You can think of OpenVPN as a type of VPN.
It is not.
So what is OpenVPN? How does it work? And why should you care?
We have all the answers.
What is VPN?
A VPN is a tool that allows you to browse the Internet with a degree of anonymity. It encrypts your internet traffic data and routes it to a remote server, changing your IP address in the process.
Many VPN providers perform DNS queries on their network. They don’t rely on hardware controlled by your ISP, and they address the main vulnerabilities that nosy people like to exploit.
Any standard VPN service worth buying will not leak your IP address and DNS queries. But some solutions go further by offering advanced security features like kill switch and dual VPN.
Whether a VPN has standard functionality or has all the bells and whistles, neither makes sense without a solid protocol.
What are VPN protocols?
Protocols, like an OpenVPN protocol, are collections of processes that determine how VPN clients should package data.
They also tell VPNs how to establish encrypted tunnels to securely move Internet traffic through a private network of servers.
Because developers design tunneling protocols differently, each one transmits data in its own way. This is why they tend to serve different purposes even if they have the same job description.
Some VPN protocols are designed for speed, but cannot be trusted on the security front. The point-to-point tunneling protocol is a great example.
Stability is the business card of others. Internet Key Exchange v2 is a good example.
But the most popular ones are highly configurable for a variety of uses – you can make them secure and lightweight as needed. In terms of versatility, the first thing that comes to mind is the OpenVPN protocols.
The most common tunneling protocols are open source. They are transparent and anyone who can analyze your code can look for any vulnerabilities. A good example is a secret backdoor, which could compromise the integrity of a VPN.
Despite the availability of open source protocols, some vendors choose to develop one from scratch or based on proven options.
These VPN service providers feel that the standard VPN protocols are not good enough to provide the level of performance that they expect to provide.
For example, Hotspot Shield relies solely on its Catapult Hydra property. It supported OpenVPN and Internet Protocol Security (IPSec), but AnchorFree Inc. (its developer) felt that both protocols had unacceptable latency issues.
Over time, new tunneling protocols arrive to make a qualitative leap. At the moment, WireGuard is the talk of the town.
What is OpenVPN?
At this point, we have already mentioned OpenVPN a couple of times. So what is OpenVPN actually?
OpenVPN is the most popular VPN protocol today. It was developed by a company of the same name. OpenVPN Inc offers its own line of OpenVPN technologies and services, including:
- connect client
- Login to the server
- Private tunnel.
Is OpenVPN encrypted?
Combine the encryption, authentication, and certification capabilities of the OpenSSL library with Transport Layer Security for private key exchange.
Supports the strongest cryptographic algorithms ever invented, including industry-standard 256-bit AES encryption, to securely transmit data
With the versatility of OpenVPN encryption, you can choose between certificate-centric public-key encryption or conventional static-key-based encryption.
Is OpenVPN safe?
Despite WireGuard’s impressive design, OpenVPN is still the most secure VPN protocol out there. It has been around longer, which inspires confidence.
Also, OpenVPN applications are an open book. Any cybersecurity expert and software developer could look under the hood and look for bugs.
This protocol has a low number of known vulnerabilities. And the new ones don’t go unnoticed for long due to their open source nature.
How well does OpenVPN bypass firewalls?
How good is OpenVPN?
Break geographical restrictions.
OpenVPN sends encrypted data on Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) port 443, successfully unlocking many geo-restrictions. But you can also tunnel OpenVPN through a User Datagram Protocol (UDP) port.
TCP has multiple verification checks, thus ensuring the reliability of the OpenVPN connection. But UDP promises a faster connection speed than OpenVPN, since it sends data without checking if it actually reaches the receiving computer.
Is it easy to configure OpenVPN?
The OpenVPN protocol can be difficult to configure manually.
Its complexity, its only indisputable drawback, can make you dizzy. Fortunately, the OpenVPN TCP and UDP protocols are usually preconfigured in most personal VPN apps.
By the way, almost all the VPNs we tested support OpenVPN. And you can easily switch from TCP to UDP as you like.
Aside from Hotspot Shield, Hola VPN was the only other provider we found that didn’t use OpenVPN.
However, some of the most popular VPN services like PIA, Surfshark, NordVPN, and ExpressVPN do support it.
OpenVPN is one of the best full-featured VPN protocols out there. Don’t expect to find any compatibility issues with it. Without a doubt, OpenVPN technologies are safe.
It’s no longer the pinnacle of most things with the arrival of WireGuard. But OpenVPN is still a decent option for streaming, torrenting, and private web browsing.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS.
What is OpenVPN and how does it work?
OpenVPN is a very versatile VPN protocol designed to constantly bypass firewalls. A secure OpenVPN tunnel can go through a TCP or UDP port, balancing connection reliability and speed. And it also uses TLS for dynamic key exchange. Also, it depends on the OpenSSL cryptographic library. That’s why today it’s up to date with all trusted encryption, authentication, and certification standards.
What is the difference between VPN and OpenVPN?
A VPN is an internet privacy solution that can hide your prying web traffic and hide your real IP address.
OpenVPN is one of many protocols that tells VPNs how to securely pack and send data.
Is OpenVPN free or not?
Yes, you can manually configure OpenVPN for free, but your connections may be limited. However, you can use a VPN service with a preconfigured OpenVPN protocol to avoid the hassle of fumbling around with client software. So free VPNs are not the most secure instead, choose a payment service with a money-back guarantee. That way, you can request a refund if you don’t keep your promise. What is OpenVPN most useful for? Read this article from above.
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