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Alvin Bryan

Alvin Bryan is a freelance writer and online privacy enthusiast enthusiast currently contributing quality tips and troubleshooting on personal VPN services, and online privacy and security news. You can also find him on Google +.

Virtual Private Networks were first conceived and created to allow companies to keep their data secure by encrypting and encapsulating it, then sending it through a private tunnel. Different protocols have evolved over the course of time to meet different needs. Below is the basic information about Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) and OpenVPN so you can choose the best one for your needs, either PPTP VPN or OpenVPN.


The Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), built in the days of dial-up, is the foundation of PPTP. It forms the basis of data transfers over the net, with negotiation and channel encryption. It uses Microsoft Point-to-Point Encryption and MS-CHAP or EAP-TLS authentication keys. PPTP VPN uses 128-bit encryption, which can be broken without using brute force. The EAP-Identity and –Success/Fail messages are unprotected, allowing hackers to snoop and fake them, respectively. Another security issue is that data integrity and replay protection are not provided by PPTP. There is no proof that the data was really sent by the person it claims to have been sent from. There is also no way to know whether a hacker captured and altered the data, for instance the authentication credentials, then replayed it to trick the server into accepting the data.

PPTP VPN compatibilityCompatibility-wise, however, PPTP VPN is the most supported, built-in for most mobile devices, tablets, and desktops. It is also supported by firewalls like ISA Server, Cisco PIX, and Sonic wall. The PPTP VPN encryption and compression load is light, so it is fast. This is what you get in exchange for lighter security. PPTP VPN is also very stable, and very easy to configure and maintain.


OpenVPN, the latest VPN tunneling protocol, is SSL based SSTP, or Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol. SSTP tunnels IP packets using PPP framing on top of SSL, the Secure Socket Layer. SSL used cryptographic keys, requiring digital data authentication certificates on both ends for the data transfer to complete.

OpenVPN SSL certificateOpenVPN was designed to secure modern broadband networks with OpenSSL encryption. Because of this, it currently lacks support for many tablets and mobile devices, but offers the highest level of encryption available. OpenVPN can also run over UDP and TCP/IP network protocols. These offer the tightest network security to date. SSL based protocols are impossible to block, making it very difficult to disable. There are no known weak points in OpenVPN security.

Unlike with other encryption protocols, the connection speed is not affected with OpenVPN. The tunnel created is also the most stable. With 160-bit encryption, you get speed and high security, and with 256-bit encryption, you get the ultimate security but at slower transfer speeds. OpenVPN can also apply 128-bit encryption if greater speeds are required, and rely on SSL authentication and SSTP for data security. Data integrity also remains high, regardless of the encryption used. OpenVPN is supported by most desktops, and is recommended by security experts for Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux. OpenVPN also supports Android devices.


OpenVPN SecurityOpenVPN scores the highest on all counts except compatibility. It provides the highest level of security while maintaining high speeds and data integrity. – Security, Speed, Stability and ease of Setup – and is the best option for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. ExpressVPN offers OpenVPN by default on these operating systems, and also works very well on Android. In places with heavily censored internet, ExpressVPN’s OpenVPN is the service that can guarantee access, anonymity and stability.