Problems with CactusVPN provider (both OpenVPN and PPTP)


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    Christopher Clancy

    This is EXACTLY why I don't use Portal as my primary router. I think the hardware is fantastic, but the firmware definitely needs work.

    What I did instead was get a Linksys wrt1200ac which is connected directly to my cable modem. I bought it on Amazon as a refurb for $50, and flashed it with a custom version of OpenWRT provided by my VPN provider. Now, anything connected to the Linksys is on the VPN, unless I want to exclude it, via the router's web interface.

    Here's where it gets interesting. Once the Linksys was connected and configured, I turned off its wireless radios and removed the antennas. So now the Linksys is just a wired VPN router. My Portal router is in bridge mode "aka, AP mode" so it's basically just a wireless access point connected to the Linksys with an ethernet cable. I can now see and connect to the Linksys by its SSID (through the Portal). And man! Is it FAST! Even with the VPN enabled, I'm getting double the speed I was getting with my sixth generation Airport Extreme.

    I'm also getting almost the same speeds in every part of my house, which is great because I'm completely surrounded by wifi networks. The Airport Extreme can't touch the Portal/Linksys setup in terms of coverage or speed. Both devices together were $200 (just $20 more than Airport Extreme).

    I may eventually retire the Linksys, but for now it's THE easiest way to get reliable, secure VPN for my all of my devices, all of the time. Paired with the Portal it's an excellent solution, and because VPN speeds depend on having a fast processor in your router, I can also upgrade to a faster Linksys in the future and still take advantage of the Portal's unique wireless capabilities.

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