WireGuard & OpenVPN are the two most popular names that come to mind when talking about open-source VPN protocols. Until now, all the VPN clients were using an OpenVPN that helped them create a similar experience.
However, with WireGuard emerging as another option, a VPN protocol has become a differentiating feature for many users. While users used to look for features such as the type of encryption, availability of working servers, and kill switch availability, users are now being pushed to choose between WireGuard & OpenVPN protocols too.
Now that has become confusing for many users as not everyone knows the pros and cons of these protocols.
So what should you do? Which one should you opt for and why? Well, that is the question we will answer today through this post. Let’s quickly compare WireGuard Vs. OpenVPN and understand their differences so that you can make better decisions.
What is WireGuard?
Wireguard is a tunneling protocol VPNs use to establish a proper connection between the server and the system. It uses the user datagram protocol UDP to transfer data faster, making the process smooth and fast. It is considered to be a better alternative to the OpenVPN. Also, as it is being used by most VPN clients available in the market, it is currently the gold standard for open-source VPN protocol.
The WireGuard protocol is considerably efficient and is more accurate with the speeds that it has to offer. The idea behind using the WireGuard protocol is that it is faster and does not compromise the security aspect of a VPN.
What is OpenVPN?
On the other hand, the OpenVPN is one of the most commonly used protocols for VPN clients. It is a stable protocol with reliability, encryption, and proper server support. The VPN tunneling is also secure and top-notch, making it a go-to choice for all VPN developers and users. The only thing OpenVPN might not be able to do here is to offer you speed. However, that is not an issue for many VPN users considering the more crucial aspect of using one is the protection and security.
The OpenVPN allows you to transfer data using the TCP (transfer control protocol), making it more secure than any other. With more router support and the ability to harness obfuscated VPN servers, OpenVPN is still a pretty solid protocol to opt for.
Read Also: Advantages & Disadvantages of Using a VPN – YOU CANNOT MISS THIS
WireGuard Vs. Open VPN: The Ultimate Comparison
An average user is never interested in the type of connecting protocol used. All he looks for is a stable internet connection that allows him to make the most out of the available bandwidth. Hence, to compare both VPN protocols, we have divided the performance criteria into 3 major entities –
- Security & Authentication
- Stability & Compatibility
- Speed & Connectivity
We have manually tested both protocols using respective VPN clients supporting either. These 3 factors are what a user is more inclined toward as, in the end, it is all about the user, isn’t it?
Here’s what we found in our comparison analysis on each criterion –
Security & Authentication
WireGuard – Security in a VPN client refers to the type of encryption used to protect user data from leaking.
When we talk about encryption and security in WireGuard protocol, the configuration appears to be –
Type of Encryption Used – ChaCha 20
Authentication – Poly 1305
Looking at the configuration, the WireGuard uses top-quality encryption, considering the ChaCha20 is as good as the AES 256 encryption model. As far as authentication is concerned, the Poly 1305 is universal and industry standard, so it is not a problem.
On the other hand, if we talk about the OpenVPN protocol, there are multiple choices for a client to opt for when it comes to encryption. The tool offers choices to configure and tune a client’s aspects to their most optimized form.
The configuration for OpenVPN is as follows –
Type of Encryption Used – AES, Blowfish, Camellia, and ChaCha20
Authentication – Poly 1305
As mentioned above, OpenVPN is more inclined towards manual configuration and choices of encryption as per the client’s requirement. Since almost every other VPN client, both paid and free, uses OpenVPN, the configuration of security encryption can be done based on the type of VPN a company offers.
Our Verdict: It is quite smart to go for OpenVPN for providers and users as both the available protocols use a similar encryption model. However, OpenVPN has an edge for customization.
Stability & Compatibility
Another crucial factor you must consider before choosing is the stability of the protocol you want to use in a VPN. The stability of a VPN depends on multiple factors, such as its compatibility with the network and the system being used.
If we talk about WireGuard, it has excellent compatibility with most of the networks available. Since the servers being used are receptive to WireGuard, network stability should not be an issue with this open-source protocol.
However, the same can not be said for the system compatibility of Wireguard. The protocol was primarily designed and developed for Linux. The idea was to integrate it with the Linux Kernel. It was later that the support for other versions was rolled out. There are still a few bugs here and there when it comes to using WireGuard on Windows.
Not to mention, only a few routers currently support WireGuard, limiting its compatibility.
Coming to OpenVPN’s stability and compatibility it gives you stable feedback while connecting to the network. The OpenVPN has been around for a while, which is why every network has found its synchronization with the same. So network stability is not an issue here.
It supports all the operating systems, allowing you to experiment more with the protocol. Also, if you want to set up a VPN directly on your router, OpenVPN is the best choice to go ahead.
Our Verdict – OpenVPN protocol clearly has an advantage over WireGuard regarding compatibility, which also affects the stability of a VPN.
Speed & Connectivity
Now this is where the WireGuard protocol shines the most. Speed is something that has made WireGuard a popular choice among users. It has been observed that the difference per server for speed between Wireguard & OpenVPN is somewhere around 52%, with WireGuard being on the faster side.
The speed difference is evident! No need for a verdict here. WireGuard is a clear winner!
Final Score – 2/1 – OpenVPN Wins the Comparison
WireGuard Vs. Open VPN: Don’t Base Your Choice Over Speed!
We have successfully compared the two open-source VPN protocols currently available. As we inferred, the WireGuard protocol is faster. However, OpenVPN takes the cake thanks to its impeccable compatibility and security measures.
To experience these firsthand, you can choose from the handful of options available.
However, if you are confused about choosing the one with OpenVPN protocol, we recommend using Systweak VPN. It is one of the best optimized VPN clients that use the best features of OpenVPN and offer features a VPN must-have.
Download it today!
With that, we have also reached the end of this post. Do share your thoughts on the same in the comments below. Thanks for reading! Good Luck!
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