terça-feira, 29 de dezembro de 2015

Mikrotik - Site to site OpenVPN using Mikrotik RouterOS routers

I recently needed to set up a VPN between two sites using Mikrotik routers.  Whilst I'm reasonably familiar with OpenVPN, I'm a newcomer to Mikrotik routers so I had to do a fair bit of reading up to figure out how to get this to work how I wanted.

I found lots of how-to guides already but none really matched what I wanted to achieve and quite a few seemed pretty out of date, with commands for RouterOS that no longer work.

What I wanted to end up with is something like this:

So fairly standard for a VPN but I was keen that once set up, it just keeps working.  Things at Site A on subnet should be able to access things at Site B on the subnet automatically.  It also needed to survive a reboot of either router.

One big stumbling block I ran into with OpenVPN on Mikrotiks is that they don't support push-route so you can get the VPN server to push routes to the client(s).  So in the end I had to set up static IPs for the VPN to use (on the subnet) and static routes by IP address.

Worth noting that the Mikrotik routers also don't support OpenVPN over UDP but this wasn't an issue for me.

How to set up

Steps are:
  • set up NTP
  • generate certificates
  • set up server
  • set up client
  • add static routes on both ends

Set up NTP

It's important that the time is correct on both routers for the certificates to work.  Ideally they need to be talking to some NTP servers.  
In the web interface or Winbox, go to System & SNTP Client.  Add some NTP servers, if using pool.ntp.org then ensure you add several DNS names:

Generating Certificates

There's several ways of doing this, if you have OpenVPN installed on a "normal" computer (such as a Linux server or desktop) then you can use the Easy-RSA package to generate certificates for you.  There are also websites which will do the job for you.  I used the Mikrotik router itself to do the job.  All the work is done using one router.

Using newer versions of RouterOS (I'm using 6.25 for this), you create certificate templates first and then sign them.  It's possible using the web interface or the Winbox tool (which runs fine with wine) but I used the command line interface because it was quicker.

Generate templates:
/certificate add name=ca-template common-name=myCa key-usage=key-cert-sign,crl-sign
/certificate add name=server-template common-name=server
/certificate add name=client1-template common-name=client1
Change the common-name to something more descriptive if you want.

Then sign the certificates:
/certificate sign ca-template ca-crl-host= name=myCa
/certificate sign ca=myCa server-template name=server
/certificate sign ca=myCa client1-template name=client1
Set CA and server cert as trusted:
/certificate set myCa trusted=yes
/certificate set server trusted=yes
Now export the CA and the client certificate so they can be copied onto the Mikrotik router for Site B:
/certificate export-certificate myCa
/certificate export-certificate client1 export-passphrase=xxxxxxxx
Copy these two files off router A and onto router B, this is easy to do in the web interface or Winbox.

In web interface or Winbox on router B, go to "System" & "Certificates" and import the CA and the client certificate.

Setup the Server

This is all done on router A which is acting as the server.  It doesn't matter which router you use as the server but it should ideally have a static IP address on the Internet facing interface (or at least be using some kind of dynamic DNS service) - the client has to know where to access the server!  The client(s) could be on dynamic IPs.

Create a PPP profile for this VPN:

Note how the static IP addresses to be used for the VPN ( & are defined here.  You can choose whatever IPs you want but they shouldn't clash with any of the subnets already in use at any of the sites you are going to connect on this VPN.

Create a PPP authentication for this client to use:

As well as being used for authentication, it associates the client with the PPP profile you created above so if you have multiple clients, create multiple profiles and multiple authentications linking them together.

Click on the OVPN Server button on the PPP Interfaces tab and enable the OpenVPN server:

Select the "server" certificate, make sure "require client certificate" is chosen.  You can use whatever authentication methods and ciphers you want, just make sure that when you set up a client, you set it to use matching settings.

The last job on the server is to open up the OpenVPN port on the firewall:

Setup the Client

Assuming you have already loaded and imported the CA & client1 certificates, connecting to the OpenVPN server is simple.  

Add a new PPP interface of type OVPN Client:

This should be fairly self-explanatory by now!  Make sure to use the correct username & password as configured for the PPP Profile on the server, choose the correct certificate and make sure the auth method & cipher are compatible with your server settings.
For what I want, I don't want the default route setting because I only want to use the VPN to access devices on the remote network, all other traffic should still go out over the local Internet connection.  So we will add static routes to do this next.

Add Static Routes

By now the VPN is connected and working.  But, site A wants to access devices on the subnet at site B and site B wants to access devices on the subnet at site A.  A static route is needed at each end for this.

At site A, add a new route.  The only required information is the destination address and the gateway to use.  These will be the local network at site B, and the OpenVPN address of site B:

Then at site B, do the same but using the local subnet at site A and the OpenVPN IP address at site A.

Once these are saved they will persist OpenVPN being restarted, Internet connection failures etc... 

The great thing I find with OpenVPN is that once you've got it up and running you can just forget about it and it keeps on working.  It is very good at reconnecting after failures too (such as Internet connection drop outs, router reboots etc...).

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