I’m having trouble with a PPTP connection.

PPTP (Point to Point Tunneling Protocol) is Microsoft’s current protocol for establishing Virtual Private Networks (VPN) over the Internet. A VPN provides a secure, encrypted connection between two computers over the public Internet.

Other VPN help can be found on this page.

Check your Router!

Since PPTP is a special protocol, NAT based routers need to handle it differently than other protocols.  Not every Router has the capability to handle PPTP and those that do may only allow PPTP Clients on your LAN to connect to a remote PPTP server, and not allow you to host a PPTP server on your LAN.  So check your Router’s documentation.

Host a PPTP Server

If you want to host a PPTP server on your LAN, you will probably need to forward  or map TCP and UDP port 1723 through your router’s firewall.

Establishing a VPN Client connection

There are two important steps to creating a VPN connection in Windows95/98/NT4:

  1. Adding the VPN Adapter Device in the Network control panel

  2. Creating a VPN Connection profile in DialUpNetworking

Yes, I know that the second step isn’t intuitive to those of you who are using cable modem or ‘DSL connections, but that’s the way Microsoft wants it done.

If you’re running Win95, you should seriously consider upgrading to Win98 or at least download and install the DUN1.3 updateClick here to download the update.

Once you get the VPN Device installed, you’ll need to create a DUN profile for the VPN connection.  Do this the same as you would for a normal DUN profile, but select the “Microsoft VPN Adapter” as the device used for the profile.

You then need to configure and test the profile.  That’s described nicely in this article from ZyXEL. Although the article refers to PPTP setup for the ZyXEL product, you should be able to figure out what you need to do for your router.

Learn More 

If you’re interested in learning more about PPTP, check the articles on this page.