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Connecting to a L2TP/IPSEC VPN with a Preshared Key using Windows

You need to connect to a L2TP/IPSEC VPN (could be a Cisco ASA, etc) from your Windows PC.

Solution

This can be done via the VPN connection properties in Windows. We’ll be using Windows 7 for our example.

  1. Click Start->Control Panel. Control Panel should be in Category View.
  2. Click Network and Internet.
  3. Click Network and Sharing Center.
  4. Click Set Up a New Connection or Network. The Set Up a Connection or Network window will appear.
  5. Click Connect to a Workplace and then click Next.
  6. Click Use my Internet Connection (VPN).
  7. For the Internet Address, enter the hostname or IP given to you by your network administrator. For Destination Name, use something logical such as “Office VPN’. Also, click on “Don’t Connect Now”.
  8. Click Next.
  9. For User Name and Password, use what was provided to you by your network administrator. This is often your Active Directory logon account.
  10. Click Create.
  11. Click Close.
We now need to modify this connection from the default of PPTP, which is relatively weak, to L2TP/IPSEC.
  1. In Network and Sharing Center, click Change Adapter Settings in the left of the window.
  2. Right-click your newly created VPN profile, which is Office VPN in our example.
  3. Click Properties.
  4. Click on the Security tab.
  5. For Type of VPN, choose Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol with IPSEC (L2TP/IPSEC).
  6. Click Advanced Settings.
  7. Click Use Preshared Key for Authentication and enter the preshared key given to you by your network administrator.
  8. Click Ok.
  9. Back in the Security tab, click Allow these Protocols and choose (PAP, CHAP, AND MS-CHAP v2)–this is an IPSEC protected channel.
  10. Click Ok.
Based on your corporate policies, the default routing of your computer will go through the VPN. To disable this,
  1. In Network and Sharing Center, click Change Adapter Settings in the left of the window.
  2. Right-click your newly created VPN profile, which is Office VPN in our example.
  3. Click Properties.
  4. Click on the Networking tab.
  5. Click on Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)
  6. Click Properties.
  7. Click Advanced.
  8. Deselect “Use default gateway on remote network”.
  9. Click Ok.
  10. Click Ok.

Okay, you are ready to connect using the Windows VPN client.

 

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