OpenVPN Access Server Overview

OpenVPN Access Server is the #7 ranked solution in our list of top Enterprise Infrastructure VPN tools. It is most often compared to Fortinet FortiClient: OpenVPN Access Server vs Fortinet FortiClient

What is OpenVPN Access Server?

OpenVPN is an open-source software application that implements virtual private network techniques for creating secure point-to-point or site-to-site connections in routed or bridged configurations and remote access facilities.

OpenVPN Access Server is also known as OpenVPN.

Buyer's Guide

Download the Enterprise Infrastructure VPN Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: June 2021

OpenVPN Access Server Customers

Verizon, Amazon, Disney, HP, Microsoft, IBM, Samsung

OpenVPN Access Server Video

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TH
Infrastructure Administrator at a financial services firm with 51-200 employees
Real User
Has the easiest UX for end-users and greatest interoperability with all operating systems we used

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case was to give mobile knowledge workers a secure connection across the Internet to our LAN, whether by laptop, mobile tablet or smart phone.

Pros and Cons

  • "Provided the easiest UX for our end-users and had the greatest interoperability with all the operating systems we used, including but not limited to: iOS, Android, OS X, Windows, and Linux."
  • "The upgrade path from older versions was more difficult than we wanted to tackle, so we ran an older version of the software for longer than I wanted. Patching, updating, and migrating to newer versions was a problem for us. That said, we were on a rather old version that I inherited yet it worked rock solid."

What other advice do I have?

We did not use this product on AWS. We hosted the server on our network. My advice would be, if OpenVPN fits your environment and needs, it’s a great solution. Do it.
it_user854109
DevOps Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
Encrypted connections mean our security is much improved

How has it helped my organization?

Encrypted connections are, in all situations, better than unencrypted. So, security is much better with OpenVPN.

What is most valuable?

The ability to run in almost any conditions, and the flexibility that comes with that.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues with stability, at least not recently.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues with scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

We didn't use any paid support. This software is fairly industry-standard and you can find all kinds of help in the online community.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We switched from IPSec and…
Find out what your peers are saying about OpenVPN, Fortinet, Palo Alto Networks and others in Enterprise Infrastructure VPN. Updated: June 2021.
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it_user847161
Software Engineer II at a tech vendor with 201-500 employees
Real User
Compatible with almost any Linux system, and easy to write scripts and generate keys

What is our primary use case?

Interoffice connections. We had offices in India and the US. To connect both of them to the same environment, we were using OpenVPN for that. It was so we could maintain a file store, exchange files and documents securely through our own proprietary mechanism, instead of having to rely on Dropbox and the like.

Pros and Cons

  • "The compatibility with almost any Linux operating system, and how easy it is to write scripts and generate keys for people to use and log in. I found it easy to deploy quickly."
  • "If someone's key is not working, or if we had to remove someone's permission from it, or maybe an employee left the company and we had to take their key out, that seemed a little bit more complicated than it had to be."
  • "I think right now the GUI part of it is locked out behind the pay wall. It could use something that gives it a very basic, minimal, graphic interface for logging in, for the community version. That would probably be a good step forward."
  • "If we had to create something for someone who was not necessarily tech savvy, I had to set that up on their computer, I had to write "read me's" and other things so that they could install their client and then connect to the VPN by themselves. So it was hard to set up for people who are not tech savvy."

What other advice do I have?

OpenVPN is a good option for kick-starting any kind of interoperability between offices. It doesn't have a huge setup time, so it's a quick way to start experimenting with how the organization would work with its VPN requirements. Even if your requirements are very small, it's a very convenient to start off with this solution. I rate it at eight out of 10 because it gives value for what it provides. You need technical know-how to get started on it, but it is also very swift. It has all the right features but it's technically challenging if you're not tech savvy. Providing clients with keys is…
MB
Senior System Engineer
Real User
Allows us to see and use the new Citrix server as a local server within the company

What is our primary use case?

This was a test bed in which to use a virtualized Citrix server to be connected with the downtown Tacoma site. We needed that to be able to not only access the local network over there, but also to use thin clients there to virtualize the work stations on our test location.

Pros and Cons

  • "A valuable feature for us is its ability to see the new Citrix server as a local server within the company. And it allows us to test abroad."
  • "I would like to see a simpler interface, so that we can make the connection between the local network using the LAN IP."
  • "I would be more happy with the idea of licensing to have a reduced price with longer, grouped, annual fees. We have a lot of other software that does the same thing. It's a little higher price if you're going with a shorter stint, but there's a reduction in price for three- and five-year contracts."

What other advice do I have?

Do your homework, and make sure that your test site where you're going to be setting this up has a good, solid connection with your ISP. That was the issue we ran into. We actually had to get our ISP out here to fix the modem that we were having issues with.
BradBrooks
QA Engineer/Software Developer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Allows us to securely do remote product updates, as well as local subnet blocking

What is our primary use case?

We have multiple clients on our VPN, and we do logon for support, backup, and product updates.

Pros and Cons

  • "It can securely do remote product updates... just as if it was on our LAN."
  • "You can do local subnet blocking."
  • "They may have this already, but it would be nice to be able to get more notifications if a site drops unexpectedly."
  • "It would be nice with all these features, if they could send some examples of each one; just small sample scripts to look at and say, "Oh okay, I could expand on this." That would help us a lot."

What other advice do I have?

If you will be creating several client configurations, create a script or some kind of automation for the steps of calling into the template where you can plug in parameters such as the key names and the actual subnet of the address that will be used. Then, in part of the script, do all the packaging of it because it will prevent errors and typos and save lots of time too. Also, expand on the number of connections right away, and have some reset scripts for each phase, if it goes down, to be able to restart it. It can be difficult to connect to a remote machine if you've lost your connection…
XavierGarcia
Cofounder/CTO and Principal Devops at a tech vendor
Real User
Provides privacy and cryptography for my network communication

Pros and Cons

  • "Provides privacy and cryptography for my network communication."
  • "I would like to see a GUI or Web UI to manage users. Today these features are in the Pro Edition or are done by scripts."

What other advice do I have?

I use it as server and client in AWS. The first reason is to provide a kind of crypted VLAN. No real advice to give, except to be careful with the traffic in/out on extensive usage. I rate it 10 out of 10. Simple to install and maintain, easy to find documentation or help in Google. Try it. It's really fast to PoC and validate this solution.
MS
Founder
Real User
Highly configurable, you can create your own custom client installer

How has it helped my organization?

It allows our employees to work remotely across Mac, Windows, and Linux platforms.

What is most valuable?

Highly configurable. You can create your own custom client installer and can rebrand the server-side program.

What needs improvement?

Better GUI. Also, we switched more to Cisco AnyConnect due to the Win 10 stability issues.

For how long have I used the solution?

Three to five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There were some issues when Windows 10 initially came out. However, after some OpenVPN and Windows 10 patches, it stabilized.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues with scalability.

How is customer service and technical support?

I have never used their technical…
Mark Engstrom
Python Developer at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
Real User
Open source and affordable, but configuration wizard would be helpful

What is our primary use case?

It was required for a secure network connection.

What is most valuable?

It is open source and therefore affordable for small projects.

What needs improvement?

It could include a configuration wizard so that users who do not follow instructions well can configure a connection.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not scaled service yet.

How are customer service and technical support?

We did not use support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

This was our first solution.

How was the initial setup?

It was fine, as long as you followed…
JW
Senior Linux System Administrator at a media company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Two-factor authentication allows us to not force frequent password changes

Pros and Cons

  • "​It allows us to give access to our office network in a safe and secure way to users, no matter which computing platform they use. ​"
  • "Two-factor authentication allows us to not force frequent password changes."
  • "​There was one annoying feature where we had to disable and enable the user. I cannot remember what it was exactly, but I think it was for a password lockout. It would be nice if there was a checkbox, or something, in the web interface to allow you to unlock a user whose password was locked."

What other advice do I have?

It is good stuff.
it_user806457
Senior DevOps Engineer at a tech vendor with 10,001+ employees
Vendor
Its best features include great documentation, community support, and easy to manage

What is our primary use case?

I have used this solution for five years (2008-2013) as the company's main business solution, and then, for a year (2017), as a custom solution for secure AWS access. I was using it on AWS to create secure access to internal VPC services. It is a lightweight, easy to setup solution.

How has it helped my organization?

Several years ago, I was working on a Consumer VPN service provider, and OpenVPN was a great base to provide such services. It is much easier to scale and troubleshoot compared to regular Windows-based VPN solutions or PPTP daemon.

What is most valuable?

Easy to setup and manage Great documentation Community support

What needs improvement?

At the moment, I am not working too closely with the product.

For how long have I used the

Buyer's Guide
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