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Working on a Smartlink-Less VPN solution that is trivial to install...

W1VE Member, Unconfirmed
Hello All,

Tailscale is a an industrial-grade VPN that is trivial to install for the end user. It does not mess with your DNS or do anything bad to the client network. It also has the ability to advertise and route local networks... If your Station LAN is 192.168.73.x, you can advertise that and every client on the VPN will be allowed to access anything on the 192.168.73.x network. It's awesome.

TailScale, however, does not pass UDP broadcast packets, and therefore clients cannot discover the radios. Well, I wrote a utility that receives the broadcast packets and resends them as directed packets to the IP of your choice. You'd run it on the station side, and it allows you to add as many Directed IP clients as you'd like.

I thought, once I know the radio is there, that I could connect. When I do this across the WAN, and I start SmartSDR, it immediately connects to the radio as if it's local. However,
I don't seem to get the streaming data. The radio interface comes up, but no radio per se. I would presume the streaming port is sent by the radio. What am I missing here?


Gerry W1VE


  • Alan
    Alan Member ✭✭✭✭

    I tried the same, also.

    The Radio commands are TCP.

    The panadapter, waterfall, and audio are VITA49 via UDP. There-in lies the problem.

    Alan. WA9WUD

  • Geoff AB6BT
    Geoff AB6BT Member ✭✭✭

    Have you tried ZeroTier?

  • KD0RC
    KD0RC Broomfield, COMember, Super Elmer Moderator

    Hi Gerry, I have had great luck with SoftEther. It is just like being on the LAN when operating remotely. I use SmartSDR with SmartLink, and everything else on SoftEther.

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin

    In order to get a VPN to work as you wish, your VPN Client will need to be on the same subnet as the radio and pass layer 2 UDP/Vita49 traffic to see the radio 'advertisements'.

    Softether does this very well. Many of us have used PI's as the VPN server on the radio end of the link. For me, long before SmartLink, I would run another Softether PI in a client mode with a LAN cable connected to the back of the Maestro and a 2nd NIC card on the PI connected to the local LAN. It worked like a dream as well.

    The initial setup did require some network understanding skills to get the bridge working on the Maestro end.

    If you use a VPN connection, it uses more bandwidth than a SmartLink connection.


  • BH4AAD
    BH4AAD Member ✭✭
    edited May 2022

    I have been using ASUS router to open an OpenVPN server, and then install an ASUS router to connect OpenVPN in another home. In this way, both my smartsdr and Maestro can work as if they were local, and they are very stable. It has been running stably for 2 years.

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