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Wireless Networks Thread, Recomendations for VPN at home in Technical; I want to be able to VPN back to my home network but I do not want to leave a ...
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    somabc's Avatar
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    Recomendations for VPN at home

    I want to be able to VPN back to my home network but I do not want to leave a Server on all the time.

    Do you think I should replace my ADSL router with one that allows VPN or purchase a small low power Linux PC and run VPN on that?
    I know I can use various remote desktop solutions but I would prefer full network access if possible.

    Any other suggestions?
    Last edited by somabc; 1st June 2009 at 02:37 PM.

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    If you want to VPN back to your home network, there must be a machine running to accept the incoming connection. That could run on Linux or Windows 2000/XP etc. I doubt you'd have to have Windows 2003 or 2008 running and connected 24/7.
    Last edited by Ignatius; 1st June 2009 at 02:41 PM.

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    somabc's Avatar
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    I want to avoid having any PC's running 24/7 if possible.

    PS Has anyone done any calculations on the cost of running a 500W PC 24/7?
    If its not too bad I might look into it.

    Edit: This is my back of the envelope calc.

    0.5kW * 24 hours = 12kW per day.
    12kW * 0.13 = 1.56 per day

    So 10.92 per week, 43.68 per month, 524.16 per year!
    Last edited by somabc; 1st June 2009 at 02:52 PM.

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    A router with it built-in will be more efficient, but less flexible. Unless you have specific requirements (hosting your own DNS zones as well, for example) I'd go with it. Just watch you don't get stung by having to use client software that requires a separate license (I'm looking at you, Netgear )

    Anyway, calculating cost is easy. Assuming you run at the full load of 500W, which just makes the numbers easier:

    Code:
    ( ((minutes at day rate * 60) / 1000) * day rate cost per KWh) + ((minutes at night rate * 60) / 1000) * night rate cost per KHh )
    But for easy reference, my fairly beefy machine runs throughout as a mailserver, and takes about 20/mo (the bill varies from 25 to 40 depending on the season). Of course, that's very subjective.

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Spend 100 get a VPN router. Will make it's money back within a year (assuming you would run your 500watt pc if you didn't get it).

    Google "m0n0wall", basically you can buy a cheap Geode (basically an embedded PCs). Then setup WOL on your machine or whatever. You'll be able to plug in a large (usb) hdd if you want a NAS\ftp server.

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    somabc's Avatar
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    I do have an old Dell XPS R450 currently running freenas, perhaps the PSU is lower there?
    PC Pro: Product Reviews: Dell Dimension XPS R450

    Can you combine the NAS & VPN because that would be ideal!

    Or perhaps its better to run just a general linux server on it such as Ubuntu?

    Would I need 2 NICs or is one alright?

    ClarkConnect - Server and Gateway - Linux Small Business Server SBS sounds promising although perhaps I would prefer to start from scratch for the 'learning experience'
    Last edited by somabc; 1st June 2009 at 03:13 PM.

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    A 500watt power supply in a pc doesn't mean it uses 500 watts of power. My sisters gaming pc with top spec graphics card, 3 hard drives and a load of other junk in it only uses a touch over 300 watts when in use, and just over 200 at idle, it has an 800 watt power supply in it. Would have to be quite a high spec pc / server to draw 500 watts constantly! Still that works out at over 200 odd quid a year.

    Steve

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    You'll generally pull around 0.5 - 2 amps for a machine. Most PSU nowadays are Green PSU, basically will only drawn what power is needed.

    Geode powered pull under 0.1amps, Atom are around 0.25 amps.

    Few linkys:
    LinITX.com - ALIX Firewalls
    Soekris Engineering

    If you want to go fancy get the SOEKRIS with a nice ADSL2 pci card (or usb). You'll need to be good with Linux\BSD tho. Basically it's a machine, so you can install SAMBA for your NAS, OpenVPN. Failing that go with monowall, I believe freenas has nicked some of the gui stuff.

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    plexer's Avatar
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    What are you going to connect to if none of your machines are running?

    Ben

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    somabc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    What are you going to connect to if none of your machines are running?

    Ben
    Various machines will be off and on as needed but I would rather not leave them on all the time. I am mainly looking to route all traffic encrypted via the VPN and occasional transferring of files.
    Last edited by somabc; 1st June 2009 at 04:01 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jinnantonnix View Post
    *Ahem*

    I've got a Linksys NSLU2 for sale.
    I was going to recommend a NSLU2 - they are incredibly flexible. I've got one running UnSlung linux and one with Debian Etch. I've had everything from torrentflux, openssh, VPN, itunes server etc running from one (as well as Samba for file sharing). What more could you want from something so tiny and that uses so little power.

    I've also had a router with built in ssh/vpn but that was after reflashing it with third party firmware (DD-WRT). This is a fantastic piece of kit and I keep meaning to dig mine out to replace the wireless functionality of my Sky router.

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