vpn vs direct RDP to SQL box

when you connect to a network via VPN and then connect through SSMS to a SQL Server

vs

when you connect to a network via VPN and then connect to a SQL Server via RDP and then use SSMS

what are the pros and cons, from your experience?
which was faster etc. for file transfers or other operations..
do you try to avoid VPN when possible, like above possible scenarios..
from SQL server (database operation perspective) what aspect of VPN can be made better or room for improvement for better performance/working(user)experience?
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dbaSQLConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I connect to all of my customers remotely, so I use the VPN and RDP every day, numerous times.

>>what are the pros and cons, from your experience?
Pros -- it works.  Assuming you have the proper authentication set up at the targeted domain, it is very manageable, and works well.
Cons -- You need to be careful that you don't use multiple VPNs at once.  I have done this before and found my local resolution becomes suspect.  I can often times not hit the server names and have to go in by IP.  There are other complications as well, so just make sure you only use one VPN at a time.

>>which was faster etc. for file transfers or other operations..
You are comparing apples to oranges.  VPN and RDP are not one and the same. You do not have to use VPN to RDP, but if you are RDPing over a VPN session, it is very likely the additional layer will slow the operation.

>>do you try to avoid VPN when possible, like above possible scenarios..
No.  Again, I handle all of my customers remotely, so in many cases VPN is a requirement.  As long as it is managed correctly in the targeted domain, and you're using it right on your end, I don't see any reason to avoid it.

>>from SQL server (database operation perspective) what aspect of VPN can be made better or room for improvement for better performance/working(user)experience?
I would be inclined to say interaction between multiple VPNs.  But I say this because sometimes I need to hop on another customer's site for some reason, and it can be inconvenient if I have to close one customer's session down first, in order to do so.  Aside from that, I don't really have any problems with VPN, or anything that I believe should be changed/improved.
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ZberteocConnect With a Mentor Commented:
The main difference boils down to this:

If you use the SSMS on your local to connect to the remote SQL server obviously everything will run slower because the data from the  query request has to go to the server through the network and then the data from the result sets has to come back through the same network connection. If the results are big the impact in response time could be significant.

If you run the SSMS on the remote server everything runs locally and very fast only the screen image will come through the network, which is much less data with no performance impact.

I definitely prefer to work on the remote server.
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