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VPN Reconnect

Updated: November 11, 2009

Applies To: Windows Server 2008 R2

DirectAccess can replace the VPN as the preferred remote access method for many organizations. However, some organizations will continue to use VPNs side-by-side with DirectAccess. Therefore, Microsoft is improving VPN usability in Windows 7 with VPN Reconnect.

VPN Reconnect uses IKEv2 technology to provide seamless and consistent VPN connectivity, automatically re-establishing a VPN when users temporarily lose their Internet connections. Users who connect using wireless mobile broadband will benefit most from this capability.

For example, consider a user traveling to work on a train. To make the most out of her time, she uses a wireless mobile broadband card to connect to the Internet and then establishes a VPN connection to her company’s network. As the train passes through a tunnel, she loses her Internet connection. Once outside of the tunnel, the wireless mobile broadband card automatically reconnects to the Internet. However, with earlier versions of Windows, the VPN does not reconnect, and she needs to repeat the multi-step process of connecting to the VPN. This can quickly become time consuming for mobile users with intermittent connectivity.

With VPN Reconnect, Windows 7 automatically re-establishes active VPN connections when Internet connectivity re-establishes. While the re-connection might take several seconds, it is completely transparent to users, who are more likely to stay connected to a VPN and get more use out of internal network resources.

For more information about VPN Reconnect, see Remote Access Step-by-Step Guide: Deploying Remote Access with VPN Reconnect.

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