L2TP / IPSEC VPN on Ubuntu 16.04

So for work, we use an LT2P IPSEC vpn which works simple and easily with both Android and Windows 10. Unfortunately as many people likely know (after a few google searches it seems) the client for this is pretty crap in Ubuntu 16.04.

The two main packages for this is strongswan and xl2tpd. There is apparently some network manager plugins that will allow you to configure a VPN connection directly where you would setup a Wi-Fi or LAN connection using a GUI, but unfortunately, these don’t allow me to enter the correct information to use the VPN the way we have it setup.

Our setup uses a shared PSK, and a username and password.


Turning a netgear r7000 into an augmented traffic control router

At work we’re developing apps that are being used in developing countries and half of the office works out of Vancouver where our networks are very good. Unfortunately, this means that we often don’t think about user experience problems and bugs that occur only when the app is operating with a poor quality connection.

To combat this, we are taking motivation from Facebook, which offers “2G Tuesdays” to employees so they can experience what it’s like for people in other parts of the world. Facebook also released a tool call Augmented Traffic Control which allows you to simulate these types of conditions with your own equipment.

At our office, we’d like to have a dedicated device that provides this – and I had an old netgear R7000 router at home. Here’s a bit of a guide on how to get everything up and running.