Client: OpenVPN GUI v2.5 on Windows 7
Server: OpenVPN 2.4 running on a Raspberry Pi at my home LAN.

My home LAN has several connected hosts each with Samba and shares. When connected to it, over a routed OpenVPN, I can map a network drive on the client to get to the hosts and shares. However, the Network Neighbourhood of my Win7 client is not auto-populated with the LAN hosts.

From reading I understand this is because a routed VPN will not pass IP broadcasts while a bridged VPN will. In bridged mode OpenVPN can route ethernet broadcasts and non-IP protocols such as Windows NetBios which is needed for the auto-discovery (into the Windows clients Network Neighbourhood) of hosts on the remote LAN that the OpenVPN server is also running on.

My Question:
Can anyone propose work arounds to achieve this with a routed OpenVPN?
For instance, since the VPN cannot route Netbios (or Web Services - Discovery) broadcast/multicast packets from the home LAN into the VPN subnet, could a process sit in the routed OpenVPN subnet and query the Samba master browser on the remote LAN to get a list of hosts on the LAN and populate the connected Windows clients Network Neighbourhood that way?

Yes this is likely more trouble than just using a bridged VPN but a routed VPN is more efficient and secure. I would prefer not to have all that broadcast traffic eating up my VPN bandwidth... but I still want that auto-populating Network Neighbourhood!

Any other suggestions welcome?

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.