How to Identify and Set VPN Protocols in Mac OS X

VPN, Virtual Private Network is a group of computers attached together with the help of a public network, the internet. VPN is used to secure your computer’s connection so that the exchange of data happens safely just between the intended computers.

Depending upon the type of your work, there are different VPNs to suit the requirement. While L2TP, PPTP, and IPSec are well-known, there are some differences between them.

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How to Identify and Set VPN Protocols in Mac OS X

How to Identify VPN on Mac

#1. L2TP (Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol)

It is a simple VPN that does not provide the high rate of encryption or confidentiality. When you are trying to set it, you will be asked to set Configuration, Server address, Account name to authenticate settings.

#2. PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol)

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PPTP comes with an option of choosing Encryption. If you select it, you need to add your Configuration, Server address, Account name along with encryption. This protocol goes with TCP port 1723 and IP port 47 Generic Routing Encapsulating.

#3. IPSec (Internet Protocol Security)

If configured, IPSec authenticates and encrypts each communication session. It is secure, and you can only connect it if you know the password. In Mac, you have to enter server address, account name and password to set it.

Once You Have Identified which Protocol You Have to Install, Here is How to Set up:

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Step #1. Click on “Apple” menu and choose “System Preferences.”

Step #2. Click on “Network.”

Locate Network on Mac OS X

Step #3. From the bottom of network connection service, press [+].

Step #4. A new interface window will pop up; select “VPN.

Select VPN on Mac OS X

Step #5. In the VPN-type pop-up menu, select the kind of VPN connection you want to establish, depending on your network.

Select VPN Type on Mac OS X

Step #6. Give a name to the service in the box next to “VPN Host name.

Step #7. Now, type the server address, account name and other details for your VPN connection.

Step #8. Press “Authentication settings” and give the authentication information as provided by the network administrator.

Step #9. Press “OK” and then hit “Connect.”

You’ve set up your VPN.

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Jignesh Padhiyar
Jignesh Padhiyar is the founder of who has a keen eye for news, rumors and all the unusual stuff that happens around iPhone and iPad.


  1. Jignesh in you blog you define the manual method of how to setup VPN on MAC but did not talk about the automatic method. I thought the automatic is quite easy and quick. I found the automatic method of VPN Setup on MAC at VpnRanks a few days before and that work greatly for me and my friends.

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