VPNs with IPsec

Information Technology Professionals Assn. (SAGE-AU) WA
Information Technology Professionals Assn. (SAGE-AU) WA
Public group

The Emerson Bar

356 Murray St · Perth

How to find us

If you get there late, head upstairs to the venue's Glamour Bar. Call 0490 249709 for more info.

Location image of event venue


Alastair Irvine will be presenting on IPsec, which is a cross-platform, network-layer crypto facility built into the TCP/IP stack of all modern operating systems. It was designed for IPv6 but was back-ported to IPv4 many years ago.

One of the ways in which IPsec can be used is "tunnel mode", which is indistinguishable in practice from regular VPNs provided by OpenVPN or Cisco's vpnc client for example.

This presentation will cover the use of IPsec with locally-generated X.509 certificates. I'll describe a Makefile that I wrote that acts as a Public Key Infrastructure (a.k.a. Certificate Authority) facility, allowing a trust framework to be established without relying on passwords or external authorisation. Only someone who has been issued a certificate can connect, and any of these certificates can be revoked on request by adding it to a list on the VPN server.

The strongSwan software is used on the server, and on Linux/Unix clients, but clients on other platforms are supported.


Alastair is a Software Engineer and system administrator by trade.

He has a BSc in Computer Science from Curtin University.

His computer-related interests lie in various areas within his
trade; suffice to say that he is a "geek of many colours". :)
Alastair is a die-hard FOSS user and Linux fan.

He is also a freelancer with his own business. Warpspace IT is a
consultancy with a fairly broad focus on the technical side of IT.

The Emerson Bar (formerly Carnegie's) is located on Murray Street, Perth, near the corner of King St. It is within walking distance of the Esplanade Busport, Perth Underground Busport and Perth Train Station. The Red and Yellow Cat buses travel along adjacent parallel streets.

For those who are driving, Murray Street is now two-way, and conveniently accessible from the CBD, the freeway and West Perth. Parking is available from one of several City of Perth carparks located along Murray Street, as well as in bays on Murray Street itself.

Find your way there with Google Maps. (http://bit.ly/EmersonBar)