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Virtual private network (VPN) connections
enable a computer to create a secure, tunneled connection to a
remote host. Often, VPN is used to create a connection across the
Internet to a private LAN. Computers that establish a VPN
connection to a remote LAN can function on the LAN as if they were
connected locally to the network. Therefore, a VPN connection
enables the computer to access shared resources such as folders and
printers and access other servers on the remote network.

It isn’t difficult to create a VPN connection
in Windows 2000 Professional, but you do have a few configuration
questions to sort out. First, Windows supports two VPN protocols,
PPTP and L2TP. The latter offers better security, so you should use
L2TP if the remote VPN server supports it.

You also need to decide which protocols the VPN
connection will use. In most cases, you will only need TCP/IP, but
you might need to add others if you need to access resources on the
remote server or LAN that require the protocol(s).

To create a VPN connection, run the Make New
Connection Wizard in the Network And Dial-Up Connections folder.
Click Next, choose the option Connect To A Private Network Through
The Internet, and then click Next. In the Destination Address page,
enter the IP address or host name of the VPN server that will host
the connection, click Next, and accept the defaults for the rest of
the wizard’s prompts.

Windows opens the connection after it creates
it. Click Properties in the Connect dialog box, and then click the
Networking tab. The drop-down list labeled Type Of VPN Server I Am
Calling lets you choose the VPN protocol to be used. Choose
Automatic to have the client attempt PPTP first, followed by L2TP.
Or, choose either PPTP or L2TP as required by the server.