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Cellular Router Firmware Update Adds BridgeVPN for Single-Site Secure Remote Access

Contemporary Controls' EIGR-C high-speed router links cellular to 10/100/1000 Mbps Internet Protocol (IPv4) networks. Available with firmware 2.0.0, the EIGR-C series now supports BridgeVPN to provide secure remote access at a single location where a wired connectivity is an issue. The BridgeVPN functionality was originally available on the EIGR-VB wired routers, but with this firmware update, remote sites can now be accessed over cellular.

BridgeVPN utilizes the EIGR-C set to OpenVPN server mode and connected to the Internet. With this configuration, users can set up and maintain their own secure remote access without subscription fees and without the need for a cloud-based VPN server.

VPNs provide secure access to remote devices with data encryption and should be preferred over Port Forwarding. In OpenVPN server mode, the EIGR-C router supports up to 10 VPN clients on Windows and Linux PCs. The VPN clients are bridged to the router's LAN side and assigned an IP address from the LAN subnet which provides the same application experience as if the client devices were part of the router's LAN. Bridge mode allows passage of multicast and broadcast messages through the VPN tunnel. This setup greatly simplifies access to BACnet systems at remote sites, eliminating the need for a BACnet/IP Broadcast Management Device (BBMD) . The VPN client PC can easily run BACnet client applications to discover and communicate with BACnet devices at the remote site.

The EIGR-C features a built-in cellular modem to link cellular to IPv4 networks—passing appropriate traffic while blocking all other traffic. One network is the local-area-network (LAN); the cellular is the wide-area-network (WAN). It also has an Ethernet port that can act as the WAN if cellular access is not required. The built-in stateful firewall passes communication initiated on the LAN-side while blocking WAN-side initiated communication. With Port Address Translation (PAT), LAN-side clients can access the Internet. The EIGR-C's OpenVPN client functionality is also compatible with Contemporary Controls' Cloud-VPN service, RemoteVPN.

The EIGR-C has many of the same features found in high-end routers, but it is simpler to install and commission. A resident DHCP server on the LAN-side will provide IP addresses to LAN-side clients. Configuration is via a web browser using authentication. With a DIN-rail mounting clip, rugged metal enclosure and the ability to be powered from a low-voltage AC/DC power source, the EIGR-C is ideal for automation and building management systems alike.

For more information, visit the Skorpion GigE Cellular IP Routers page.