Opened 8 months ago

Closed 6 months ago

Last modified 6 months ago

#1344 closed Bug / Defect (fixed)

Windows installer 2.5.0 missing "Openvpn Legacy Service"

Reported by: tincantech Owned by: tincantech
Priority: minor Milestone: release 2.5.1
Component: Installation Version: OpenVPN 2.5.0 (Community Ed)
Severity: Not set (select this one, unless your'e a OpenVPN developer) Keywords:
Cc: tincantech, Samuli Seppänen

Description (last modified by tincantech)

After installing Openvpn 2.5.0 release the Openvpn Legacy Service is missing from services.msc

Customise -> FULL install was chosen.

The last version I found which still included this service is 2.4.6, still available from the official download site.

Change History (20)

comment:1 Changed 8 months ago by tincantech

Cc: tincantech added

comment:2 Changed 8 months ago by tincantech

Description: modified (diff)

comment:3 Changed 8 months ago by hamzen

+1 Thanks for fixing this!

comment:4 Changed 8 months ago by tincantech

Reading openvpn/changes.rst:

New improved Windows Background service

The new OpenVPNService is based on openvpnserv2, a complete rewrite of the OpenVPN service wrapper. It is intended for launching OpenVPN instances that should be up at all times, instead of being manually launched by a user. OpenVPNService is able to restart individual OpenVPN processes if they crash, and it also works properly on recent Windows versions. OpenVPNServiceLegacy tends to work poorly, if at all, on newer Windows versions (8+) and its use is not recommended.

Testing with Windows 7 32bit, the openvpnserv2.exe does not appear to do anything. And the Legacy service is gone.

Last edited 8 months ago by tincantech (previous) (diff)

comment:5 Changed 8 months ago by tincantech

OK, figured out how to use openvpnserv2.exe - Still the Legacy service is missing and this is not included in changes.rst

comment:6 Changed 7 months ago by Gert Döring

Cc: Samuli Seppänen added
Milestone: release 2.5.1
Owner: set to tincantech
Priority: majorminor
Status: newassigned

Actually the legacy service is still there, it's part of openvpnserv.exe. It's just the installer that is neglecting to register the second service.

Since it never really worked well - which is why openvpnserv2 was introduced like 100 years ago :-) - not sure we should be bringing it back.

Care to send a patch to changes.rst so we can make this more obvious for 2.5.1? Maybe even a patch for the README presented at the end of the installation?

comment:7 Changed 7 months ago by tincantech

Would it be suitable to add this as deprecated ?

comment:8 Changed 7 months ago by Gert Döring

Since you mentioned "is not included in changes.rst", I don't think the wiki page is a sufficient replacement... adding it there *too* might be a good thing, even if it's not an option :-)

comment:10 Changed 7 months ago by tincantech

I updated the deprecation notice above to include version deprecation and removal.

I'll send an appropriate patch unless I hear otherwise.

comment:11 Changed 7 months ago by hamzen

This ticket was opened to fix a "suddenly missing basic feature".
Not to "document it's absence afterward"...

Please create a "Last release" (2.5.1) including Legacy service,
so it can be properly installed in current W10 versions!
(2.4.6 does NOT work any more, because the TAP driver is disabled by Win10 latest update.)

And leave it on the download page!
(As "Last version of Legacy service")

And you may deprecate it later (v3.0 or at least v2.6) while announcing it publicly on release/download page!
(Not as tiny 24. memo on a well hidden page nobody knows about, except a few developers.)

comment:12 Changed 7 months ago by hamzen

Such big changes should NOT be done during tiny sub-version difference.
If you're not using v20201208 format, (which would be much much more easier to understand,) at least give always a "bigger jump" with versioning to show us, mortal users there is a "big change" coming.

(A few years ago you did the same: removed MD5 during a sub-version change without publicly announcing on the download page. Took us 2 days of working hours wasted until we found out what's going on, why clients can not suddenly connect.)

Also please think about for a moment, how difficult is to change remotely a client installation WHILE you're connected through the old VPN version to it...

I'm a Delphi developer since 25 years supporting hundreds of remote clients (restaurants). Still, I have absolutely no understanding of, why other developers find it sooooo hard to change a version number from to 3.0 to show a "Big step" ???

Or even better: v2020.12.08
Does it hurt?

comment:13 in reply to:  11 Changed 7 months ago by Gert Döring

There seems to be something of a misunderstanding here, so let me clarify a few things.

  • 2.4.9 is available on the download page, with a TAP driver that works on Win10, and including the legacy service. There will be a 2.4.10 these days which will contain exactly the same TAP driver version as included in 2.5.0 (I'm not sure about 2.4.9 - I know it works, but it might contain a slightly older version missing a bugfix).
  • 2.5.0 is not "a minor sub-version difference" to 2.4.x - it's a major upgrade, with large code changes, a totally rewritten installer (going from NSIS to MSI is not a minor thing). Our numbering scheme has "the big steps" in the second digit, and the "small steps" in the third. This is documented, and the release announcement also makes this quite clear that this is a major new version.
  • as we maintain the 2.4.x and 2.5.x series in parallel, calling a version "v2020.12.08" is not exactly helpful - is this "a bugfix for the older stable series?" or "a brand new feature release which might not be as well tested yet?". 2.4.9 is "stable", 2.5.0 is "brand new". There will be a 2.4.10 soonish, and a 2.5.1 in a few weeks.
  • we've called for testing of the 2.5 pre-releases multiple times. Nobody ever mentioned the absence of the legacy service. As this is a community project, part of "I do not pay for this software" is "help when we call for testing", not "shout at us later".
  • so, yes, sorry that we forgot to put this change in the Changes.rst file. Since work on the MSI installers took about two years (volunteers do not always have as much time as needed) this detail was just overlooked when compiling the Changes.rst for the 2.5 release. We are happy to document it, though.
  • no, the legacy service will not be brought back in the 2.5 series (this is less about 2.5 but about the MSI installers). For most people that did use it it was not working very reliably - which is why openvpnsrv2 was written in the first place, and has been shipping since at least 5 years. Naming something "legacy" is a hint that it might go away one day.
  • we have documented how NSIS installers are built (it's all in the wiki). This is still possible, so you can build an OpenVPN 2.5.0 NSIS installer, which will behave "like in the old times", including the old service (and a signed TAP driver). We will not provide NSIS installers anymore, though, and do not guarantee that this might not break in the future.

Generally speaking, we have too many people yelling at us what they want / what we did not do to their liking, and too few people actually helping the project to get there. So, turning this discussion around a bit: if openvpnsrv2.exe is not working properly for you, what is missing? Are you willing to contribute? It's in C# and much cleaner than the old C code in the legacy service.

comment:14 Changed 7 months ago by hamzen

@Gert Döring

Thanks for the clarification!

"There will be a 2.4.10 these days which will contain exactly the same TAP driver version as included in 2.5.0"

Did not know that, that changes everything. (Sorry for my long letters.)
Sorry I can not participate so much with testing/helping than before.

Thank You & Marry Xmas! :)

PS: forgot to mention the most important part:

  • You guys are making an EXCELLENT job by developing OpenVPN ! We all are very grateful.

comment:15 Changed 7 months ago by Samuli Seppänen

I'm also interested in what the legacy service (OpenVPNServiceLegacy) does that OpenVPNService cannot?

comment:16 Changed 6 months ago by Gert Döring

So, here's the plan...

  • it is gone, and it stays gone
  • 2.5.1 installers will present this message more prominently in the after-install README
  • we add it to Changes.rst (for 2.5.1 and retroactively, sort of)
  • and someone who actually uses that stuff should write a wiki article "if I use the legacy service today, what do I need to do to use the openvpnsrv2 instead?" - I have never used either, so would need to do much more digging than someone who has already done this.
  • update all references in our trac to point to service2

comment:17 Changed 6 months ago by tincantech

I can make a wiki.

comment:18 Changed 6 months ago by tincantech

Resolution: fixed
Status: assignedclosed

comment:19 Changed 6 months ago by tincantech

Milestone: release 2.5.1release 2.5

comment:20 Changed 6 months ago by tincantech

Milestone: release 2.5release 2.5.1

as with all technology, mistakes are made.

Last edited 6 months ago by tincantech (previous) (diff)
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