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VPN ideas for a very small office linked to a small-medium sized office.

Posted on 2005-04-07
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Last Modified: 2010-03-18
 I work in IT at a manufacturing company, and we have a corporate office which is located several miles from our manufacturing plant.  Both locations have offices, though the plant only has 3 computers.  The corporate office has 10-15 computers.  This is the current setup:

Corporate Office:
Windows 2000 Domain, domain name Corporate.ClarionBathware.Local
Uplink is a frac T1 (8 pairs)
All domain clients running Windows xp, with the exception of one linux box used as an IDS.

[ALL OFFICE COMPUTERS] <--> [SWITCH] <----> [HUB]  <--> [LINKSYS CABLE/DSL ROUTER] <--> [T1]
                                                      |                  /    \
                                      [DOMAIN SERVER]  [IDS]    [WIRELESS ACCESS POINT]
Manufacturing:
Windows 2000 Domain, domain name Corporate.ClarionBathware.Local (same domain name, so that laptop users could traverse between facilities and make moving between domain servers seem transparent)
Uplink is a dialup 56k modem, moving towards a speedier wifi solution, no other cost effective internet service in the area.
All domain clients running Windows xp.

[ALL OFFICE COMPUTERS] <--> [SWITCH] <--->[LINKSYS WIRELESS CABLE/DSL ROUTER]
                                                      |                                       |
                                       [DOMAIN SERVER]             [Linux box serving as dial-up router (freesco)]
                                                               

Neither of the linksys routers are models offering SoHo VPN capabilities, and we are aggressively seeking a cost-effective VPN solution.  The VPN Solution would have to envolve file/printer sharing between the two offices, and hopefully would allow
for creating ODBC (TCP) connections as well.  My personal knowledge lends more to programming than it does towards network design, and I was hoping somebody would be willing to post various ways to implement a VPN, as well as the approximated costs envolved in each method.  Thank you.
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Question by:WKalata
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ckratsch earned 1500 total points
ID: 13729280
So ... you have two domains both with the same name?  Or one domain that doesn't replicate between DCs?  If the former, and you intend to connect these two networks together via a VPN tunnel, you're going to have no end of problems unless you migrate all the AD info from one domain to the other, take the "migration source" domain down and add a remote DC to the "migration destination" domain at the other site.  Considering that the plant only has three computers, you could conceivably have them authenticate over the yet-to-be-built VPN without any consequences, provided the connection is stable enough.

I don't know cost off the top of my head, but I know that SonicWall routers have a simple site-to-site VPN config wizard.  The VPN tunnel would exist between the two SonicWall devices, invisible to clients behind either one.
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by:gjohnson99
ID: 13729855
Why not use windows vpn it free with windows 2000 ,client are all ready installed on xp If you have your domain up and running - with current patchs - it like a 30 min. install.  


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by:WKalata
ID: 13735967
Are there any transparent solutions less expensive than SonicWall's? Most of those were claiming 3000-6000 ipsec tunnels, but with three computers, I'm guessing even 50-100 would be overkill.
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:ckratsch
ID: 13736146
The Sonicwall TZ150 supports two site-to-site VPNs, and CDW retails it for US$314  You'd need two.

http://www.cdw.com/shop/products/default.aspx?EDC=732219
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by:ckratsch
ID: 13741820
I'm still very curious to know whether you have one "severed" domain or two domains with the same name.
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by:WKalata
ID: 13744346
Two domains with the same name.  It's actually worked for us without any hiccups.
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