A Great VPN Solution That Combines Computer Backup For Windows Users

There are lots of different types of VPNs based on how they are used. Some VPNs like those from Citrix GoToMyPC create a VPN connection so you can safely access your home computer from anywhere in the world. Other VPNs like those from Kovurt and OpenVPN focus on privacy and circumvention so you can access the Internet safely and privately. And there is a third type of VPN usage: creating a true private network so you can exchange files, chats, and messages with friends.

In this third type of VPn usage, a fantastic piece of software is Gbridge. Here is how Gbridge describes itself:

Gbridge is a free software that lets you remotely control PCs, sync folders, share files, and chat securely and easily. An extension of Google’s gtalk service, Gbridge automatically forms a collaborative, encrypted VPN (Virtual Private Network) that connects your computers and your friends’ computers directly and securely with patented technology. Gbridge has many unique features.

Not only does Gbridge let you privately chat with friends, it is also a fantastic computer backup solution, as well as a normal VNC. That means you can use it to troubleshoot other computers or access them in the same way GoToMyPC does it.

It is a great way to transfer very large files between friends or colleagues, and Gbridge use Dynamic DNS.

A couple caveats:
1) Gbridge only works on PCs. So Mac lovers are out of luck.

2) You must use a Google account to access it. Gbridge is not owned or related to Google, but it does use Google’s gtalk service so you must login with a Gmail or Google Apps account. You may worry that Gbridge or Google will then have access to your info… Gbridge “promises” everything is encrypted and they have no access to anything you transmit.

You can get more info at http://www.gbridge.com


This news was originally syndicated from the news at VPN Instructions. We have permission to syndicate this article, and the original is © VPN Instructions.

A Great VPN Solution That Combines Computer Backup For Windows Users

There are lots of different types of VPNs based on how they are used. Some VPNs like those from Citrix GoToMyPC create a VPN connection so you can safely access your home computer from anywhere in the world. Other VPNs like those from Kovurt and OpenVPN focus on privacy and circumvention so you can access the Internet safely and privately. And there is a third type of VPN usage: creating a true private network so you can exchange files, chats, and messages with friends.

In this third type of VPn usage, a fantastic piece of software is Gbridge. Here is how Gbridge describes itself:

Gbridge is a free software that lets you remotely control PCs, sync folders, share files, and chat securely and easily. An extension of Google’s gtalk service, Gbridge automatically forms a collaborative, encrypted VPN (Virtual Private Network) that connects your computers and your friends’ computers directly and securely with patented technology. Gbridge has many unique features.

Not only does Gbridge let you privately chat with friends, it is also a fantastic computer backup solution, as well as a normal VNC. That means you can use it to troubleshoot other computers or access them in the same way GoToMyPC does it.

It is a great way to transfer very large files between friends or colleagues, and Gbridge use Dynamic DNS.

A couple caveats:
1) Gbridge only works on PCs. So Mac lovers are out of luck.

2) You must use a Google account to access it. Gbridge is not owned or related to Google, but it does use Google’s gtalk service so you must login with a Gmail or Google Apps account. You may worry that Gbridge or Google will then have access to your info… Gbridge “promises” everything is encrypted and they have no access to anything you transmit.

You can get more info at http://www.gbridge.com

Get more information about Internet security and privacy at VPN Instructions: VPN Instructions.

Adding Some Key Facts In WSJ.com’s China’s Internet ‘Wall’ Hits Business Article

VPNs are useful for creating a private connection online. Most users around the world use VPNs specifically for privacy. But a growing number of users in places like China and Iran also use VPNs for circumvention.

The Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.com has a decent article (China’s Internet ‘Wall’ Hits Business) related to VPN usage in China among businesses built around a recent American Chamber of Commerce in China press release. The article is written by Paul Mozur and Carlos Tejada. The article is pretty good but there are a few things that caught our eye that need more explanation:

1) The article states “it is illegal for foreign companies to operate a VPN in China without a local partner”. That is true, as Internet Service Providers must be primarily owned by local Chinese. But it skims over the subtleties about whether it is illegal to use a VPN in China, period. It is not illegal to use a VPN in China if the Virtual Private Network’s nodes and servers are outside of mainland China. The Shanghai-based lawyer we conferred with, along with our deep understanding of China’s Internet landscape, shows us that there are no laws on the books in China that prohibit any user in China from connecting to a VPN outside of mainland China.

2) The article states “the government has been closing ports used by VPNs, and that the company has maintained services by switching to new ports each time an old one is closed.” Yes, this is true and this began around October 20, 2012. However, according to the monitoring from VPN provider Kovurt.com based in Hong Kong, as of around November 27, 2012, new actions were taking place in China: not only were ports closed, but also highly encrypted packets started to be filtered. So even when using alternate ports, it was the more enhanced packets that were being captured for possible further analysis and/or blocking. In the VPN world, we call that “filtering”. The bottom line: even changing ports does not work in the end because all encrypted packets using OpenVPN are filtered. That means VPNs using the OpenVPN protocol do not work.

3) As an important addition to #2, we should note that not all VPN protocols are blocked. Only OpenVPN protocols are blocked. But PPTP and L2TP, which users can easily use from their laptops, desktops, or mobile devices, are not blocked in China. Why? Because they use traditional ports used by e-commerce sites. Is it possible to block PPTP and L2TP? Yes it is, but that means either a DNSBL is used or the entire Internet is shut down to SSL traffic. So people complain that VPNs do not work in China are only usually trying to use OpenVPN, which is only one of the triumvirate of useful VPN protocols and technologies. This article fails to mention that VPNs are used and running fine if OpenVPN is not relied upon. Providers like Astrill, Kovurt, and Witopia all provide their users a choice of OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP.

Let us know more about how you are using VPNs around the world and your experiences with VPNs in China.


This news was originally syndicated from the news at VPN Instructions. We have permission to syndicate this article, and the original is © VPN Instructions.

Is OpenVPN Dead?

With total filtering (i.e., block) of the OpenVPN protocol in recent weeks in places like China, many users are wondering if this is the end for OpenVPN. What started in late October 2012 with only filterings of certain ports of OpenVPN, was ratcheted up by the end of November 2012 with a seemingly total block of OpenVPN services throughout most of China. This has left users of OpenVPN paid systems at places like Witopia, Astrill, and StrongVPN a loss, frustrated, angry, and despondent.

So if OpenVPN has been so easy to block in a place like China, is this the end for the service? Probably not because other services like Kovurt have quickly filled the void by using OpenVPN and encrypting it in ways that do not readily allow future blocks of OpenVPN user accounts.

Companies like Kovurt use the same types of VPN protocols that Witopia, Astrill, and StrongVPN use, such as PPTP/L2TP/SSL VPN/OpenVPN, but they go a step further and create “digital envelopes” that create more trusted connections between users and the Virtual Private Network world. (You can see more information about VPN instructions and tutorials at VPNinstructions.com). This does slow down the usage for users a little, but that slow pace is balanced by broader privacy and better Internet access for users of services like Kovurt VPN.

According to Wikipedia, OpenVPN is “an open source software application that implements virtual private network (VPN) techniques for creating secure point-to-point or site-to-site connections in routed or bridged configurations and remote access facilities. It uses a custom security protocol that utilizes SSL/TLS for key exchange. It is capable of traversing network address translators (NATs) and firewalls. It was written by James Yonan and is published under the GNU General Public License (GPL).”

So nothing in that definition and use of OpenVPN should change much in the near-future. The only change now is more companies will be utilizing best practices to keep more users private and secure when using VPN services. OpenVPN is far from dead!


This news was originally syndicated from the news at VPN Instructions. We have permission to syndicate this article, and the original is © VPN Instructions.

What’s the difference between PPTP, L2TP, OpenVPN, and SOCKS when talking about VPNs?

Deciding on the type of “protocol” to use for your VPN is like choosing the best tasting ice cream: there are many choices, and some people prefer one choice over another.

For VPNs, the 3 main choices are PPTP, L2TP, and OpenVPN. We also include SOCKS, but that is not really a VPN protocol. Some people also use SSTP too, but that is not being used so much these days (yet!). Then you also hear of “IPSec”, but that is really a marketing brand used by Cisco and other companies and really refers to L2TP.

Did we confuse you yet?

Yes, it can be a little confusing. So we will only concentrate on the differences between PPTP, L2TP, OpenVPN, and SOCKS. There is a good comparison chart on Kovurt.com, but here is our own chart too:

 

VPN Protocols

PPTP

L2TP

SOCKS

OpenVPN

Ease of Setup Fast Fast Moderate Moderate
VPN Speed Fast Fast Moderate Moderate
Security Moderate Very Good Very Good Best
Stability Good Good Better Best
Suggested Systems iPhone, iPad, Mac, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac Mac, Ubuntu Mac, Windows 7

PPTP and L2TP do not require any software for you to install! So many people like to use them because you only need to enter your username and password once on your computer or phone, and in the future you can connect with a click of a button

OpenVPN is a little more cumbersome because you must download software first to use it. Then you must install the software and maintain the software when there are upgrades. OpenVPN is a little more stable, but most people agree that PPTP and L2TP are just so much easier to use. Plus, PPTP and L2TP can be used on iPads, iPhones, and Android mobile phones, but OpenVPN can not be used on those devices (unless you “crack” them).

So those are our thoughts on the differences. Please leave your comments below to let us know what you think.

How to setup OpenVPN on Mac OS X

For our instructions and tutorial, we are using the VPN services from Kovurt.com. You can use any service you like, but we prefer Kovurt.

After you confirmed your Kovurt subscription, we sent you an email. Inside that email you should see something like the following:

===============
Your VPN Username: username
Your VPN Password: password
===============

You can download opensource, free OpenVPN software for your Mac from Tunnelblick. We really like there software and it is always being updated with new versions to fix old bugs.

If you want to download Kovurt’s own VPN software for Mac, you should visit their site at Kovurt.com and get their service.

Whether you decide to use Tunnelblick’s software or Kovurt’s software, you should follow the instructions in the download to install the software. Installations should take you about 30 seconds and are very easy.

Please use the VPN Username and VPN Password to connect to the Kovurt VPN network. Once you are connected, you will have a greater level of privacy and security.

How to setup OpenVPN on Windows 7

For our instructions and tutorial, we are using the VPN services from Kovurt.com. You can use any service you like, but we prefer Kovurt.

If you would like to use the more stable OpenVPN protocol, you will need to first download Kovurt’s special OpenVPN software. Please click this link, register, and download the software.

Follow the instructions in the download to install the software. Installations should take you about 30 seconds and is very easy.

After you registered, we emailed you some brief instructions and they contained your VPN Username and VPN Password like this:

===============
Your VPN Username: username
Your VPN Password: password
===============

1. Choose “Save” in your browser
2. Now “Save” the file to your Desktop

3. After the download completes, choose “Open”.


4. Double-click the KovurtPC.exe file

5. Click “OK” to begin extracting and installing Kovurt

6. Click “Next” and follow the instrcutions to continue fully installing the software. You will see a few windows and confirm them to continue.

7. On your Desktop, double-click the OpenVPN GUI icon

8. Go to the bottom of your menu bar and click the red computer icon. A list of locations will open and you can choose one and click “Connect”.

9. Enter your VPN Username and VPN Password. We emailed these to you, so please check your email first!

10. You will see a list of commands and then you will be connected when the red computer icon becomes a green computer icon.

How to setup OpenVPN on Windows Vista

For our instructions and tutorial, we are using the VPN services from Kovurt.com. You can use any service you like, but we prefer Kovurt.

If you would like to use the more stable OpenVPN protocol, you will need to first download Kovurt’s special OpenVPN software. Please click this link, register, and download the software.

Follow the instructions in the download to install the software. Installations should take you about 30 seconds and is very easy.

After you registered, we emailed you some brief instructions and they contained your VPN Username and VPN Password like this:

===============
Your VPN Username: username
Your VPN Password: password
===============

1. Choose “Save” in your browser
2. Now “Save” the file to your Desktop

3. After the download completes, choose “Open”.


4. Double-click the KovurtPC.exe file

5. Click “OK” to begin extracting and installing Kovurt

6. Click “Next” and follow the instrcutions to continue fully installing the software. You will see a few windows and confirm them to continue.

7. On your Desktop, double-click the OpenVPN GUI icon

8. Go to the bottom of your menu bar and click the red computer icon. A list of locations will open and you can choose one and click “Connect”.

9. Enter your VPN Username and VPN Password. We emailed these to you, so please check your email first!

10. You will see a list of commands and then you will be connected when the red computer icon becomes a green computer icon.