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Connecting remote areas via VPN

I have customers in extremely remote areas such as New Iberia, La. and Arkansas Pass, Texas, among other locations in the Southwest United States. I would like to give them access to the host computer located in Miami. Cost, of course, is a major factor. What options are there for setting up a VPN?
Standard dial access is the best way to accomplish this. Setup a remote access server (RAS) and use modem pooling to share equipment and phone lines. This can be setup to disconnect users after a predetermined amount of time to save on dial connection charges. Of course dialing in from out-of-state will have long distance charges, which can add up quickly. The most cost effective way to accomplish this is using the Internet. Set up your host with an IP address and have users connect to it through the Internet. These types of environments can be set up today which extremely adequate security to prevent intruders from accessing you host. This would provide cheapest solution, because users would be making local calls to an ISP, instead of dialing into Miami.
This was last published in June 2001

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