What is different between SoftEther VPN and VPN Gate?

    We have great appreciation that SoftEther Project is mentioned by many news articles around the world recently. Unfortunately, some news articles seem to misunderstandd as if SoftEther Project is exactly equal to VPN Gate Project. That is not correct. So we would like to explain the difference between two projects here.


    What is SoftEther Project?

    SoftEther Project is to develop and distribute secure, cross-platform, easy-to-use and multi-protocol SoftEther VPN software.

    What is VPN Gate Project?

    VPN Gate Project is to develop and distribute VPN Gate software which is a plug-in module for SoftEther VPN.

    So what is SoftEther VPN?

    selogo.jpgSoftEther VPN is a VPN suite. You can make your own private VPN by using SoftEther VPN.
    For example, you install SoftEther VPN Server in your office. You return to home, and install SoftEther VPN Client in your home. Then your home PC can connect to your office. This is Remote-access VPN.

    Or, you install SoftEther VPN Server in your headquarters. You install SoftEther VPN Bridge (or SoftEther VPN Server) in your branch office. Then your branch office is linking to your headquarter. Any computers on each site can communicate with other computers on the opposite site. It is same if you have three or more sites. This is Site-to-Site VPN.

    When you configure SoftEther VPN Server, you define your own Virtual Hub Object and User Objects on VPN Server. A user or a remote-site VPN Client or VPN Bridge must have a valid credential to connect to the VPN Server. Nobody can log-in to your VPN Server without credential.

    Unlike VPN Gate Server, your own SoftEther VPN Server denies any anonymous access from the world.

    Then what is VPN Gate?

    vpngate.jpgVPN Gate is an extension module for SoftEther VPN. VPN Gate extension is disabled by default for security. You can activate VPN Gate extension on SoftEther VPN Server (and also SoftEther VPN Client).

    If you activate VPN Gate extension on VPN Server, then a Virtual Hub "VPNGATE" will be created on your VPN Server. The "VPNGATE" hub contains the "vpn" user with anonymous-attributes. This means that anyone who knows your VPN Server's IP address can connect to the "VPNGATE" hub on your VPN Server.

    Additionally, VPN Gate extension registers your "VPNGATE" hub on the www.vpngate.net web site's directory. So anyone on the world are able to connect your VPN Server's "VPNGATE" virtual hub, and communicate with any destination hosts through your VPNGATE virtual hub. (Because your "VPNGATE" virtual hub has activated Virtual NAT and DHCP function.)


    Is VPN Gate extension optional?


    VPN Gate extension is disabled by default. It never do nothing unless you activate it by your hand. If you wish to provide your SoftEther VPN Server as a volunteer server toward the world (for example, people behind the Government's Firewall), activate VPN Gate extension. Otherwise you do not activate VPN Gate extension. No VPN Gate enabled, no connection from guest users are accepted on VPN Server.


    Can I share VPN Gate's role and private role on single SoftEther VPN Server?

    You can mix your private VPN's Virtual Hub, and your public Virtual Hub for VPN Gate on single instance of SoftEther VPN Server.

    VPN Gate extension makes just a Virtual Hub named "VPNGATE" on your SoftEther VPN Server.

    "VPNGATE" Virtual Hub can be connected from everyone on the globe through obtaining a registered IP address on http://www.vpngate.net/ directory.

    If you have another Virtual Hub on the SoftEther VPN Server, that Virtual Hub is isolated from "VPNGATE" Virtual Hub. No one can access to your private Virtual Hub unless he has a valid credential to log-in your private Virtual Hub.

    So you can easily share VPN Gate's role and private role on the single SoftEther VPN Server. However, unless you have a strong intention to provide your VPN Server as a volunteer, you should not activate VPN Gate extension on your VPN Server. For more details please visit How to Provide Your Computer as a VPN Server for VPN Gate.


    Is SoftEther Project and VPN Gate Project same?


    SoftEther Project is developing SoftEther VPN Server. VPN Gate Project is developing VPN Gate extension modules and plug-ins. VPN Gate Project also hosts the global directory server of Public VPN Relay Servers on http://www.vpngate.net/.

    Some people confuse SoftEther Project and VPN Gate Project, because both two projects are hosted by University of Tsukuba, and consists of the common developers. However, each direction and purpose of two projects are different. SoftEther Project's mission is to make a secure, reliable, cross-platform and multi-protocol VPN Server. VPN Gate's mission is to promote the usage of VPN as relays to bypass government's firewall.