VPN uses the Internet, the stability of the network depends on external factors, so with this network service you have to agree to tolerance in such situations. The user experience is fine, but it is variable, which can be a significant hurdle for some people.

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Create Openssl Certificates And Keys

The best tutorial I found for using OpenSSL is here.

I used OpenSSL on my Mac Terminal. You can download it here.

The first thing we need to do is create a self-signed certificate. The command below creates a 2048-bit private key and a CSR from scratch. You always need to enter some parameters when you create a CSR .

See my example below:

bash-3.2$ openssl req \> -newkey rsa:2048 -nodes -keyout runvmc.key \> -out runvmc.csrGenerating a 2048 bit RSA private key.............+++..........+++writing new private key to 'runvmc.key'-----You are about to be asked to enter information that will be incorporated into your certificate request.What you are about to enter is what is called a Distinguished Name or a DN.There are quite a few fields but you can leave some blankFor some fields there will be a default value,If you enter '.', the field will be left blank.-----Country Name  :GBState or Province Name  :CheshireLocality Name  :MarpleOrganization Name  :VMCOrganizational Unit Name  :AWSCommon Name  :runvmc.localEmail Address :Please enter the following 'extra' attributesto be sent with your certificate requestA challenge password :Secure_Passwordbash-3.2$ 

Once your CSR is requested, you can view and verify its been set up correctly.

Then the next step is to generate a self-signed certificate : this command below creates a self-signed certificate from an existing private key and :

I have now three files I will need for my OpenVPN connection: runvmc.crt, runvmc.key and runvmc.csr.

Vpc With Public And Private Subnets And Aws Site

The configuration for this scenario includes a virtual private cloud with a public subnet and a private subnet, and a virtual private gateway to enable communication with your own network over an IPsec VPN tunnel. We recommend this scenario if you want to extend your network into the cloud and also directly access the internet from your VPC. This scenario enables you to run a multi-tiered application with a scalable web front end in a public subnet, and to house your data in a private subnet that is connected to your network by an IPsec AWS Site-to-Site VPN connection.

This scenario can also be optionally configured for IPv6you can use the VPC wizard to create a VPC and subnets with associated IPv6 CIDR blocks. Instances launched into the subnets can receive IPv6 addresses. We do not support IPv6 communication over a Site-to-Site VPN connection on a virtual private gateway; however, instances in the VPC can communicate with each other via IPv6, and instances in the public subnet can communicate over the internet via IPv6. For more information about IPv4 and IPv6 addressing, see IP Addressing in your VPC.

For information about managing your EC2 instance software, see Managing software on your Linux instance in the Amazon EC2 User Guide for Linux Instances.


The following diagram shows the key components of the configuration for this scenario.

The configuration for this scenario includes the following:

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Security Groups And Network Acls

Amazon defines a security group as a virtual firewall that controls the traffic for one or more instances. Rules are added to each security group, which allows traffic to or from its associated instances. Basically, a security group controls inbound and outbound traffic for one or more EC2 instances. It can be found on both the EC2 and VPC dashboards in the AWS web management console.

Security group diagram:

Build A VPN To Your Aws Vpc

setup a FREE VPN server in the cloud (AWS)

By Alastair Cook on February 1, 2017

Sometimes applications are built in the cloud with no need to connect to your on-premises IT. But far more often applications in the cloud need to talk to applications in your existing data centers. We usually want network routing over a connection between our cloud and our data centers. This connection between on-premises and cloud is even more important during a cloud migration. Part of your IT has moved but part is still on-premises. AWS offers several ways to connect your on-premises data centers to your VPCs. Direct Connect is a dedicated WAN link into an AWS location. A VPN connection uses the Internet but puts your traffic inside an encrypted tunnel. AWS has multiple VPN options too. You can have a hardware VPN appliance or software in the AWS location. Either way, you also need a VPN appliance in your datacenter too.

I am going to connect the VPC I created in a previous post. I am going to use an IPSec VPN from my firewall to the VPC.

First I need a Virtual Private Gateway . This is the router for the AWS side of the VPN. In the VPC dashboard, select Virtual Private Gateways and click Create Virtual Private Gateway:

All that the VPG needs is a name. Since this VPG will be for my Sydney VPC I included the VPC in its name. Now I click the Attach to VPC button and select my SydneyVPC from the list. The process to attach takes a few minutes.

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Overview Of Cisco Dmvpn On Aws

The Cisco Dynamic Multipoint VPN is a Cisco IOS software solution for building multipoint GRE IPsec encrypted tunnels. Its a centralized VPN hub-and-spoke topology typically created between Cisco hardware routers in the past. These are the main differences between DMVPN and typical VPN technologies:

  • DMVPN allows for dynamic public IP addresses on spoke routers .
  • DMVPN allows for the dynamic creation of spoke-to-spoke tunnels without human intervention.
  • DMVPN uses several technologies to provide the features above:

  • Next Hop Resolution Protocol This is how the spokes can obtain the public IP address of remote site networks that it may want to build a tunnel and route traffic to.
  • Multipoint GRE Tunnel Interfaces This is a single GRE interface that can support multiple GRE and IPsec tunnels. ;
  • For AWS, the DMVPN technology runs on a virtualized Cisco IOS XE router called the Cloud Services Router 1000V that is available in the AWS Marketplace. The CSR runs as an EC2 instance within your VPC to provide the hub router functionality. The hub router sits in your VPC with an Elastic IP address to one of its interfaces that resides in a public subnet. This EIP is configured as the tunnel destination between the spoke routers running in your remote locations and your AWS VPC. The tunnel between the hub and the spoke is always up but the tunnels between the spokes are created dynamically only when needed. ;Figure 3 below shows at a high level what this looks like.


    Set Up A Virtual Private Gateway

    In Amazon, the virtual private gateway represents the Amazon end of the tunnel.

  • In the VPC service sidebar, locate the Virtual Private Network menu and select Virtual Private Gateways.
  • Click Create Virtual Private Gateway.
  • Fill in the form.
  • Provide a Name tag. Set a name that helps you identify the gateway easily.
  • Select Amazon default ASN
  • Click Create Virtual Private Gateway.
  • On the Virtual Private Gteways dashboard, right-click the newly created virtual private gateway and select Attach to VPC.
  • Select your VPC from the drop-down menu and click Yes, Attach.
  • Next, you need to manually enable route propagation for the virtual private gateway.

  • In the VPC service sidebar, locate the Virtual Private Cloud menu and select Route Tables.
  • In the list of routing tables, select the main route table for your VPC.
  • At the bottom of the screen, select Route Propagation. If your virtual private gateway is not listed, make sure that it’s attached to the VPC.
  • Click Edit route propagation.
  • Select the Propagate checkbox and click Save.
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    Security Groups For Database Servers

    If we consider a SQL server database, then you need to open the SQL server port to access it.

    We’ve allowed the source to come from the internet. Because it’s a Windows machine, you may need RDP access to log on and do some administration. We’ve also added RDP access to the security group. You could leave it open to the internet, but that would mean anyone could try and hack their way into your box. In this example, we’ve added a source IP address of, so the only IP ranges from that address can RDP to the instance.

    Tunnel Does Not Connect

    User Network

    If the tunnel connection is still Down, there are several things you can verify:

    • The AWS tunnel will not initiate a VPN connection. The connection attempt must be initiated from the Customer Gateway.

    • Ensure that your source traffic is coming from the same IP as the configured customer gateway. AWS will silently drop all traffic to the gateway whose source IP address does not match.

    • Ensure that your configuration matches values supported by AWS. This includes IKE versions, DH groups, IKE lifetime, and more.

    • Recheck the route table for the VPC. Ensure that propagation is enabled and that there are entries in the route table that have the virtual private gateway you created earlier as a target.

    • Confirm that you do not have any firewall rules that could be causing an interruption.

    • Check if you are using a policy-based VPN as this can cause complications depending on how it is configured.

    • Further troubleshooting steps can be found at the AWS Knowledge Center.

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    How To Create A Site To Site VPN Connection In Aws

    May 29, 2020 / Eternal Team

    In this blog post, we are going to create a site-to-site VPN connection between AWS cloud and on-premise network using VPN tunneling.

    Below are the components of the site to site VPN:

    • Customer Gateway: A customer gateway is a physical device or software application on your side of the Site-to-Site VPN connection.
    • Virtual Private Gateway: A virtual private gateway is the VPN concentrator on the AWS side of the Site-to-Site VPN connection. You create a virtual private gateway and attach it to the VPC from which you want to create the Site-to-Site VPN connection.

    To have more clarity, let us show you a simple layout:

    Create a site to site VPN connection

    1. Login to AWS console and go to VPC

    2. Then go to Customer Gateways and click Create Customer Gateway

    3. Provide a name and public facing IP of your on-premise network. Click Create Customer Gateway

    4. One success message will be displayed, click Close

    A new customer gateway has been successfully created. Next, we are going to create the virtual private gateway and enable route propagation for it.

    5. Click Virtual Private Gateways

    6. Enter Name tag of your virtual private gateway.

    7. One success message will be displayed, click Close and Our virtual private gateway successfully created

    Note: In order to use this virtual private gateway with our VPC, we need to attach it first with our VPC.

    8. Select the virtual private gateway and from Actions click Attach to VPC.

    A Step By Step Tutorial For Building Your Own Free VPN Server

    A VPN is important if you want to have more secure and safe browsing and also using it when you want to create access to your VPC. Sometimes getting a VPN can be hard at times, especially when you have to pay to use the service. In this article, I will show you how you can set up a working VPN server on AWS and you dont have to necessarily pay for anything at all to use it. Lets get started.

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    Configure Vpc Subnet Routing

    The routing that you will see configured on the Transit Gateway is only used within the Transit Gateway itself. So we now need to manually add routes to VPC subnets that you want to use the VPN. In our case we are leaving VPC-VPC traffic to use the VPC peer, and only adding an on-premise network to the subnet routes. Get the Transit Gateway Id from the Cloud Formation template output, and get the route VPC subnets route table Id;

     aws ec2 create-route --route-table-id rtb-89012345678901234 --destination-cidr-block --transit-gateway-id tgw-56789012345678901 

    Deploy Aws Client VPN Endpoint

    AWS – Setup Site-to-Site VPN Connection

    There are a number of steps to follow to get this right.

    Go to the AWS console and VPN / Client VPN Endpoints and create a new Client VPN Endpoint.

    Lets go through the configuration below.

    • Name tag: choose something that is relevant to you
    • Description: specify what this VPN Endpoint is for
    • Client IPv4 CIDR: this is a subnet from which your remote clients will pick up their IPs from. In my example, I used and my remote Mac picked up the IP
    • Server certificate ARN: choose the ARN of the certificate you uploaded before ARNs uniquely identify;AWS;resources).
    • Authentication Options: you can either use the mutual authentication or Active Directory authentication. In my case, I used the AD I created earlier.
    • Connection Logging: you can log the connection details of the client connections in CloudWatch.
    • DNS Server: you can allocate DNS servers to your remote clients.
    • Enable split-tunnel: with this option off, all the traffic from the client is funnelled over the SSL tunnels. With this option on, only the traffic to the routes we will specify in the VPN configuration will go through the tunnel. Well have a look at an example shortly.

    The next step is to associate a network in the VPC you want to access with your Client VPN connection.

    Finally, you need to edit the routes to tell the client how to reach remote resources.

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    Aws Client VPN Setup And Management

    Q: How do I setup AWS Client VPN?

    A: The IT administrator creates a Client VPN endpoint, associates a target network to that endpoint and sets up the access policies to allow end user connectivity. The IT administrator distributes the client VPN configuration file to the end users. End users will need to download an OpenVPN client and use the client VPN configuration file to create their VPN session.

    Q: What should an end user do to setup a connection?

    A: The end user should download an OpenVPN client to their device. Next, the user will import the AWS Client VPN configuration file to the OpenVPN client and initiate a VPN connection.

    Understanding Aws Direct Connect Vs Internet VPN

    We recently held a webinar with Adam Blackington from Amazon Web Service on increasing the value of data in motion. The point of the webinar was to illustrate that the connectivity you choose between your cloud providers, colocation data centers, and enterprise SaaS makes a difference in how much value you can derive from application and data workflows. As part of this webinar, we covered the different ways to connect to your Amazon VPCs and AWS services. We looked at the benefits of partner-hosted AWS Direct Connect connections. And our Director of Technical Marketing Keith Burns demonstrated a huge difference in Kafka throughput when using PacketFabric private connectivity vs VPN tunnels.

    So, in this blog post, beside recapping details of what we covered during the webinar, its a good opportunity to compare two common ways to get private network connections to and between virtual private clouds: Direct Connect vs public Internet VPNs.

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