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How To Setup L2TP VPN On Windows 7

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

The L2TP protocol is a security protocol used to implement virtual private networks (VPNs). As a VPN protocol, L2TP offers a dual advantage; it offers better compatibility than the OpenVPN protocol and at the same time it is considered more secure than the PPTP protocol. Many popular operating systems like Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android come bundled with a built-in L2TP client. In this article, you will learn how to setup L2TP/IPSec VPN on a Windows 7 machine.

How To Manually Configure L2TP/IPSec VPN on Windows 7

Before you setup the VPN, it is advisable to download and install the latest updates for Windows 7. To download Windows updates, click on the Start button and then on the Windows Update option. Depending on the size of the update file, it could take few minutes to download and install the latest updates. Once the update is complete, restart your PC and follow the steps below to setup the VPN:

1) Open the Control Panel by clicking on Start menu and then on Control Panel option. In the Control Panel window, click on “View Network Status and Task” option available under “Network and Internet” section. [Refer to images Screenshot 1 and Screenshot 1a]

2) In the next screen, click on “Set up a connection or network” option. [Refer to image Screenshot 2]

3) In the “Choose a Connection option” window, select “Connect to a workplace” option and then click on the Next button. [Refer to image Screenshot 3]

4) In the next window, you need to define how the VPN service should connect to the internet. Click on “Use my Internet Connection” in this window. [Refer to image Screenshot 4]

5) Next, you need to input the VPN server details. Type the IP address or the URL of the VPN server in the Internet Address textbox. You can find the servers details from the welcome email or through the server list section of the VPN provider’s website. In case your VPN service provider offers multiple server locations, make sure to type the server URL that you are interested in using.

As well as providing server details, you also need to provide a name for the connection. Choose an easy to remember connection name so that you can connect to the service quickly. Select “Allow other people to use this connection” option if required and then click on the Next button. [Refer to image Screenshot 5]

6) In the next window, you need to provide you login credentials. Type the username and password provided by your VPN provider in the appropriate input boxes. You may also choose “Remember the password” option if you don’t want to type the password again and again. Click on Create button to finish the setup process. [Refer to image Screenshot 6]

7) After the connection is successfully created, you will see the message “The connection is ready to use”. Click on the Close button for now as we still need to input L2TP/IPSec settings. [Refer to image Screenshot 7]

8) Click on Start->Control Panel->Network and Internet->Network Connections to see the list of existing network and VPN connections. Right click on the name of the VPN connection that you just created and then select Properties option. [Refer to image Screenshot 8]

9) In the Options tab, deselect the checkbox next to “Include Windows logon domain”. [Refer to image Screenshot 9]

10) In the Security tab, choose “Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol with IPSec” option in the “Type of VPN” dropdown box. Select a data encryption level as well as CHAP and MS-CHAP settings as specified by your VPN provider. [Refer to image Screenshot 10]

11) Click on Advanced Settings button to specify IPSec key. Click on “Use preshared key for authentication” and then enter the key value provided by your VPN company. Click on OK button. [Refer to image Screenshot 11]

12) From the Networking tab, deselect “File and Printer Sharing” and “Internet Protocol Version 6” options (in case your VPN provider does not support IPV6 protocol). Click on OK button to apply the setting changes. [Refer to image Screenshot 12]

13) To connect to the service, click on Start->Control Panel->Network and Internet->Network Connections and then on the name of the VPN connection. Click on “Save this username and password” option if required and then click on the Connect button. In the next screen, click on “Public Network” option from the list of available location options. As soon as your username and password is verified, you will see the message “You are connected”. When you want to disconnect from the service, click on Start->Control Panel->Network and Internet->Network Connections again and then click on Disconnect option next to your VPN connection name. [Refer to images Screenshot 13, Screenshot 13a, Screenshot 13b, Screenshot 13c and Screenshot 13D]

July 11, 2013

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