VPN Primer

Is there a good VPN primer on the net somewhere?

I own a store and have a Linksys WRT54GS router with 3 machines behind it, a server running XP Pro, and two registers running XP Home. I would like to be able to log in to the server from my home machine. It has XP Pro and is behind another WRT54GS.

It would be nice if there was a HowTo white paper out there that talked about how to get up and going, so I don't have to bother the group with a bunch of newbie questions.

I'm an experienced computer person and use a Contivity VPN client to connect in to my employers corporate LAN as I work from home.


----------- Don Payette Unisys Corporation I speak only for myself; not my employer Please reply in the newsgroup. Don't try sending e-mail.

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Don Payette
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I'm certainly no expert, but I suggest starting with Bob Cerelli's networking info at

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Look for the sections on setting up xp vpn server and client. After that, there always seems to be lots of other niggling issues that have to be worked out (and that's what cries out for a good white paper, though I don't know of one). For one thing, I think you want the local subnets on the two lans to be different (e.g., 192.168.1.xxx on one and 192.168.2.xxx on the other). For another, you have to setup the routers for pptp passthrough, but the official Linksys firmware has never worked reliably for me. Fortunately, there is third-party firmware for the wrt54g/gs that works better.

As I said, I'm far from being an expert with this, but I do have a reliably working vpn using a win2k pro machine as a vpn server behind a wrt54gs at home, and I can connect to it with my xp laptop from any internet connection while away from home. I flashed my 54gs with the free dd-wrt firmware (see

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and am using Cerelli's setup. (In contrast, I've never been able to get a befsr41 or a befvp41 to work--and the vp41 is itself supposed to be a vpn router!)

BTW, bear in mind that if you have the usual asynchronous consumer cable or dsl service, your vpn connection is essentially going to be throttled by the slowest link in the two-way process: the *uplink* speed of your cable/dsl service.

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