Recently I decided that I wanted to setup an OpenVPN server so that I could access my lab environment at home over an encrypted connection. In order to automate the configuration of this, I decided to use the luxflux/openvpn Forge module. These directions are for a CentOS/Enterprise Linux 6 system.

One thing I noticed in the directions on the GitHub page for the site is that it says that there is a class for the module called openvpn::servers, which supposedly allows you to setup the module using class parameters in Hiera. This class does not actually exist in the current version of the module, which I quickly learned after attempting to add it in my ENC. Instead, I had to create my own module with its own set of parameters that called the openvpn::server defined type to configure my VPN server.

First, I created a module called site_openvpn in my set of custom modules, with a params class that contains the list of parameters to be read in from Hiera.

class site_openvpn::params {

  $vpn_clients = hiera(vpn_clients)
  $vpn_lcl_net = hiera(vpn_lcl_net)
  $vpn_rem_ip = hiera(vpn_rem_ip, $::ipaddress)
  $vpn_subnet = hiera(vpn_subnet)


The meaning of the above parameters are:

  • $vpn_clients: this is an array of your VPN client names. Example: test_laptop.
  • $vpn_lcl_net: the subnet of your LAN, such as your home or office network
  • $vpn_rem_ip: the IP your clients will connect to. This may be different than the IP of your VPN server if it resides behind a NAT.
  • $vpn_subnet: the network your VPN clients will connect on.

Create a firewall manifest that opens the necessary ports for OpenVPN:

class site_openvpn::firewall (
$vpn_subnet = $site_openvpn::params::vpn_subnet,
) inherits site_openvpn::params {

  firewall { '120 allow 1194/TCP for OpenVPN':
    state  => 'NEW',
    dport  => '1194',
    proto  => 'tcp',
    action => 'accept',

  firewall { '121 allow TUN connections':
    chain   => 'INPUT',
    proto   => 'all',
    iniface => 'tun+',
    action  => 'accept',

  firewall { '122 forward TUN forward connections':
    chain   => 'FORWARD',
    proto   => 'all',
    iniface => 'tun+',
    action  => 'accept',

  firewall { '123 tun+ to eth0':
    chain    => 'FORWARD',
    proto    => 'all',
    iniface  => 'tun+',
    outiface => 'eth0',
    state    => [ 'ESTABLISHED', 'RELATED' ],
    action   => 'accept',

  firewall { '124 eth0 to tun+':
    chain    => 'FORWARD',
    proto    => 'all',
    iniface  => 'eth0',
    outiface => 'tun+',
    state    => [ 'ESTABLISHED', 'RELATED' ],
    action   => 'accept',

  firewall { '125 POSTROUTING':
    table    => 'nat',
    proto    => 'all',
    chain    => 'POSTROUTING',
    source   => "${vpn_subnet}/24",
    outiface => 'eth0',
    jump     => 'MASQUERADE',


Create a init.pp manifest that calls the luxflux/openvpn with your parameters. Note, for dhcp-option DNS, I am using the OpenVPN server itself as a caching/forwarding DNS server, because I’ve run into problems with the DNS traffic forwarding correctly. You can point this to another server, however.

class site_openvpn (
  $vpn_clients = $site_openvpn::params::vpn_clients,
  $vpn_lcl_net = $site_openvpn::params::vpn_lcl_net,
  $vpn_rem_ip  = $site_openvpn::params::vpn_rem_ip,
  $vpn_subnet  = $site_openvpn::params::vpn_subnet,
) inherits site_openvpn::params {

  include ::openvpn
  include site_openvpn::firewall

  ::openvpn::server { $::fqdn:
    country      => 'US',
    province     => 'NC',
    city         => 'Your City',
    organization => $::domain,
    email        => "root@${::domain}",
    server       => "$vpn_subnet",
    route        => [
    push         => [
      "route ${vpn_lcl_net}",
      "redirect-gateway def1 bypass-dhcp",
      "dhcp-option DNS $::ipaddress_tun0",
    c2c          => true,

  # Create the VPN client configs
  ::openvpn::client { $vpn_clients:
    server      => $::fqdn,
    remote_host => $vpn_rem_ip,


You will also need to set net.ipv4.ip_forward to 1 in /etc/sysctl.conf, so that the traffic can be forwarded through your OpenVPN server to the local LAN. I have a separate class that manages this, but you can include the code in your site_openvpn manifest as well:


class sysctl {

  file { '/etc/sysctl.conf':
    ensure => file,

  exec { 'sysctl -p':
    command     => '/sbin/sysctl -p',
    refreshonly => true,
    subscribe   => File['/etc/sysctl.conf'],



class sysctl::ip_forward {

  include sysctl

  augeas { 'sysctl_ip_forward':
    context => '/files/etc/sysctl.conf',
    onlyif  => "get net.ipv4.ip_forward == '0'",
    changes => "set net.ipv4.ip_forward '1'",
    notify  => Exec['sysctl -p'],


Finally, create the hiera parameters for the host. I’m creating these in a .yaml file for the host:

vpn_rem_ip: ''
vpn_subnet: ''
vpn_lcl_net: ''
  - 'iphone6'
  - 'macbook'

Include the site_openvpn and sysctl::ip_forward modules in your node definition or ENC if applicable, and run Puppet on the OpenVPN server. This will install OpenVPN, configure the server, and generate the client configs.

Once installation is complete, the .ovpn client config files will be accessible at /etc/openvpn//download-configs. You can SCP these individual files to import into a Mac (such as Tunnelblick), Windows, Linux, or mobile OpenVPN client.

Author’s note: in my previous post, I forgot to include “proto => ‘all'” in some of the firewall resources, which would cause issues with UDP traffic such as DNS forwarding correctly.