tinc is an open source, free and multiplatform command-line software implemented in C and designed from the offset to act as a VPN (Virtual Private Network) daemon, which uses encryption and tunnelling to build a secure and strong private network between two or more hosts on the Internet.
Features at a glance
Key features include support for encryption, compression and authentication, automatic full mesh routing, ability to bridge Ethernet segments, full support for IPv6, ability to expand the VPN, OpenSSL/LZO/zlib compressed traffic, direct VPN traffic, ability to add nodes to the VPN via an optional configuration files, and ability to link multiple Ethernet segments together.
tinc is not your regular command-line program with which you can interact, as it is designed to run in the background when the computer starts, as a non-interactive daemon. However, several command-line options are implemented in the program, which can be viewed at a glance by running the ‘tincd --help’ command in a terminal emulator.
Among its CLI options, we can mention the ability to specify a custom configuration directory, enable ‘do not detach’ mode, specify a debug level, specify a kill signal, specify the network name, generate keys, specify log and PID files to use, specify a user, enable chroot, as well as to specify the host and key.
Unfortunately, no pre-built binary packages are available for this software, which means that you will have to compile it prior to installation. For that, you must download the source tarball from Softpedia, unpack it, open a terminal emulator app, use the ‘cd’ command to navigate to the extracted directory and run the ‘./configure && make’ command, followed by the ‘sudo make install’ command.
Under the hood and supported OSes
Taking a look under the hood of tinc, we can notice that the software is written entirely in the C programming language, which means that it is extremely fast. Being cross-platform, tinc works under GNU/Linux, BSD (FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD), Solaris, Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. It has been successfully tested on 32-bit and 64-bit computers.