VPN / Dedicated server

Hello everyone,

just thought that maybe someone here can help me. For professional reasons I’d like to rent a VPN connection for a few years, an essentially easy task. Mainly because I’d like to have the added security when travelling and surfing from open hotspots, but also since I’ll be spending extended periods of time in China, and would like to continue using Facebook etc. I looked into renting a VPN, and found a few services that seem promising. However, evaluating which is “the best” is a bit tricky.
Additionally, I was thinking about renting a dedicated virtual server for a few games I like to play, like Terraria. Now the question is if anyone here know a good service that would allow me to do both ? I am aware that I can setup a VPN in a rented server, but I am not sure if my linux-fu is strong enough to establish and maintain a secure VPN, so would need support from a company, I think.

I want to be sure I understand what you seem to be asking and/or offer you a correction if “VPN” is not the precise term you are thinking it is.

In my world, “VPN” means Virtual Private Network and is a way of “tunneling” from whatever (presumably insecure) internet service you are using into a specific private network. Example: A company may offer its employees a VPN connection to the office network and a remote employee will use this to get and put files on the network server. The use of any particular VPN would be fairly specific although I am aware you can use the VPN tunnel and then ‘surf the web’ from the private network - a sort of proxy if you will - and I gather that this (not any particular private network) is your end goal? Something to do with the restrictions on internet use in China I am guessing?

That being said, and your follow-up about a hosted server, I think you’re going about it backwards. You will want to secure a hosted server and then go about setting up a VPN which will allow you to connect to it. The hosting service may be able to assist with this. But at a minimum, if the proxy-esque web surfing is the goal, this server will need to have some basic DNS services so that you can use the VPN connection as a jump point for further internet browsing. If it were a windows server I’d say you’d want to configure it pretty much as a DC (domain controller) with DNS and DHCP. I do not know how to go about this in the *nix environment.

Just remembered… is the term you are thinking of “anonymizer”? Is using a VPN the best way to accomplish this (in China)? I don’t know much about it but it seemed like this was what you meant.

Sorry that I wasn’t clear enough. And thanks for trying to help !

Exactly what I meant. They are used extensively to make webpages like Googlemail and Facebook available from China. My current place of employment has that, and it is very broad in it’s application. But I will not be employed here anymore when in China.


Entirely possible.

Can be Windows, of course. But yes, this is essentially what I want. There are routing services providing VPNs available, but it seems that with a dedicated server I have more options (Storage, perhaps Terraria). My problem is that I have no idea how complex setting up a VPN is, and if there are companies that offer dedicated servers plus assistance in setting up a VPN.

Maybe, but as far as I know simple procxy anonyzations doesn’t really work there. Or I might not understand the term correctly. From what I gather the standard for expats etc. in China is to connect to a VPN, preferably one with the possibility to change IP addresses.

OK, so we understand each other. This is good. :) Now comes the point where I sadly tell you that I don’t have any information to help in your specific request. But maybe that we hashed it out will make it perfectly clear to someone who has that knowledge and they can jump in.

Since this appears to be a real need for people needing unfettered internet access from places like China it would not surprise me at all to learn that this type of VPN package is offered by outside 3rd parties. It’s just outside my area of knowledge. Good luck!

I read about this VPN provider in an Atlantic magazine article back in ‘07, but they’re still around and kickin’: http://www.witopia.net/products/.

Looks like $70/year. They also offer a hardware router pre-confgured to route all devices through their VPN, if you don’t want to deal w/ software clients on all your various gadgets when at your ‘homebase’ in China.

Yes, you can install a VPN server like openvpn on a hosted VPS or dedicated box, if they allow it in their terms of service. It’ll require a certain limited amount of sysadmin knowledge on linux. If you get a windows VPS, I imagine you just click a checkbox somewhere. The dedicated box will cost at least $10/month, depending on the amount of bandwidth you need.

Alternatively you could just rent a VPN somewhere; they are quite popular with P2P pirates who already have a letter from their ISP and only cost a couple dollars per month.

Of you could just use Tor, that’s what most of the people in china/etc do. But it will hurt your speed.

Great, thanks for the advice everyone !
From what I can see, the VPN-providers never have other options added, it is pure network. TOR I’d rather avoid - tried it in the past, it is a very nice idea, but speeds are abysmal. So, a dedicated rented server seems to be the choice. I do not need extremely high transfer volumes (no large files), but decent speed would be good. Any recommendations ?

We use 6sync for this site and linode is always a safe recommendation also. Be sure to ask them if they allow you to run a VPN before signing up.

Again you will need sysadmin experience to set it up, so if you’re comfortable with that, godspeed.

Weeelllll… you live, you learn. In other words - some.

Thanks for the info !

If it’s just for browsing, you can rent any linux/unix box or virtual machine, install a socks5 proxy on it and then use SSH to connect to that box and tunnel your connection to the proxy. In other words, the ssh client would open a port on your local computer (you point your browser to that port) and forward the traffic to the socks deamon on the server. The traffic is encrypted. Many other services can be configure to use a proxy too.

edit: a potential issue could be dns resolving, I don’t know whether china censors dns records

Don’t see why that would be any easier than just installing openvpn and doing it the “right” way.

It’s easier because you don’t even need to install anything. OpenSSH itself has all the software you need to act as a secure SOCKS proxy. Order a cheap VPS from somewhere and go with that.

BTW, terraria only has a windows binary for a dedicated server.

Isn’t there the third-party server ? Sure, not version 1.1 yet, but soon…

And thanks for the advice, will look into that !

Look into FuseVPS if you decide to go that route. They don’t really provide you with any service beyond “Here’s your login!” but they’re also unbelievably cheap and responsive enough when you file support tickets.

A quick google suggests the dedicated server portion can run in Mono. Nice!

China actively blocks IP traffic to some well-known VPN service providers.

Yeah, just run the SSH deamon on the server on port 443 (that’s normally reserved for HTTPS) and you can connect to it from almost anywhere.

And nice tip about the built-in socks proxy in openssh. I did not know that.

For dedicated server i am using purevpn which is best known for dedicated IP. I am living in USA and i am using it for getting my own personal dedicated server. Purevpn is cheap and reliable in security and privacy all my data is personalized and safe… I have found this tool from known provider platform of USA… [url deleted]

REPORTED. And I’d report the other VPN spam post by the same user but apparently I need to wait 10 minutes.

I got your back!