It’s becoming more difficult every day to protect your privacy while browsing online. With more and more services being compromised on a daily basis, it is hard to be assured that your personal browsing data is safe.
Using a VPN is a great way of maintaining privacy by routing traffic through your ServerMania server.
Instead of paying for a VPN provider, you should consider creating your own VPN server. It’s a lot easier than it sounds and can be done in under 5 minutes.
In this article, we will show you how to setup OpenVPN on CentOS 7.
Why might I need a personal VPN server?
Making a personal VPN server is key to maintaining your privacy online. Every time you use a public WiFi network like in a coffee shop or hotel, you have no idea where your browsing data may be routing to.
When you create your own VPN server, the network you connect to will only see the connection established between your computer and your ServerMania server. This connection is encrypted, and the local network won’t have any idea what sites you are accessing.
Even when connected to your local ISP, you can’t be certain what browsing data your provider may release to third parties. By using a VPN, you can be assured that this data is secure.
Is it hard to create my own personal VPN server?
It’s actually really easy to setup your own cheap VPN server at ServerMania. It takes only a few minutes to setup a VPN. We’ll show you how in this article.
VPN Server System Requirements
The system requirements for setting up a VPN server with OpenVPN are fairly modest:
- A ServerMania Hybrid, Cloud, or Dedicated Server
- CentOS 7 (although other distributions are supported)
- 128MB of RAM – we recommend 1GB of RAM for other system services
- 10GB of disk space for OpenVPN and other system packages
Instructions for Installing a Personal VPN Server
We’ll begin by installing wget, used to download the installation script:
yum install wget
Next, we’ll download a popular OpenVPN installation script from github:
wget https://git.io/vpn -O openvpn-install.sh
Let’s update the permissions on the file to make it executable:
chmod 755 openvpn-install.sh
Now to begin the install process:
Enter this information on the installation script:
- The primary IP of the server is automatically filled. Hit enter to proceed.
- Hit 1 to proceed with UDP installation.
- Hit enter to proceed on the default port.
- Enter the DNS provider you wish to use on the server. We recommend OpenDNS.
- Enter your name to be used when generating the client certificate and hit enter.
- Hit enter to proceed with the installation.
The script will install OpenVPN and generate all of the required keys for usage.
Starting, Stopping, and Restarting OpenVPN
After installation, OpenVPN will start automatically and will be set to start at boot. Here are the start and stop commands for your reference:
To start OpenVPN:
systemctl start email@example.com
To stop OpenVPN:
systemctl stop firstname.lastname@example.org
To restart OpenVPN:
systemctl restart email@example.com
Connecting to your VPN server
Your VPN configuration file is available at /root/client.ovpn which can be used to configure your local VPN client. You can copy the content of the files by viewing it and copying it into a local file:
Or you can use scp to download the file on your local machine:
scp user@IP:/root/client.ovpn /Local/folder
Once downloaded, you can use this file in your favourite VPN client to connect.
Popular VPN Clients
There are many clients you can use to connect to your personal VPN server. Here are some of the most popular clients:
Mac OSX VPN Client:
iOS VPN Client:
Windows VPN Client:
Android VPN Client:
You’re all set!
You can now connect using your favourite VPN client to your own VPN server.