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I am a beginner to computer networking. Help me understand how the following scenario can be modelled.

A company has three employees,say , X, Y and Z. X sits in New York, Y sits in California and Z sits in London. Let's say the a database server is set up in X's home(what happens if X has only a normal DSL modem ?) . How do we make sure that ONLY Y and Z sitting in different parts of the world access the database at X's home.

What is the minimum infrastructure needed to set up this thing ? What are the technical details that go into this ? Is having an internet connection just enough ?

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first thing to check for is, whether ur IP is publicly visible to outsiders??? That depends on ur ISP, and partly on ur modem/router, which should have a DMZ port to connect... – Vineet Menon Dec 12 '11 at 7:28

This is a very complex question with many possible answers. However, a VPN would probably work best for this case. This will allow for Y and Z to access the database server while restricting access to the rest of the world. There may be performance issues with running a VPN over a consumer DSL line as the upload speed on these lines it quite slow. You many want to have a look at openVPN as it is a leader in the opensource VPN area.

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VPN is the easy way to go and is indeed all you will need, as Lamar has stated here. I must also echo his warning that running such a setup over a consumer DSL line is not a good idea. It will be very, very, VERY slow, and may, in some cases, go against the user agreement of the DSL contract. Investigate having a business level connection installed at the location with a good upload speed to help make this setup more usable. – music2myear Dec 12 '11 at 15:09
Also... you could have some Name resolution issues across the VPN. I am the Junior Admin at my shop and my Senior Admin has some pretty bad ass mojo and we STILL have issues with WINS across the VPN so just be aware you might have to make some tweaks. – OG Chuck Low Dec 12 '11 at 23:05

The easiest way to solve this is to create a Hub - Spoke VPN network. You can easily do this using Logmein Hamachi ( It is almost a zero config and very easy to do.

You will set your database server as the Hub. You will set each client as the spoke. The spokes cannot see other spokes. The hub can see all spokes. The spoke can see the hub.

What this will do is create a virtual network adapter on all machines and initiate an outgoing request to the Hamachi servers. Once it does, it will gather the network information and then create a direct tunnel to the hub and spokes. Traffic is encrypted.

Once you have everything configured, you'll be able to have your Y and Z machines access the X server remotely. The beauty of this is since Hamachi initiates an outgoing request first to establish communications, there is no need to open up and ports on your firewall/router. This will also maintain the security of your network.

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Hamachi is very easy to use and is free for most setups. – music2myear Dec 12 '11 at 15:09

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