How-to Set Up Easynews VPN on iOS

How-to Setup Easynews VPN on iOS

Since launching our VPN service in late April, Easynews has become even more privacy-minded than in years past. While your identity has always been protected through end-to-end SSL encryption when using our HTTPS Usenet browser, we want to keep your data secure beyond your binary downloads. The Easynews VPN has user-friendly software available for Apple and Windows PCs, but additional devices can access the VPN through manual configuration. In this blog post we will be configuring the VPN on iOS for OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP.

Click the appropriate setup guide to jump to that section:
Sign in to Easynews to view the VPN server list:

 

iOS OpenVPN Setup

1. Download and install the OpenVPN Connect client from the App Store on your iOS device. Then download the Easynews VPN configuration files onto your computer.Download OpenVPN Connect from the App Store

 

2. The configuration files will save as a ZIP file. When you unzip en_configs.zip, you’ll notice that each server has its own configuration file ending in .ovpn. Select the server you want to connect to. In this example, we’ve selected one of our New York City servers nyc-a01.ovpn.
VPN configuration files will download as a .ZIP file

 

3. You will now need to transfer the .ovpn server file into the OpenVPN iOS app. Connect your mobile Apple device to your computer and select it in iTunes. When iTunes has been opened, click “Apps.” Scroll down to “File Sharing,” and from the list of applications on the left, select the OpenVPN app on your device.

 

4. From the list on the right, click “Add”, navigate to where the .ovpn server file is located, select the file you want to transfer, and click “Sync.” You can do this with multiple server files at a time if you plan to access more than one VPN server. iTunes App interface

 

5. Launch the OpenVPN app on your mobile device. You will see the name of the server you just added and below it a green plus sign button. Click on that button.
OpenVPN Connect inferface displays when a server has been imported

 

6. A prompt will appear asking for your Username and Password. Your username will be your Easynews username with @easynews added to the end (ex. username@easynews). You can choose to save the password by selecting the “Save” toggle switch. After completing the password, click on the return button on the keyboard.
Your username will be your Easynews username with @easynews added to the end (ex. username@easynews).

 

7. You are now connected to Easynews VPN on an iOS device with OpenVPN.
OpenVPN Connect interface displaying a secure connection

iOS PPTP/L2TP Setup

1. Navigate to your home screen (or whichever page contains the ‘Settings’ app) by closing the current app, pressing the ‘Home’ button near the base of the unit, or by swiping to the ‘Spotlight’ search, and entering ‘Settings’. Launch the ‘Settings’ app with a single tap.
iPhone 'Settings' pane

 

2. Users who haven’t already set up a custom network connection need to create one through the ‘General’ settings pane using the ‘VPN’ item at the bottom of the menu (see right diagram). For those who may already have an existing VPN connection, select the ‘VPN’ item from ‘Settings’ page (left diagram.)

iOS inferface depicting two locations where the 'VPN' item can be found

For those who may already have an existing VPN connection, select the ‘VPN’ item from ‘Settings’ page. Users who haven’t already setup a custom network connection need to create one through the ‘General’ settings pane, using the ‘VPN’ item at the bottom of the menu.

 

3. Create a new VPN connection by locating by opening ‘VPN’ item from the corresponding menu. This item may contain the text ‘Not Configured’, if you haven’t already setup a VPN connection. Tap this item to continue. From the ‘VPN’ settings page, tap the item labeled ‘Add VPN Configuration…’.

From here, the directions between PPTP and L2TP configurations are different. Select the appropriate set of instructions to jump to that section:

Continue with PPTP instructions
Continue with L2TP instructions

Interested in trying the Easynews VPN? Start a free trial today!

 

 

 

iOS PPTP Setup (cont’d)

PPTP configuration settings

4. In the ‘Add Configuration’ pane, look for the protocol selector tabs near the top — L2TP will be selected by default; however, this tutorial deals with PPTP. Tap the ‘PPTP’ tab near the top of the frame and continue to the next step.

 

5. The frame below the protocol tabs contains the required VPN settings — for the ‘Description’ field, fill in a descriptive title for your new VPN connection. For the ‘Server’ field below, enter [SERVER NAME(S)] (You will replace [SERVER NAME] with the server you would like to connect to. A full list of servers can be found here). When filling in the ‘Account’ field you will use your Easynews username with @easynews at the end (ex. username@easynews). Also, for both the ‘Account’ and ‘Password’ fields, keep in mind our authentication system is case-sensitive. Even a single miscapitalized letter will cause your connection attempt to error out. Do NOT fill the ‘RSA SecurID’ field between the ‘Account’ and ‘Password’ fields — leave the switch *OFF*. Confirm that the ‘Send All Traffic’ switch is in the ‘ON’ position. Finally, look for the blue ‘Save’ button in the upper-right corner of the panel and tap to commit your settings.

 

iOS VPN PPTP interface6. After saving, you will be brought back to the previous VPN connections page. To test the connection, look for the first item at the top of the category labeled ‘VPN Configurations.’ After you have selected your connection, marked with a check, look for the ON/OFF switch at the top of the frame. Simply press the switch, changing it to the ON position to initialize the connection. A VPN icon indicator will appear in your mobile service status bar to confirm your private network connection.

 

7. Once the connection has begun, look for the new item below the ON/OFF switch with a ‘Status’ label. Any error or warning messages will display here. The last message before a successful connection can be seen in the example, ‘Authenticating…’ If you can’t seem to get beyond this point, confirm that you’ve entered your username and password correctly. Contact our support team for further assistance if you continue to have trouble, and provide any error or warning messages shown in the status indicator.

 

8. Upon successful connection to the server, a ‘Connected:’ status message will be visible, with the uptime count to the right. One thing to keep in mind about VPN access on Apple mobile devices is when the device goes to the lock screen, or to sleep, the VPN session will end. This behavior is ‘working as indented,’ a feature implemented by Apple to secure access to your saved login information. Beyond that, your iPad is now connected securely to your Wi-Fi or mobile network, and you can have peace of mind knowing that prying eyes are not snooping on your activities.

 

 

iOS L2TP Setup (cont’d)

4. In the ‘Add Configuration’ pane, look for the protocol selector tabs near the top — L2TP will be selected by default, and as this tutorial deals with L2TP, no change is necessary. If for whatever reason any other protocols are already selected, tap the ‘L2TP’ tab near the top of the frame and continue to the next step.

L2TP 'Add Configuation' pane

'Add Configuration' interface for L2TP VPN

 

5. The frame below the protocol tabs contains the required VPN settings. For the ‘Description’ field, fill in a descriptive title for your new VPN connection. For the ‘Server’ field below, enter [SERVER NAME(S)] (You will replace [SERVER NAME] with the server you would like to connect to. A full list of servers can be found here). When filling in the ‘Account’ field you will use your Easynews username with @easynews at the end (ex. username@easynews). For both the ‘Account’ and ‘Password’ fields, keep in mind our authentication system is case-sensitive. Even a single miscapitalized letter will cause your connection attempt to error out. Do NOT fill the ‘RSA SecurID’ field between the ‘Account’ and ‘Password’ fields – leave the switch *OFF*. Enter the Easynews pre-shared secret key into the ‘Secret’ field — the key is ‘vpn,’ without quotes. Confirm that the ‘Send All Traffic’ switch is in the ‘ON’ position. Finally, look for the blue ‘Save’ button in the upper-right corner of the panel and tap to commit your settings.

 

6. After saving, you will be brought back to the previous VPN connections page. To test the connection, look for the first item at the top of the category labeled ‘VPN Configurations…’ After you have selected your connection, marked with a ‘check’, look for the ON/OFF switch at the top of the frame — simply press the switch, changing it to the ON position to initialize the connection.
Confirmed connection settings - L2TP

 

7. Once the connection has begun, look for the new item below the ON/OFF switch with a ‘Status’ label. Any error or warning messages will display here. If you can’t seem to get beyond this point, confirm that you’ve entered your username and password correctly. Reply back for further assistance if you continue to have trouble, and provide any error or warning messages shown in the status indicator.

 

8. Upon successful connection to the server, a ‘Connected:’ status message will be visible, with the uptime count to the right. One thing to keep in mind about VPN access on Apple mobile devices is when the device goes to the lock screen, or to sleep, the VPN session will end. This behavior is ‘working as indented,’ a feature implemented by Apple to secure access to your saved login information. Beyond that, your iPad is now connected securely to your Wi-Fi or mobile network, and you can have peace of mind knowing that prying eyes are not snooping on your activities.

 

What kind of Easynews guide would you like to see next? Sound off in the comment section below!

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