What are the VPN Protocols?


As we all are aware of the fact that VPN makes use of various encryption protocols to make sure that the connection is secured between the end user and the VPN server. Choosing the best VPN protocol to change IP address is essential, so we have listed a list of most commonly supported encryption protocols used by VPN providers.

  • PPTP – Point to Point Tunnel Protocol – It is an old, lightweight VPN protocol which is famous, but doesn’t provide much security. It is perfect for streaming and basic VPN requirements, but not for torrenting.
  • L2TP / IPSec – Layer 2 Tunnel Protocol and IP Security – It is a more evolved form of PPTP, offering better security and encryption at the slight expense of speed.
  • SSTP – Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol – It is a flexible SSL based encryption by Microsoft. It is a better alternative to L2TP / IPSec but not as good as OpenVPN.
  • OpenVPN – It is a newer open source VPN protocol that provides great security, compatibility abd flexibility. It is supported by a router firmware like DD-WRT, Tomato and many others.

  • More servers signify better VPN user distribution. This transforms the faster servers and fewer users on each VPN server.
  • Higher service availability. If any one of the server goes down, you will still have the many others to connect with; hence, limiting the impact on your VPN service.
  • Ability to access geo restricted content for every country that possesses a VPN server available just for you to connect with.
  • Ability to connect to a VPN server that is placed closer to the source you are attempting to access. Hence, offering better download and / or upload speeds.

Users should know that not all encryption protocols provide the same security and performance level. For instance, PPTP doesn’t really encrypt the information but just encapsulates the user’s data. Despite this flaw, it is still widely used today because not many people are aware of the security it provides and has set a base in the market for quite long. Also, it is still supported by newer VPN devices and servers.

On the other hand, L2TP/IPSec is a slower protocol meaning that it has more overhead.

SSTP is a Microsoft proprietory protocol found on all Windows OS after Windows Vista Service Pack 1. It is preferred more than PPTP and L2TP as it is permeable via most firewalls without a problem. Whereas, PPTP and L2TP/IPsec won’t be able to pass via a firewall as they use rare TCP/UDP ports which are blocked by corporate or guest networks.

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