What Is VPN Port Forwarding and How To Get VPN with Port Forwarding?

You may have heard about VPN port forwarding when you search online for ways to improve your gaming experience. Port forwarding may have been suggested too when you had trouble connecting to the internet while playing online games or using chat applications inside a VPN network. Port forwarding allows to connect internal devices to the internet and has the ability to speed up the communication between two machines because the computer signal finds its way to the host device actively. 

VPN with port forwarding can help users:

  • To download torrents
  • Connect to network devices like security cameras
  • Play online games and host game servers
  • Host video chats
  • Set up a home server and access it remotely from anywhere in the world

What is VPN Port Forwarding?

Port forwarding is the process of rerouting incoming connections from the internet to a specific IP address and port. Port forwarding is also referred to as port mapping and is primarily useful when you want to access a computer or any device remotely. This computer, however, should be connected to the internet in order to make port forwarding possible.

All connection requests that you send over the internet makes use of IP data packets which contains all the details of your request including the IP address of the source and the destination.

When a router receives the IP packet, it checks the header then sends it to the correct interface and destination as indicated in the packet header. When you set up port forwarding, however, you tell your router to open a specific port and reroute traffic to that port.

Most VPN services do not set port forwarding by default as a method to shield users from unsafe incoming connections. This adds a necessary layer of protection. However, the drawback is that it prevents incoming connections that users might want to allow. Like torrenting, online gaming, remote desktop, etc.

 

VPN Port Forwarding

VPN with port forwarding can be unsafe to use because of open ports which can be used by malicious individuals to tap into a user’s operating system

When you port forward through a VPN NAT firewall, a port is left open. This gives hackers the chance to get in, but only when there are programs listening on the open port.  For instance, if you setup port forwarding on BitTorrent and your torrent client is listening on an open port, a hacker may get in. In this scenario, the hackers can’t do a lot of damage since they are only on the Torrent client.

VPN with Port Forwarding Security Issues

The major problem is when a port is opened to allow remote access to your computer. If a hacker gets hold of this open port, there’s no stopping them from doing something harmful. It is best to avoid this from happening even when the connections are still heavily encrypted by the VPN that allows port forwarding.

There are also instances when it is the attacker who uses port forwarding to expose the real IP addresses of VPN users. Even those who didn’t set up port forwarding can fall victim to this, as disclosed by Perfect Privacy in 2015. This was dubbed as “Port Fail”, but providers of VPN with port forwarding easily solved this by setting up different incoming and outgoing IP addresses on their servers.

VPN Port Forwarding for Torrenting

Most VPN providers use NAT firewall as a way to protect users from unsafe incoming connections. This adds another layer of security, which is very helpful. However, the disadvantage of NAT firewall is that it also blocks some incoming connections that users want to allow. This is especially true when torrenting because users are required to leave their BitTorrent client open for any incoming connection so that anyone can download the files. This is called seeding.

Seeding is the process of allowing other torrent users to connect to another user’s BitTorrent client and download files. Let’s put it this way: seeding keeps the torrent world alive. When nobody is seeding, no files will be available for downloading. The ideal situation should be that users seed more than they download. Also, the more users seed, the faster their downloads will be.

However, under VPN a NAT firewall makes it impossible for other people to initiate new connections with your Torrent client. This is where VPN port forwarding comes in. With port forwarding, you can tell your router to allow an incoming connection on a certain port, making it possible for other users to connect to your BitTorrent client even when there is a NAT firewall.

Also Read How To Hide Torrenting From Your ISP?

Advantages of VPN with Port Forwarding

Port forwarding is indeed very helpful as it allows you to access computers remotely, saving you the hassle of having to go to your office to check your files. This works the same way if you want to access your home computer. It’s a more common use, however, is while gaming

Here are some of the uses of VPN port forwarding:

  • To speed up VPN P2P file sharing such as in torrent clients.
  • Connect DVRs, game consoles, and security cameras to the internet.
  • Setting up a server at a user’s home, such as Minecraft or Teamviewer.
  • Finding a user’s router on your network.
  • Testing ports on a user’s network.
  • Recover lost router passwords.
  • Share access to your website/FTP or any other service.
  • Setup an online game server to play with friends by allowing them to join a user’s gaming server.
  • Visit restricted websites from anywhere on Earth.
  • Connect with hosting servers through a firewall at the datacenter level.
  • Improve resistance against DDoS Attacks.
  • Set up Remote Access (RDP).
  • Access private networked applications behind NAT for remote access.
  • Connect with Fantasy Grounds from various routers.
  • Synology NAS.
  • Plex.
  • To improve network connection speed when gaming, streaming videos, and other online activities that require a lot of bandwidth.

Most of these purposes, however, can be achieved even without setting up port forwarding. If you want to connect your home security camera to the internet, for instance, you can do so without using port forwarding. All you need is a static IP address and some DVR and router configuration.

Setting Up Port Forwarding on a Router

You can now start to configure port forwarding on your device. Follow the steps below:

1. Type the Default Gateway on a web browser and press Enter.

2. Login to your router’s interface by entering your login details. The default username and password are usually on a sticker on the router’s manual. Alternatively, you can look for the login details on the Port Forwarding site.

3. Once inside the router’s interface, look for a menu, tab, or category that’s named something like “Applications and Gaming”, “Port Forwarding” or “NAT/QoS.

4. Enter all the ports you want to open under Internal and External or enter a range of ports on the Start and End fields. The common ports are 6881–6887 for BitTorrent clients, 19132 for Minecraft and 3724 for World of Warcraft. Otherwise, you can check out this list of ports.

5. Choose the Protocol which can be TCP, UDP, or both.

6. Enter the static IP address

7. Select Enable if you see it on the window. You can enter a name under Application, then save the changes.

VPN that Allows Port Forwarding

You can also setup port forwarding using a VPN, and in this case, the port number and the local IP address will be added in the VPN server. So whenever a request comes to the VPN server, the server routes it to the specified device through the specified port.

LimeVPN is one of the few providers that allow VPN port forwarding. Port forwarding is a feature that has a lot of uses, but it is not without security issues. If you want to setup VPN port forwarding, we offer this feature for clients on LimeVPN Pro package that costs from $11 per month, you just have to contact us so we can help you out.

A Complete gamer and a Tech Geek. Brings out all her thoughts and love in writing blogs on IOT, software, technology etc