Most modern business level routers/firewalls offer a several options for VPN functionality. Site to site IPSEC VPNs (for VPNs between routers) and SSL VPNs (for computer to router VPNs). SSL VPNs aren’t always very convenient to use, and depending on the computer, browser, etc… can have hoops to jump through.

Global VPN Client

Enter Sonicwall’s Global VPN. It is basically a small VPN program that is downloaded to the PC you would like to connect to the network. First you have to configure the VPN on the sonicwall itself – very easily done with their VPN wizard or even manually isn’t too difficult. After that you fire up the global VPN software on your PC (sorry, Windows only at the moment) and enter all the relevant information (IP address, preshared key, username/password) and it creates a virtual network adaptor and gets you up and running.

Easily Pre-Configure Sonicwall Global Virtual Private Network (VPN) Client

The sonicwall global VPN can also save a preset file, which can easily be distributed to other computers on a USB drive (or other file transfer method). This makes it easy to set up many computers at once without having to distribute the IP addresses and preshared key to many users (they still need a username and password to log into the VPN of course.

Overall, Sonicwall’s global VPN software isn’t a massive leap forward or the best thing to happen since sliced bread, but I have definitely found it to be a level above standard SSL VPN setups in terms of ease of setup, ease of use, and general reliability. All it takes is a Windows PC and an internet connection, and you are good to go.