What is OpenVPN and how it works?

OpenVPN is one of the most popular and widely used VPN software solutions. Its popularity is due to its strong features, ease of use and extensive support. OpenVPN is Open Source software which means that everyone can freely use it and modify it as needed. OpenVPN can be used for various connectivity needs but its especially popular for anonymous and private access to Internet.

OpenVPN works in client – server mode. This means that there is an OpenVPN server which is connected to the Internet. OpenVPN clients connect to the server and from there they have full access to Internet. Once connected to the server, the client uses the server to terminate all of its Internet traffic. This means that the client is seen as the server, i.e. the client assumes the physical location and administrative contacts of the server. Thus all the privacy of the OpenVPN client is protected.

How OpenVPN works

How OpenVPN works

In order to start using OpenVPN you need first an OpenVPN server to which to connect to. You could install an OpenVPN server by yourself but this requires some technical knowledge and it lacks many of the privacy features provided by leading VPN service providers. That’s why it’s recommended to use a proven service provider such as VPNTunnel.com.

How to choose OpenVPN provider

While there are many service providers, the benefits of using VPNTunnel.com are:

  • More than 25 physical locations all over North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia: Argentina, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Panama, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, USA. This ensures that you will be able to connect from and to virtually everywhere in the world. Thus no site will be blocking you any longer based on your geographical location and the latter remains always undisclosed. No other OpenVPN service provider offers so many locations at the bandwidth and price of VPNTunnel.com.
  • Extensive support for a wide array of hardware. Virtually you can use any piece of hardware, including PCs, laptops and mobile devices, which supports OpenVPN.
  • Strong privacy protection. VPNTunnel.com is government safe and no traffic data or logs are saved. This means that no one will be able to find any personal details of the users. This unmatched level of protection is unique to VPNTunnel.com and no other company is so dedicated.
  • Strong encryption and security protection. Thanks to the strong, enterprise-grade encryption (BF-CBC) provided by VPNTunnel.com your data traffic cannot be intercepted by third parties. This makes it perfectly safe to use any network from public WiFis to monitored networks in repressed countries.

The above key benefits of VPNTunnel.com make it the best choice for OpenVPN service provider at an affordable price with flexible billing cycles.

How to use OpenVPN

Once you have subscribed to an OpenVPN provider you can proceed with the client setup. With VPNTunnel.com the client setup is very easy and straightforward. Here is how to use it in different platforms:

For Windows download the client from the official OpenVPN download page. Make sure to choose the correct version corresponding to your Windows(XP, Vista, 7 or later) and its architecture (32bit or 64bit).

Once you download the software install it like any other software. It’s safe to leave all options to their default values during the installation. After that obtain the OpenVPN config file. For each location you should be able to download a different file with the .ovpn extension. This is a regular text file which you can open with any text editor such as Notepad and observe the following important parameters:

  • auth-user-pass – the authentication mechanism includes an user and password which you must have in order to connect.
  • remote example.org 443 – this is the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of the remote server (example.org) and the destination port (443). 443 is the standard https port which is usually allowed even in strict corporate and government firewalls. Thus if your OpenVPN provider offers the service on such a standard port, like VPNTunnel.com does, you should be able to connect from almost anywhere.
  • certificate – the certificate needed to establish the secure connection with the remote server. This certificate is found inside the tags tags.

Once you have the needed .ovpn configuration file the easiest way to connect to the remote server is by clicking the right mouse button on the file and choosing “Start OpenVPN on this config file” option. Then a new prompt window will appear and you will be asked for your username and password. If your logins are correct you will be connected to the OpenVPN server and you can start browsing anonymously and safely.

This is how easy it is to establish an OpenVPN connection in Windows. In Linux and Mac the process is similar. You need again the OpenVPN client installed. For Linux the client can be found in most popular distribution repositories so the installation can be done with the native installer. For example, in Debian / Ubuntu you can install it with the command apt-get install openvpn. In Mac you need a third party software such as Tunnelblick.

After the installation you should be able to connect from a Shell terminal and using the OpenVPN binary in combination with the config file without any arguments. For example: /usr/sbin/openvpn VPNTunnel.ovpn. You will be asked for the user / password to complete the process of connecting to the remote OpenVPN server.

This is how simple and straight forward it is to use OpenVPN and protect your identity and privacy. Just don’t forget the importance of choosing a trusted OpenVPN provider, such as VPNTunnel.com, because the technology itself is not enough to protect you without the proper settings.