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Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Crash_HI
Tutor

Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi,

Our user cannot connect via VPN. The client says:

 

"The VPN Group list is empty"

 

The VPN group and user are correctly listed in the Insight web site. I tried removing and re-adding the user.

 

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated,

 

John

 

 

Model: BR500|Insight Instant VPN Router
Message 1 of 15
Glassweaver
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

I have multiple customers affected by this. I submitted a support case about this too. Personally, the issue has existed since 10AM CST 5/21/2021 that I am aware of. I can not conclusivley speak on belahf of Netgear, but I believe they stated that they recently became aware of the issue, bellieve to have found the issue, but do not have an ETA  on when it wil be resolved.  

 

Also: As Feedback for Netgear staff: status.netgear.com shows all clear for all netgear prpoducts right now. I would strongly encourage you guys to update these dashboards as soon as issues like this are found. Insight should not be flagged as fully operational when it is not and I am clearly not the only person taking up support staffs time right now.

 

Personally, I came close, but no actual success, with these steps:
The below steps made it so my test users could see their VPN groups again, and even connect to them, getting the correct scope & subnet once connected...but I still could not actually access any internal resources. While this is written like a guide, please do not follow it as such, as it seems to resolve nothing. I am simply writign this out in case anyone else can build on it: 

  • Login to insight and go to VPN groups at https://insight.netgear.com/#/routers/settings/VPNGroups
  • Delete the VPN router from the associated group that requires immedate workaround.  You may get an error in deleting it. If you do, refresh the page, and try again. I had to do this 2 or 3 times before the router was removed from the VPN group.
  • Click over to the users tab, wait for it to load, click back over to the  VPN groups tab. 
  • Re-add the router to the VPN group. You may have to do the above jumping between pages and readding 2 or 3 times for it to succeed.
  • Go back to users. Delete users who need the groups to show back up again. Refresh the webpage. If it fails, repeat this process until it completes. May take 2 or 3 times. 
  • Wait a minute, then re-add the user. Have them click the invitation email to accept the group. 

From this point, they will be able to see the group and seemingly connect to it, albeit in my testing, no actual network services will work. 

 

If you want an actual workaroud for your end users, setup openVPN if you know how to, or if permissible, get yourself into your network, get Anydesk or Teamviewer insalled on thier computers, and have them use that until this issue is resolved. They might not like it, but they sure will prefer it to driving back into the office over the weekend. 

Message 2 of 15
SBF1111
Initiate

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

We have a similar issue - raised a ticket two days ago and the issue is not fixed and there is no update from the netgear team.

We can't delete the group or the device - keep on getting an error message - extremely displeased by such poor support.

Note also that https://status.netgear.com/insight shows everything green - its not.

Model: BR500|Insight Instant VPN Router
Message 3 of 15
DamianM
NETGEAR Moderator

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hello @Crash_HI,

 

welcome to the NETGEAR community!

 

I would like to ask you to restart your devices so that they can re-establish the connection. Our engineers have applied a fix and it should work fine after the restart.

 

Regards,
DamianM
NETGEAR team

Message 4 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

After rebooting the router, according to the insight diagnostics, it is still broken.

Message 5 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

I tried OpenVPN, but could not get a stable connection with either of the systems I used to attempt to connect.

 

For example, once connected, if I try to install a network printer, after several tries sometimes I can do it, but it is rarely possible to print. If test by pinging the network printer ip when OpenVPN is connected, I get about 75% no reply or timeout, and tracert often reports destination is unreachable.

 

I personally use OpenVPN on my home Netgear router and NAS and have never had these problems, so I have to assume there is some issue with OpenVPN on the BR500.

 

In any case, OpenVPN has not been a viable workaround for me.

Thanks

Message 6 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi,

I also attempted to connect with the client system and it still says the VPN group is empty so it is not working.

Thanks

Message 7 of 15
DamianM
NETGEAR Moderator

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hello @Crash_HI,

 

I would like to discuss this case with the engineers and will let you know when I have further information for you.

 

Have a nice day! 

 

Best regards,
DamianM
NETGEAR team

Message 8 of 15
Glassweaver
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi Damian, 

I received an update from Bryan a couple days ago and can confirm that the issue is resolved for me. For some users, I did have to remove them from the Insight VPN group memberships and re-add them, but the issue for me is fixed.

 

As I iterated to Bryan in my case I had opened, please, pleeeaasssseeeeeeee try to be our voice in advocating for status.netgear.com to be updated next time an issue like this happens. If this were a service affecting issue with a Cisco device, status.cisco.com would have been updated within an hour of issue confirmation. Comparably, Netgear worked on this issue for two days without status.netgear.com having ever been updated. 

This makes it impossible to trust netgears status page, and will make many MSPs and in house IT professionals shy away when a page that important can't be trusted. The mere existence of this forum post we're conversign in, and lack of reflected status on that page, is a stark contrast to the worlds of Cisco, Aruba, Juniper...etc. 

 

Netgear makes great products, has good support, and, eventually, does fix issues like this. But these sorts of communicatoin issues would be a dealbreaker to any IT manager I have ever known. I'm not sure how the insight platform is going to grow and remain a viable product when netgears idea of communicating issues is to let you poor guys have to answer the same question over and over in support cases and forum posts that are never reflected on the status page. 

 

Anyway, thank you again for all you guys do.

Message 9 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi,

This morning the VPN client was spontaneously able to connect to the router without a problem, and the Insight app VPN diagnostic now shows GOOD. I assume that something must have been going on behind the scenes since I didn't work on this problem yesterday and haven't rebooted the router since they day we were told to do so.

 

We are glad it is working again,

 

John

Message 10 of 15
DamianM
NETGEAR Moderator

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hello @Crash_HI,

 

thank you for your feedback, our engineers were able to solve this problem. 

 

I am happy that it works again! 

 

Have a nice day! 

 

Best regards,
DamianM
NETGEAR team

Message 11 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi,

 

The VPN function failed again this morning. Now it says:

 

"More than the number of routers that can be added to this group"

 

Insight app diagnostics again shows Test VPN Server connection status: BROKEN. 

 

Thanks for your consideration.

Message 12 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

I logged out and logged back in to the VPN Client, and now it has returned to saying:

 

"The VPN Group list is Empty"

 

The Insight diagnostic is now showing the The test VPN server connection as GOOD.

 

Is there another service outage?

 

Thanks

 

 

Message 13 of 15
DamianM
NETGEAR Moderator

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hello @Crash_HI,

 

please restart your devices and try again. If it still doesn't work, please contact directly the support: https://www.netgear.com/uk/about/contact-us/

 

Best regards,
DamianM
NETGEAR team

Message 14 of 15
Crash_HI
Tutor

Re: Can't connect via VPN "The VPN Group list is empty"

Hi,

I have restarted the router a few more times to no avail, and have contacted support.

Thanks

Message 15 of 15
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