Using ZeroTier VPN for Remote Access?

Hey,

So I am trying to figure out the most efficient method of setting up remote access for my dad’s Infuse Library that is also FREE. We have tried opening ports and forwarding them with some success, but I have recently been looking into using a VPN instead.

Infuse Share is accessing the movie folder on his local NAS (WD MyCloud EX2). His home network uses one of the newest WiFi-6 Mesh networks from Orbi (Netgear).

There is a free service called ZeroTier that lets you setup your own VPN, and they even have an application that can install directly onto the MyCloud EX2 NAS and an free client apps for his iPhone/iPad/Mac to connect directly thru the VPN whenever he is away from home.

From what I understand, would using a method like ZeroTier keep me from having to open & forward ports?

I want to be sure that this method would only create remote connections between the host NAS and any of the devices that have the VPN client app installed? I also want to be sure that this wouldn’t leave the NAS accessible to just anyone online (I obviously understand that if the VPN company we’re to get hacked, it’s security would be vulnerable).

Has anyone used this VPN or a similar setup? Are there any MyCloud EX2 users that have a better way of accessing your Infuse Library remotely? I would also like to know how slow the performance might be to see if it’s even worth it… (His home network ISP plan is for 300Mbps)

Any guidance is much appreciated!

The Orbi has a VPN service included on the router. That would be the easiest way of you want to go that route.

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Yes I am aware of the Orbi VPN capabilities, but… wouldn’t that complicate my network because I would have to apply a VPN to my dad’s entire home network. So wouldn’t the VPN be affecting all devices and probably slowing down the network as a whole?

Is it possible to set the router VPN to ignore all connections, except for the local NAS’s IP and my dad’s remote client (iOS device) IP?

I dunno it seems like that would take a bunk of customization and would end up being a lot like the port forwarding process which I’m not a huge fan of.

I realize installing a VPN service (like ZeroTier) directly onto the MyCloud NAS might not run as well as installing it on a Router, but… at least if there is any network delays it will only cause issue with the NAS (movie drive) which isn’t a huge deal since he primarily accesses it from home local-LAN. However, if a Router VPN is applying its services to every possible device on the network, than network delays WILL BE A HUGE DEAL since my parents network is large and has at 15-20 devices connected at any given point.

That’s not how VPNs work. You setup the server on the gateway. If you are local to the network you don’t use the VPN. When you leave your network you open up OpenVPN on your iPhone/iPad, hit connect, and bam you have access to almost everything on your local network remotely. They only items that won’t work are anything that require multicast (Sonos, airplay, AirPrint).

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Ahh… you are talking about an inbound VPN (Remote/Client > VPN > Home), I’m so used to using outbound VPNs (Home/Client > VPN > internet), that I automatically assumed that installing a VPN service on my router would most likely cover both inbound & outbound, so I was worried the outbound slowing down the entire home network.

Yes inbound only. The Orbi as a server and not a client.

If the Orbi is the rbk50/53 then you can also install voxels third party firmware and use WireGuard as the VPN server to reduce some of the overhead present with other other VPN services.