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vpn connection issues
CLBRALLEY
Member

Has anyone found a resolution to the know issue that some devices have connecting to a vpn?

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Re: vpn connection issues
John_Getzke
Leader
Leader

We need more information to answer your question.  Please share what issue you are referring to with a description or a link to the problem.  The more info the better.

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Re: vpn connection issues
jsulger
Member

I am having an issue with information stopping after connecting to a pptp vpn. I think this issue started this Monday.

The same thing happens with both of my Verizon phones and with 6 other phones that belong to people I work with. I also work with two others who have ATT phones because of coverage where they live and they do not have this issue.

I am using PPTP VPN server on centos boxes and am seeing the issue at all VPN server locations. The phones are using the native VPN android client and until Monday have been working fine.

Once any of the phones connect to the server the work fine until approximately 1 minute has passed and then they stop passing traffic. The Client shows it is still connected as well as the VPN server shows the client connected but it stops passing traffic.

Now I understand that if this is happening on one device then it is probably that device but it is happening on all Verizon phones. I have reset/factory reset and still have the same issue. This has happened before and has turned out to be something that changed on the Verizon network side.

I cannot get transferred to anyone in tech support that even knows what a VPN is. Then they call another level that says sorry we don't support that even though it has worked fine. I understand that Verizon doesn't support the VPN but they do support the transport between Verizon client and the server. Even though Verizon doesn't support Facebook I guarantee that if some change on the network caused it to stop working they would look into it and get it fixed.

I totally understand that many people use a VPN to circumvent things but for those of us who use it for a legitimate reason really sucks.

Also the other thing that I don't understand is why cant Verizon just be truthful and honest about the fact that they made a change that is causing this instead of using the excuse that they don't support something.

I like the coverage that Verizon has even though they are higher priced but if it doesn't work for what I need then it doesn't matter how better the coverage.

Maybe someone who actually knows what a VPN is at Verizon can take a look and get it fixed. 

Re: vpn connection issues
John_Getzke
Leader
Leader

A VPN is only encrypting the contents of your data packets as it traverses the internet.  The data packets still touch the individual end points between the VPN clients and Servers.

Verizon is only one to a few hops between your clients and the VPN server.  Just because VZW is your ISP and first hop from the client doesn't mean that VZW is responsible for a change that disrupts communication to a VPN server.  The problem could very well be another ISP in a situation like this failing to pass along packets to VZW.  If the traffic only touches VZW and then arrives at the destination then you may have something for VZW to dig into.

What you could do is try to do a traceroute between a client on a VZW connection and the VPN server.  Try to plot out all of the contact points between a VZW phone and another user on ATT.  Compare and see if they all go through the same spots or not.  If there is a difference then investigate in that area and see if they are detecting any drops from your client or VPN server.  Id bet the results will be different.

The one minute factor here is interesting.  We use a Cisco VPN client and server that has policies to evaluate the connection after 60 seconds.  A lot of cert and authentication checking mechanics fire off around this point too.  If a certain kind of technology is available on the connection our VPN policy was to try and switch over and use it, causing a brief reconnection.  We eventually disabled that feature as it was causing too much frustration for too little benefit.  Perhaps you have something configured into your current VPN client or server too.  Such a feature might be intended to optimize your connection but in this case ended up breaking it.

Have you run this by the folks at CentOS yet? Does the problem happen on any other VPN Server or clients as a comparison?

Other threads I could find related to CentOS and one minute:

linux - Strange OpenVPN behavior - disconnects after one minute - Server Fault

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Re: vpn connection issues
jsulger
Member

Thanks for the information...

Fact - Worked fine on at least 8 Verizon Phones before Monday

Fact - Nothing has changed on any of the phones

Fact - Nothing has changed on the any of the VPN Servers

Fact - VPN connects and works for 1 minute on all 8 phones

Fact - After 1 minute traffic no longer routes on all 8 phones

Fact - Phones and VPN server still show a connection but no traffic

Fact - The VPN works correctly with no issues when connected using a wireless connection

Fact - Two people that have ATT phones the VPN works correctly over the Cellular Network.

This is about as simple a VPN as possible. No special security measures. Just plain User and Pass. We use this to access the private network so that we can connect to a configuration web page on the device we are programming. Not concerned about security.

The link you sent is about OpenVPN which does use a file that is installed on the phone. We are not using this at all and no certs.

It worked a week ago on all phones and now doesn't even though nothing changed on clients or servers. I would think that at least someone at Verizon could look into it. If we are having the issue across 8 different phones I cannot believe that others aren't having the same problem.

Re: vpn connection issues
vzw_customer_support
Customer Support

It's important that your VPN connects, jsulger. I appreciate all the information you provided so far. Our goal is to ensure your phone connects properly to the Verizon network so you can place calls, send text messages, and connect to mobile data (when not connected to a VPN or Wifi). Are these functions working properly on your phone? Were there any changes such a software update on your phone?

 

Tracy_VZW
Follow us on TWITTER @VZWSupport
If my response answered your question please click the _Correct Answer_ button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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Re: vpn connection issues
jsulger
Member

Everything works correctly on the cellular network until I connect the VPN.

Once the VPN connects everything on the cellular network works correctly for exactly 1 minute and then everything stops. VPN still shows connected but no data will work. I have not changed anything on the phone or on the VPN server.

I think it is pretty obvious that something on the Verizon network starts blocking the data 1 minute after the VPN has been connected as this happens on 8 other Verizon phones that did not have any changes also.

I am not exactly sure when it stopped working correctly but noticed it last Monday.

This has happened before and turned out to be something on the Verizon network.

I verified this morning that I am having the same issue.

How can you explain the same thing happening on 10 phones that are all Verizon but that it works fine on 2 ATT phones and then say it is my devices or my server.

I can use my hotspot to connect my laptop and then connect to the VPN on my laptop and works just fine. I can connect my phones to a wireless network and it connects and works just fine. It is only when using the Verizon Network that it cuts everything off exactly 1 minute after connected.

Again, there were no software updates or changes on the phone since this was last working correctly. And again. 10 phones.

Re: vpn connection issues
tech_kyle
Member

I just moved from a Nexus 6 to a Pixel 3 XL. I have always been able to connect to my work via VPN on the Nexus 6, but I am unable to over the Pixel 3 XL. I would have assumed it was a phone issue but interestingly enough, I am unable to traceroute very far towards my work IP.

Tracing route to <techkyle's work IP> over a maximum of 30 hops

  0  Sager [192.168.43.249]
  1  192.168.43.86
  2  193.sub-66-174-27.myvzw.com [66.174.27.193]
  3     *        *        *

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Re: vpn connection issues
tech_kyle
Member

Nevermind, I was using pathping which gave up a little too easily. I'm able to tracert successfully. Kind of feels like VPN connections are intentionally broken.

For me, the VPN fails to establish at all.

I tried to edit my post above, but I apparently can't anymore.

Re: vpn connection issues
Ann154
Expert
Expert

tech.kyle wrote:

Nevermind, I was using pathping which gave up a little too easily. I'm able to tracert successfully. Kind of feels like VPN connections are intentionally broken.

For me, the VPN fails to establish at all.

I tried to edit my post above, but I apparently can't anymore.

There is a five minute edit window. After that, you can't edit your own posts.

I'm most definitely NOT a VZW employee. If a post answered your question, please mark it as the answer.