Accessing OpenVPN client by name

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Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2008 7:40 am

Post by jhurshman » Thu Nov 13, 2008 7:48 am
Hello all,

I am a new user of Viscosity and trying to figure out the following problem:

I use Viscosity to connect to the VPN at work. When I am connected to the VPN, I cannot find my own machine by machine name. So before I connect, nslookup mymachinename or accessing http://mymachinename works fine, and afterward, it fails. It's correctly using the DNS server at work, but apparently it has no knowledge of my presence.

I think I can use the alternate DNS approach to enable myself to keep using my old DNS servers as well as the VPN ones, but people from work need to access my machine too, and it's a pain to have to do it by IP address instead of name.

I am the only Mac user at work, and allegedly, the Windows machines using OpenVPN do not have the problem I'm describing. Since the network admins here are not extremely Mac-savvy, I feel I need to help them figure this out if it's going to happen at all. I am not sure whether this is something the OpenVPN server has to take care of, or if there's something the client is supposed to do to register itself with the server.

Any pointers are appreciated.

- Jonathan


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Post by James » Thu Nov 13, 2008 5:35 pm
Hi Jonathan,

If you run the command "scutil --dns" in the Terminal, what domain/s does it have listed? Can you nslookup your machine using the name and domain together (e.g. What about mymachine.local?

You'll probably need to ask your server admins how it works for the Windows clients. If they only use a WINS server for identifying machines, it becomes a little difficult. You could try going to Apple Menu->System Preferences->Network->Select Connection->Advanced->WINS tab and set the company WINS server there. However it may only allow you to nslookup the Windows computers.

The best way of doing it would be to get the tech guys to set up the DHCP server to always give you the same IP address (assuming it is a TAP interface), and associate a DNS entry with this.

James Bekkema
Viscosity Developer

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