VPN Question

Posted on 2006-03-26
Last Modified: 2010-03-19
I have several clients that use VPN to connect to the 2003 SBS exchange server for email. Under VPN Properties-networking-tcp/ip-advanced, there is a checkbox. "Use Default Gateway or Remote Network" Somtimes it has to be checked and sometimes it has to be un-checked.
If a client calls me and tells me they cannot connect to the exchange server, I guide them through the process to either check it or uncheck it and it solves there problem. Is there any known reason for this, or just one of the mysteries of networking

Question by:LarryMB
    LVL 25

    Expert Comment

    actually the option is "Use Default Gateway ON Remote Network" if you are talking about what i think you are.  what this option does if it is checked (as the name implies) is tells the client computer to use the gateway on the remote computer instead of its own gateway that is set on the client PC's NIC.  Usually this option only needs to be checked if you want to get out of the network you are VPNed into (such as for surfing  the internet) while connected to the VPN.  Since they are VPNing directly into your SBS server, this option SHOULDN"T have any affect since they dont need to route traffic anywhere except straight to where they are VPNing into (the SBS server)
    LVL 9

    Accepted Solution

    This is a routing question I imagine.

    From the point of view of the client they are now a host on a remote network and the vpn connection gives their address on the remote network. They need to route packets to/from the remote exchange server through this vpn connection.

    Presumably from their perspective the default gateway could be something else entirely (or nothing at all) and packets do not get routed (or sent out to their ISP instead). So the goal would be to perhaps script up some connection script that they can run to do all this automatically.

    Have you noticed a difference in behaviour between clients with adsl connections and dial-up clients? In principle they all have ISP connections where the ISP has the default gateway and the hosts on the remote network cannot be contacted through this route - but they can through the VPN connection.
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    First, all of the connections are High Speed, either from DSL or Cable, no dialup. I had a client got to Houston this weekend and had to uncheck the box, when he got back  home to North Carolina, he had to check the box. Sometimes when he is at home he will have the same problem. I just thought that this had been a problem for someone else and there was a difinitive answer. It is more of an inconvience than a problem. It doesn't happen that often.

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