One of the most popular and well-received implementations of VPN technology, OpenVPN is an open source solution for creating a Virtual Private Network (VPN). OpenVPN uses a customized protocol to achieve secure connectivity, using SSL (Secure Socket Layer) in the process for security. Many VPN providers offer OpenVPN as a preferred protocol, and the reasons for this are plentiful. Let’s take a look at what the pros and cons of OpenVPN exactly are to find out.
With security features such as peer authentication using pre-shared keys, certificates and other usual forms of authentication, strong encryption standards using the OpenSSL Library, and HMAC packet authentication, OpenVPN is ideal for people who want to keep their networks safe and secure from prying eyes and hackers. Also, OpenVPN runs in the user space and can run without root privileges, making it quite safe and robust to use.
When OpenVPN goes down, the network is brought to a pause to allow for repair or reconfiguration, thereby ensuring that no data loss or corruption or miscommunication happens. This also acts as an additional layer of security.
Great Worldwide Community Support
Being an open source solution, OpenVPN enjoys the support and community focus that comes with almost every software licensed under the GNU GPL. Being open source, OpenVPN is free for modification, as the source code is available.
While most proxy servers around the world support OpenVPN, there are some that do not, and if the user happens to be unfortunate enough to be attempting to connect through one of these, problems are inevitable. This too can be resolved, however, by simply switching to a supportive proxy solution.
Due to many overheads involved in running OpenVPN, the latencies can be high depending on the situation, location of access and the distance being covered. The latency also has another reason – all the encryption and decryption processes that occur on OpenVPN occur in the user space. However, this issue can be resolved by using fairly capable machines on either ends of the VPN.
Setting up the OpenVPN network can be a daunting task for beginners. With so many options and configurable aspects, OpenVPN can be difficult to work with and be disastrous if it gets into the hands of the uninitiated.
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