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Building a VPN in Windows 10


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A virtual private network (VPN) is one of the most popular methods to access files and resources, such as applications, intranet websites, and printers using an encrypted connection from a remote location and through the internet.

Often times companies use VPN to extend their private network to let employees access resources through a public network as if they were directly connected into the company’s network.

Windows 10 like other versions of the operating system has a feature called “Incoming Connection” that enables you to set up a VPN server to connect remotely to your home network to access your computer’s files and peripherals, and even other computers in the network.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to set up a VPN server on your Windows 10 computer without the need of extra software on the Home or Pro version of the operating system.

How to find your IP address information

Before diving into the instructions, the first thing you need to know is your public IP address that has been assigned to you by your Internet Service Provider (ISP). You will need this information in order to contact your VPN server remotely.

To know your current public IP address, open your web browser, and using any search engine, do a search for “What’s my IP”, and your information should be listed in the first result.

If you’re setting up Incoming Connection in your home computer, you probably have a dynamic public IP address, which can change at any time. If this is the case, you’ll need to configure DDNS (Dynamic Domain Name System) in your router to avoid having to reconfigure the VPN setup every time your public IP address changes.

Here are the instructions that will help you setup DDNS on your router. Remember that you can visit your router’s manufacturer website for more assistance to configure DDNS.

How to set up port forwarding on your router

To be able to connect through a public network, such as the internet, to your home VPN server, you’ll need to forward port 1723 (Point to Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP)) to allow VPN connections.

Here are the instructions that will help you set up port forwarding on your router. Remember 

that you can visit your router’s manufacturer website for more assistance to configure Port Forwarding. 

How to set up a VPN server on Windows 10

Once you have set up DDNS to use a domain name instead of a complicated IP address, and you forwarded port 1723, now you are ready to set up a VPN server in your Windows 10 PC:

1. Open Control Panel
2. Click on Network and Sharing Center
3. Using the left pane, click the Change adapter settings link.

4.On 'Network Connections,' open the File menu pressing the Alt key, and select the 'New Incoming Connection' Option.

5. Check the users you want to VPN access to your computer, and click the Next button.

Alternatively, you can click the 'Add someone' button to create a new VPN user:

6. Check the 'Through the Internet' option.
7. Click the Next button.
8. In the networking software page, select Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) option.
9. Click the Properties button.
10. Check the Allow callers to access my local area network option.
11.Under “IP address assignment,” click Specify IP addresses, and specify the number of clients allowed to access using a VPN connection. (You will do this by specifying an IP address range, and it’s recommended that you use high-order range of IP addresses to help avoid conflicts in the network with the IPs distributed by your router.)incoming-ip-properties-windows-10.jpg
12.Click the OK button.
13. Click the Allow access button.
14. Click the Close button to complete setting up the VPN Server.


How to allow VPN connections through the firewall

While configuring the Incoming Connection feature on Windows 10 should automatically open the necessary Windows Firewall ports, you want to make sure the firewall is properly configured:

1. Open Start
2. Search for Allow an app through Windows Firewall, and click the top result to open the control panel.
3. Click the Change Settings button.
4. Scroll down and make sure Routing and Remote Access is allowed on Private and Public.

5. Click the OK button.

How to set up a VPN connection on Windows 10

After completing setting up the Windows 10 as a VPN server, you’ll need to configure the devices that will be accessing your local network remotely. You can set up any device, including your desktop, laptop, tablet, and even phone (eg Android and iPhone).

Once you have a VPN to connect to, you need to adjust the following settings for the machines joining the VPN.

1. Open Control Panel
2. Click on Network & Internet
3. Click on Network and Sharing Center.
4. On the left pane, click the Change adaptor settings link.
5. Right click the VPN adapter and select Properties.
6. In the General tab, make sure you're using the correct domain you created while configuring DDNS - or at least that you're using the correct public IP address.
7. Click on the Security tab.
8. Under 'Type of VPN,' Select the Point to Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) option.
9. Under 'Data encryption' select the Maximum strength encryption (disconnect if server declines) option.vpn-connection-security-windows-10.jpg

10. Click the OK Button
11. Click on the Networking tab.
12. Uncheck the Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) option.
13. Check the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) option.
14. Select the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) option.
15. Click the Properties button.


16. Click the Advanced button.

17. Clear the Use default gateway on remote network option.
18. Click the OK button.
19. Click the OK button again.
20. Click the OK button yet again.
21. Open Settings
22. Click on Network & Internet
23. Click on VPN
24. Select the VPN Connection option and click the Connect button.

While there are many solutions to allow users to connect remotely to a private network using a VPN connection, you can set up your own server with the tools built within Windows 10 without the need of extra software.

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