VPN clients for Android and iOS

Tunnel Constructor

OpenVPN Connect for Android

Android also needed a separate app for connecting to the OpenVPN server. The manufacturer provides OpenVPN Connect in Google Play. After starting the app, I started the profile import. Here, too, I had the choice of retrieving the OVPN file via Private Tunnel , Access Server , or an SD card, which is what I chose. The VPN client then showed the imported profile, which I connected to the server (Figure 3). Once the app had established the connection, all traffic ran through the VPN client.

Figure 3: OpenVPN Connect is reliable in Android, too.

OpenVPN Client Free for Android

The manufacturer of the OpenVPN Client Free app promises more and better functions than OpenVPN Connect. After installing it from the Google Play store and opening the app, I pressed the + button to reach an extensive configuration page. After creating the remote server, I switched to authentication. Unlike the original client, you don't do this with an OVPN file; instead, you select certificate files, which open up a variety of different settings, such as encryption and routing (Figure 4). Among other things, I was able to set whether the VPN client should redirect everything or just the data traffic to the local network. The app also supports IPv6, but is not set up using mobile device management (MDM, i.e., security software used by the IT department to manage and secure mobile devices).

Figure 4: OpenVPN Client Free has a number of additional configuration options.

NCP VPN Client for Android

Another option is the use of a fee-based solution with NCP VPN Client (the basic app), which is a universal IPsec VPN client that provides compatibility with all VPN gateways commonly on the market (e.g., NCP, Cisco, Juniper/NetScreen ScreenOS, Microsoft Server 2008 R2, Check Point, SonicWALL, LANCOM Systems, Teldat, Astaro, AVM FRITZ!Box). NCP developed the app with the direct aim of accessing the corporate network (Figure 5).

Figure 5: NCP VPN Client displays the full configuration clearly on one page.

After purchasing NCP VPN Client and installing it on the Android device, I launched the app. An integrated IPsec test connection makes it possible to examine and make sure that the app is working, independent of the actual settings. To create a new profile, you go to Configure | Profile configuration . After I supplied the details for the Windows VPN server, I set up the connection, which took a few seconds to establish. I really liked the Auto Reconnect Mode during the test. This features means the VPN client automatically reestablishes the tunnel after an interruption (e.g., if the user switches the Internet connection from WiFi to wireless mobile data, the app reestablishes the VPN tunnel).

As with all the other VPN clients, NCP VPN Client could not connect to OpenVPN. Anyone who needs PKCS#12 certificate or IKEv2 support will have to use the $30 Premium version. Sadly, neither of the versions offers MDM support.

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