5G + Public IP with OpenVPN

I’ve done a proof of concept with SSH tunneling to add a public IP to my 5G home broadband connection, it works for my garage-hosted blogs but it’s not a complete solution. Since I still have free credit in my personal Google Cloud account, I decided to make an improvement with OpenVPN. The diagram looks like:

        [CloudFlare] 
             |
            HTTP
             |
     [VM:35.197.x.x:80]
             |
       [iptables DNAT]
             |
      [OpenVPN tunnel]
             |
[local server tun0 interface: 10.8.0.51:80]

Following an outstanding tutorial on DigitalOcean I set up an OpenVPN server on Debian 10 running in a Google Cloud Compute instance. There’s a few more thing to do for my case.

First I needed to add port forwarding from the public interface of the OpenVPN server to home server’s tunnel interface. Here’s my ufw configuration file:

# this is /etc/ufw/before.rules
# START OPENVPN RULES
# NAT table rules
*nat
:PREROUTING ACCEPT [0:0]
# port forwarding to home server
-A PREROUTING -i eth0 -p tcp -d <public ip> --dport 80 -j DNAT --to 10.8.0.51:80

:POSTROUTING ACCEPT [0:0] 
# Allow traffic from OpenVPN client to eth0, ie. internet access
-A POSTROUTING -s 10.8.0.0/8 -o eth0 -j MASQUERADE
COMMIT
# END OPENVPN RULES

Make sure to restart ufw after this.

Then in my home server, the OpenVPN client can be configured to run as a service:

# this is /etc/systemd/system/vpnclient.service
[Unit]
Description=Setup an openvpn tunnel to kite server
After=network.target

[Service]
ExecStart=/usr/sbin/openvpn --config /etc/openvpn/client1.conf
RestartSec=5
Restart=always

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

To enable it and start immediately:

sudo systemctl daemon-reload
sudo systemctl enable vpnclient
sudo systemctl start vpnclient

Also I need my home server to have a fixed IP for its tun0 network interface, so the nginx server can proxy traffic to this IP reliably. I followed this guide, except it suggested to do client-config-dir on both server and client sides but I only did on the server side and it worked for me:

# this is /etc/openvpn/server.conf
# uncomment the following line
client-config-dir ccd

# this is /etc/openvpn/ccd/client1
ifconfig-push 10.8.0.51 255.255.255.255

After this the OpenVPN server on the VM needs to be restarted:

sudo systemctl restart [email protected]

Reload the nginx server and it should be working. I tested it with curl -H "Host: raynix.info" 35.197.x.x and the request hit my home server.

🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *