How to Create Your Own VPN

Have you ever wanted to have your own private and secure connection to the internet, without relying on third-party VPN or Virtual Private Network services that might be slow, unreliable, or shady? If so, you might be interested in create your own VPN server on the cloud.

A VPN is a technology that allows you to create a secure and encrypted connection between your device and another device on the internet. By create your own VPN server on the cloud, you can have more control, privacy, security, access, and performance for your online activities. In this article, we will show you how to do that step by step.

What is a VPN and Why You Need One

A VPN works by creating a tunnel between your device and a remote server on the internet. All your internet traffic goes through this tunnel, which is encrypted and secured from prying eyes. This way, you can hide your IP address, location, and online activity from anyone who might want to spy on you, such as hackers, ISPs, governments.

How to Choose a Cloud Service Provider for Your VPN

If you want to create your own VPN server on the cloud, you will need to choose a cloud service provider that suits your needs and budget. A cloud service provider is a company that offers cloud computing services, such as virtual machines (VMs), storage, networking, databases, etc. You can use these services to host your own applications.

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Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cloud Service Provider

  • Price: Compare costs, consider discounts, and explore free trials to find the best value.
  • Performance: Check specifications, features, and reviews to meet your expectations.
  • Security: Verify protection, encryption, policies, and certifications for data safety.
  • Support: Evaluate customer service availability, responsiveness, and helpfulness.

Popular Cloud Service Providers for VPNs

  • DigitalOcean: Simple and affordable cloud provider with $5/month droplets for VPN servers, user-friendly interface, and global locations.
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS): Comprehensive cloud services, EC2 instances from $0.0058/hour, free tier, and global network.
  • Google Cloud Platform (GCP): Innovative cloud services, Compute Engine instances from $0.0076/hour, free tier, cutting-edge tech, high performance.

How to Create Your Own VPN Server on the Cloud

  1. Choose a Cloud Platform: To create your own VPN You can use various cloud providers, for this guide, we’ll use Google Cloud Platform (GCP) because they offer a $300 free trial credit for new users.
  2. You’ll need to sign up for an account, but you won’t be charged initially.
  3. Access Google Cloud Shell: Once you’re in your GCP Console, click on “Cloud console” in the upper-right corner. This is where you’ll perform most of the setup.
  4. Download Algo VPN Tools: We’ll use Algo, a set of VPN setup tools. In the Cloud Shell, type this command and press Enter. This command downloads Algo.

git clone https://github.com/trailofbits/algo.git

  1. Create a Project and Service Account: Execute a series of commands to set up a project and service account for your VPN server.
  2. These commands ensure that you have the necessary resources. Just copy and paste each command one by one.
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PROJECT_ID=${USER}-algo-vpn BILLING_ID=”$(gcloud beta billing accounts list -format=”value(ACCOUNT_ID)”)” gcloud projects create ${PROJECT_ID} -name algo-vpn -set-as-default gcloud beta billing projects link ${PROJECT_ID} -billing-account ${BILLING_ID} gcloud iam service-accounts create algo-vpn -display-name “Algo VPN” gcloud iam service-accounts keys create configs/gce.json -iam-account algo-vpn@${PROJECT_ID}.iam.gserviceaccount.com gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding ${PROJECT_ID} -member serviceAccount:algo-vpn@${PROJECT_ID}.iam.gserviceaccount.com -role roles/compute.admin gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding ${PROJECT_ID} -member serviceAccount:algo-vpn@${PROJECT_ID}.iam.gserviceaccount.com -role roles/iam.serviceAccountUser gcloud services enable compute.googleapis.com

  1. Install Required Python Tool: Run this command to install a Python tool needed for Algo:

sudo apt install -y -no-install-recommends python3-virtualenv

  1. Install Algo’s Dependencies: Paste this command to install Algo’s other dependencies:

python3 -m virtualenv -python=”$(command -v python3)” .env && source .env/bin/activate && python3 -m pip install -U pip virtualenv && python3 -m pip install -r requirements.txt

  1. This may produce a lot of output, but don’t worry unless you see errors.
  1. Edit Algo’s Configuration: To customize your VPN settings, use the nano text editor by typing:

nano config.cfg

  1. You can make changes based on your preferences. Pay attention to user settings because you can’t add more users after the server is running.
  1. Start the Setup Wizard: Run this command to start Algo’s setup wizard:

./algo -e “provider=gce” “gce_credentials_file=$(pwd)/configs/gce.json” Follow the wizard’s prompts: Choose a server name (the default is “algo”). Decide whether to enable “Connect on Demand” for iOS and Mac devices. Choose whether to add users later (the default is “No”). Opt for automatic ad blocking if you want it. If you’re not familiar with SSH tunneling, choose “No.” Select the region for your VPN server.

  1. Wait for Setup: Give it some time, and if everything goes smoothly, you’ve successfully create your own VPN server using GCP.
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How to Secure and Optimize Your VPN Server

Tips for Securing Your VPN Server

  • Use strong encryption: Protect your VPN with robust encryption like AES-256-GCM and UDP.
  • Use strong passwords: Secure server and client accounts with strong, unique passwords.
  • Use firewall rules: Set up network traffic restrictions in your server or cloud provider’s firewall settings.
  • Use two-factor authentication: Enhance security with 2FA for login, requiring a code or device alongside your password.

Tips for Optimizing Your VPN Server

  • Choose a nearby region: Opt for a server location close to you or your target content to reduce latency and boost VPN speed.
  • Select an appropriate machine type: Match your server’s machine type to your needs and budget, considering CPU and memory capacity.
  • Monitor and update your server: Regularly check and update your server’s status, usage, and software for smooth, secure operation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Conclusion

Create your own VPN server on the cloud is not as difficult as it might seem. You just need to choose a cloud service provider, launch a virtual machine instance, install and configure OpenVPN, download and install OpenVPN client, and connect to your VPN server.

You can also secure and optimize your VPN server by following some tips and best practices. By create your own VPN server on the cloud, you can enjoy the benefits of using a VPN without the drawbacks of using a VPN service. You can have more control, privacy, security, access, and performance for your online activities.