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Features you'd like to see in a VPN service?
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Features you'd like to see in a VPN service?

MannDudeMannDude Member, Provider

So, we already run a small no-logging VPN service that blocks "BS" (ads, trackers and known malicious stuff) with DNS over Tor. Those who use it seem happy but I put it out of stock some months ago as it began to become quite a headache to manage properly as most aspects of it is done manually still.

So, while working on an update to the VPN service, I've decided some new features need to be implemented. While we can't really compete with dozens of locations and fancy smancy apps what we can do is offer unique features, some of which are already being tested.

What other features / use cases would you like to see supported?

Right now, the roadmap is to:

  • Improve our blocklists. I still come across some false positives for things / tools we all use, like GeoDNS / IP lookup websites and what not.
  • Add support for handshake domains.
  • Add support for I2P network sites (both b32 and .i2p addresses)
  • Add support for Yggdrasil Network sites (via the Yggdrasil IPv6 address)
  • Add support for Tor Onion sites
  • May add additional locations to choose from.
  • WireGuard, of course. While we don't officially offer it just yet some users are already using it (but without the features above)

Some of this stuff is already packaged in on on a dev setup that is being tested out, but it'll still be quite some time before anything would be offered publicly as we need to figure out how best manage this for use under a wider audience.

The idea behind our VPN service is to allow browsing and accessing content on the clearnet as well as alternative networks, but we also get random requests if the VPN can be used for torrenting, or for this, or for that, etc. So, what sort of features would you like to see, what sort of things would you like to see it support?

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Comments

  • Cheap SOCKS5 rotating pool of IPs, really, even if it's not exactly related to VPNs. IPs can be DC ones, it doesn't really matter, but try and make sure they don't end up on DNSBLs, etc. Oh, and cost... gotta be cheap.

  • Better quality of apps.

  • An option that enabled or disables ad block, some websites block users if they have ad block enabled

    Thanked by 1kkrajk
  • @MannDude said: Add support for handshake domains.

    Not only handshake domain but all available alternative root.

  • zhizhi Member

    Add support for handshake domains.
    Add support for Netflix.

  • AXYZEAXYZE Member
    edited November 21

    Split tunneling & IPv6 are not common, but very important for me. Most providers completly block IPv6.

    Hide.me adds IPv6 connectivity if you dont have it (helpful for cheap IPv6-only providers like Scaleway or EUserv)
    Windscribe has very easy GUI with split tunneling so I dont need to mess up ping when I'm gaming, but there's no profiles. Maybe have option in GUI with some profiles for browsers, games, torrent clients and user inclusions/exceptions for split tunneling? Or have option to choose currently running apps instead of browsing on my whole computer trying to figure out where Chrome etc. is xD

    Firewall which would ask you if you want to "Send traffic via VPN", "without VPN" or "block access" when new app wants to connect to internet would be just top-tier, I never saw VPN provider with such feature and it would be amazing.

  • Port forwarding, to allow protocols like torrents and similar to accept incoming connections without exposing the origin, would be great. The specific port wouldn't matter, just a randomised few assigned to a user that they put in their application.

    This can also be used for game servers and the like, protecting the location of the origin server and allowing escape from NATs.

    Honestly I just love the flexibility of a port forward and I wish more providers supported them. Currently using Mullvad with great success, but would like to see healthy competition.

    Thanked by 1kkrajk
  • MannDudeMannDude Member, Provider

    Thanks for the responses.

    Our stance is that you should really just use the official apps / software created and maintained by those who maintain the protocol in question. OpenVPN and WireGuard's official mobile apps and desktop software work fine.

    We just provide you with the configuration file / QR code required to connect. I'm not confident that building a new app / software specifically for this is achievable at this time.

    Regarding features that aren't requiring a full on app / software to be coded, maintained, and supported: I'll certainly look further into what is required to package some of that in.

    This is all months away but I'm pretty determined to be able to bring something worthwhile to the table.

  • deankdeank Member, Troll

    I'd like an ability to spy on other VPN users.

    They (users) don't have to know.

  • Port forwarding would be great feature (IPv6-only is fine), and location on Asia.

  • SirFoxySirFoxy Member
    edited November 22

    Cash to PO like Mullvad would be interesting.

  • MannDudeMannDude Member, Provider

    @SirFoxy said: Cash to PO like Mullvad would be interesting.

    Already accept it, but for larger orders or annual payments. Will also accept gold/silver and really about anything else of value and have been in / out of talks with a gift card processor but the fees aren't very attractive.

    Regarding cash: Takes time to go to the PO then to a bank to confirm the money is real though which is likely why most providers don't accept cash. And in our case, my local bank isn't our business bank so takes even more time to transfer funds so it's a bit of a pain both in terms of collecting and in accounting unless it's for an amount that is worthwhile.

  • @MannDude said:

    @SirFoxy said: Cash to PO like Mullvad would be interesting.

    Already accept it, but for larger orders or annual payments. Will also accept gold/silver and really about anything else of value and have been in / out of talks with a gift card processor but the fees aren't very attractive.

    Regarding cash: Takes time to go to the PO then to a bank to confirm the money is real though which is likely why most providers don't accept cash. And in our case, my local bank isn't our business bank so takes even more time to transfer funds so it's a bit of a pain both in terms of collecting and in accounting unless it's for an amount that is worthwhile.

    One could acquire a counterfeit pen that would determine 99% of fakes & keep it under their bed 😉

  • @Erisa said:
    Port forwarding, to allow protocols like torrents and similar to accept incoming connections without exposing the origin, would be great. The specific port wouldn't matter, just a randomised few assigned to a user that they put in their application.

    This can also be used for game servers and the like, protecting the location of the origin server and allowing escape from NATs.

    Honestly I just love the flexibility of a port forward and I wish more providers supported them. Currently using Mullvad with great success, but would like to see healthy competition.

    Just keep in mind that means less privacy since your traffic is mapped to a specific port.

    Thanked by 1MannDude
  • @deank said:
    I'd like an ability to spy on other VPN users.

    They (users) don't have to know.

    You're looking for the thread asking for investors.

  • HTTPS proxy, as it makes it very easy to proxy just a few apps (easier than trying to configure split routing).

    Port forwarding. AirVPN is the only provider I've seen with a good implementation - you can pick your own ports, up to 20 of them.

  • @TimboJones said: Just keep in mind that means less privacy since your traffic is mapped to a specific port.

    This is true, but for many its a fine trade-off for what they want to do. Having choice is great.

  • @Daniel15 said:
    HTTPS proxy, as it makes it very easy to proxy just a few apps (easier than trying to configure split routing).

    Port forwarding. AirVPN is the only provider I've seen with a good implementation - you can pick your own ports, up to 20 of them.

    https proxy market is too crowded, you can scan and get 100 https proxies in a minute.

  • KermEdKermEd Member
    edited November 22

    HTTP & HTTPS proxy
    Static IP
    Easy configuration options for old routers (I.e. not just openvpn profiles)

    The why is selfish, but I need to do this to provision development consoles (i.e. PS5 dev kits, Nintendo, and Xbox kits). They typically require a static IP specified by us (it takes a week or two of downtime if it changes, as companies like Sony manually whitelist IPS), and most console dev kits can only support proxy at best on the devices (PS5 for example). Dev studios can also use cheap routers for their team as an alternative to just relying on the proxy, and although there are specific OpenVPN ones it’s a lot easier to not need to worry about that specifically - proxy would be more ideal though as I don’t want to route my 1 Gbps up & down through some far off VPS for all traffic.

    Right now for a corporate static IP (not for the purpose of being anonymous but for IP white listing for companies) we can only use a very small number of companies.

  • @SirFoxy said:

    @Daniel15 said:
    HTTPS proxy, as it makes it very easy to proxy just a few apps (easier than trying to configure split routing).

    Port forwarding. AirVPN is the only provider I've seen with a good implementation - you can pick your own ports, up to 20 of them.

    https proxy market is too crowded, you can scan and get 100 https proxies in a minute.

    I mean a good, reliable, no-log proxy, not sketchy unreliable public proxies. NordVPN have HTTPS proxies for example.

  • @Daniel15 said:

    @SirFoxy said:

    @Daniel15 said:
    HTTPS proxy, as it makes it very easy to proxy just a few apps (easier than trying to configure split routing).

    Port forwarding. AirVPN is the only provider I've seen with a good implementation - you can pick your own ports, up to 20 of them.

    https proxy market is too crowded, you can scan and get 100 https proxies in a minute.

    I mean a good, reliable, no-log proxy, not sketchy unreliable public proxies. NordVPN have HTTPS proxies for example.

    NordVPN proxies aren't sketchy?

  • @SirFoxy said:

    @Daniel15 said:

    @SirFoxy said:

    @Daniel15 said:
    HTTPS proxy, as it makes it very easy to proxy just a few apps (easier than trying to configure split routing).

    Port forwarding. AirVPN is the only provider I've seen with a good implementation - you can pick your own ports, up to 20 of them.

    https proxy market is too crowded, you can scan and get 100 https proxies in a minute.

    I mean a good, reliable, no-log proxy, not sketchy unreliable public proxies. NordVPN have HTTPS proxies for example.

    NordVPN proxies aren't sketchy?

    No sketchier than their regular VPN servers. I meant sketchy in the sense than public proxies will almost always log traffic going through them.

  • KermEdKermEd Member
    edited November 22

    @SirFoxy said:
    https proxy market is too crowded, you can scan and get 100 https proxies in a minute.

    Yet there are people here willing to pay for the service. Hmm I wonder what that means.

    NordVPN proxies aren't sketchy?

    I disagree, NordVPN is extremely sketchy. But more importantly for me doesn't have a static IP anymore.

  • I would like to see rigorous security audits by the third party security firms every 6 months. Transparency report regarding legal demands every month. And at least 300 Mbps dedicated connection at chosen location. Also, hyper exotic locations such as Antarctica would be cherry on top.

    Thanked by 1that_guy
  • @ferefient said: Cheap SOCKS5 rotating pool of IPs

    The problem with SOCKS5 is that the connection is not encrypted, which defeats the purpose somewhat as your ISP can still see which hosts you're connecting to along with any data that's not encrypted at a higher layer (eg HTTPS will still be fine, but HTTP traffic will be unencrypted).

  • @KermEd said:
    HTTP & HTTPS proxy
    Static IP
    Easy configuration options for old routers (I.e. not just openvpn profiles)

    The why is selfish, but I need to do this to provision development consoles (i.e. PS5 dev kits, Nintendo, and Xbox kits). They typically require a static IP specified by us (it takes a week or two of downtime if it changes, as companies like Sony manually whitelist IPS), and most console dev kits can only support proxy at best on the devices (PS5 for example). Dev studios can also use cheap routers for their team as an alternative to just relying on the proxy, and although there are specific OpenVPN ones it’s a lot easier to not need to worry about that specifically - proxy would be more ideal though as I don’t want to route my 1 Gbps up & down through some far off VPS for all traffic.

    Right now for a corporate static IP (not for the purpose of being anonymous but for IP white listing for companies) we can only use a very small number of companies.

    Why aren't you running your own proxy through your own network?

  • @TimboJones said:
    Why aren't you running your own proxy through your own network?

    Because I don’t need a proxy.

  • @KermEd said:

    @TimboJones said:
    Why aren't you running your own proxy through your own network?

    Because I don’t need a proxy.

    What? You just described how you use other services to do what you can do and also have advantage of controlling the IP instead of a provider potentially changing it on you. Plus, it protects your intellectual IP better as well.

  • KermEdKermEd Member
    edited November 24

    @TimboJones said:

    What? You just described how you use other services to do what you can do and also have advantage of controlling the IP instead of a provider potentially changing it on you. Plus, it protects your intellectual IP better as well.

    I think you are confusing what I have and am able to do, with what I would like to see a VPN do for me and where I see a large opportunity for console game developers trying to find a VPN service.

    Also - IP doesn't come into play here. The only thing going through that VPN is (ideally) the registration packets for the consoles.

    It isn't about what an individual can setup in their basement but a scalable solution for studios. There is a problem, a company is already profiting off it but provides a limited service. My advice is to capitalize on it and take it further.

    Some cities, where I am for example, are controlled by only 2 telecoms. So to get a static IP, you need to pay for an enhanced business service at 4x the cost (~150/m) but it only has about a fraction of the speed (25 up and down instead of 1,000). So we need to pay a VPN for a static IP or pay 150/m per team member and lose our high speed. Getting static IP's that are easy to configure for 250+ employees using consoles with varying network capabilities operating in 5 countries is not easy. My advice is to add a few features to make it easy.

    There are a thousand ways to solve this problem. But a VPN that does it for us would just be a lot easier. Right now we all use a different VPN with less configuration options that I can 'make work'. But that wasn't the question - the question is what would I like to see in a VPN. I've answered. The question was never 'Does TimboJones think I should run my own proxy'.

  • Exotic locations - such as microstates like San Marino, could be an nice addition as it could be useful - probably less geo-related restrictions

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