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Five Steps in Setting Up and Tearing Down an IPsec Site-to-Site VPN Using IKEv1 by Anthony Sequeira

The process of establishing, maintaining, and tearing down an IPsec site-to-site VPN consists of five primary steps, which are illustrated in figure 19.4 and described in detail in the list that follows.

Step 1. PC1 sends traffic destined for PC2. Router 1 classifies the traffic as "interesting" traffic, and this classification initiates the creation of an IPsec tunnel.

Step 2. Router1 and Router2 negotiate an SA (security association) used to form an IKE (Internet Key exchange) Phase 1 tunnel, which is also known as an ISAKMP (Internet Security Association and Key Management Protocol) tunnel.

Step 3. Within the protection of the IKE Phase 1 tunnel, an IKE Phase 2 tunnel is negotiated and set up. An IKE Phase 2 tunnel is also known as an IPsec tunnel.

Step 4. After the IPsec tunnel is established, interesting traffic (for example traffic classified by an ACL) flows through the protected IPsec tunnel. Note that traffic not deemed interesting can still be sent between PC1 and PC2. However. the noninteresting traffic outside the protection of the IPsec tunnel.

Step 5. After no interesting traffic is seen for a specified amount of time, the IPsec tunnel is torn down and IPsec SA is deleted.

This example describes an IPsec site-to-site VPN, but the procedure is similar for a client-to-site VPN. IPsec is typically deployed using IKEv1, with its two phases (Phase 1 and Phase 2).

About The Author

Anthony Sequeira, CCIE No. 15626, is a Cisco Certified Systems Instructor (CCSI) and author regarding all levels and tracks of Cisco Certification. Anthony formally began his career in the information technology industry in 1994 with IBM in Tampa, Florida. He quickly formed his own computer consultancy, Computer Solutions, and then discovered his true passion-teaching and writing about Microsoft and Cisco technologies. Anthony joined Mastering Computers in 1996 and lectured to massive audiences around the world about the latest in computer technologies. Mastering Computers became the revolutionary online training company, KnowledgeNet, and Anthony trained there for many years. Anthony is currently pursuing his second CCIE in the area of Security and is a full-time instructor for the next-generation of KnowledgeNet, StormWind.com. Anthony is also a VMware Certified Professional.

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