Virtual Private Network Architectures

In this article we are going to examine the different architectures of VPN networks and their categorizations.

Virtual Private Networks are categorized in a number of ways; depending on the point of view one examines them. The different ways of categorisation are described below:

  1. Based on their correlation with the levels of the modelOSI reference, Virtual Private Networks are categorized as follows:
    1. In Virtual Private Networks Level 3 (Network). In it belongs to VPNs built on IP networks and use the IPSec protocol, as well as the VPN built onto MPLS networks.
    2. In Virtual Private Networks Level 2 (Pairing Data). This category includes VPNs in which one of the protocols is used L2F, PPTP, L2TP. Also Level 2 VPN can be developed on MPLS technology.
    3. In Level 4 Virtual Networks (Transport). In it the category falls under the VPNs in which SSL protocol is used.
  2. Based on the type of tunnel developed (where with the term diode means practically the conceivable circuit is formed, through which the transmission of the data in the VPN). There are two types of identify and the corresponding category to which it falls a VPN:
    1. voluntary tunnels;
    2. “Mandatory” diodes (compulsory or mandatory) tunnels).
  3. Based on who the VPN end users are (i.e. which are the two parties to the conversation). So we have:
    1. Client-to-LAN structure VPNs; where in essence a simple user is connected to the computer on a local network. This kind of VPNs are also called ‘Virtual Private Networks Remote Access”
    2. LAN-to-LAN structure VPNs; where the data transfer diode develops between two local networks. A Virtual Private Network is fully described if assigned in some kind for all three of the above categorizations. For example, we can refer to a VPN as follows: uses the L2TP protocol, the diode being developed is spontaneous and, finally, it is remote access.


In this article we examined and analyse the various VPN architectures that are available. If you liked this article, feel free to share it with the rest of the IT/Internet community. Here’s a  reliable free VPN network – if you want to test the waters.