Kusat header B

VPN Connectivity via Satellite

To select the best solution for your organization when a VPN connection is required, it's important to understand how satellite networks operate in conjunction with VPN traffic and what solutions are at your disposal.

Network Latency

Besides bandwidth, one of the characteristic of any network is latency. Latency is the time it takes for a request to go full circle, that is, go from your computer to a destination server and back to you.

You want latency to be as low and as consistent as possible. With DSL, Cable or Fiber links, a latency of 50ms is typical. With satellite, the minimum latency revolves around 550ms, because internet packets must travel over 144,000Km to go full circle.

Add network overhead and other factors, latency on our iDirect platform will range between 600ms and 800ms. Other V-Sat providers often break the 1000ms (1 second) barrier and are very inconsistent, which is detrimental to the performance of your applications.

Regular Internet Traffic

To reduce the impression of latency, iDirect employs caching techniques to speed up the delivery of Web pages. Other services such as E-mail and FTP are not affected by latency because they can operate in the background.

Encrypted Traffic

Encrypted traffic, such VPN tunnels, can not benefit from caching techniques, because their packets can not be read by the iDirect platform. This means that the network will appear slower when working with a VPN tunnel. For occasional VPN users, this may not be an issue, but if you need to be permanently connected to a VPN, this can become frustrating.

Standard VPN solution

Until now, the only solution to this problem was to use a proprietary VPN router able to partially optimize VPN traffic over satellite.

The advantage of this solution is that is establishes a point-to-point VPN tunnel between your organization's data center and your remote location.

The main drawbacks of this solution are:

  • Acceleration is only partial and VPN traffic is still slower than regular traffic
  • Unable to take advantage iDirect's embedded acceleration protocols
  • Requires 2 routers: one at the data center and one at the remote location

Hosted VPN solution

Our solution to VPN slowdown via satellite is to use the platform's built-in encryption capabilities and co-locate your VPN router at the Satellite Uplink. Optional 256-bit AES encryption can be added if you require US Government grade encryption.

Advantages of this solution include:

  • Traffic is protected with a standard VPN tunnel between the client's HQ and the teleport
  • VPN traffic over satellite achieves the same performance as regular traffic
  • Traffic encryption is transparent to the end users
  • Remote sites are placed in a VLAN for added security
  • No need for a third-party VPN router at the data center
  • Multiple satellite locations can be served by the same VPN tunnel

For pricing information concerning our Hosted VPN solution, please refer to our co-location page.