Fruho: A User Friendly VPN Tool for Linux

Want to set up a VPN connection on your Linux machine? Frustrated and confused on how to do it? This program may be an option for you. It’s called Fruho.

Fruho is a lightweight VPN manager for Linux. The developers boast that it requires no configuration to get going. The aim of this program is to make connecting to various VPN providers easy. It’s built with OpenVPN and makes use of various encryption standards by default (256-bit AES and 2048-bit RSA respectively).

One of the selling points is that when connecting, the access keys are generated locally with no communication with remote servers whatsoever. Another selling point is a powerful GUI interface. (And it also has a decent CLI client too.)

So, how do you get it installed on Linux, and is it even any good? Let’s find out!

The developer has made packages available for Debian/Ubuntu and RPM-based distributions. There is no repository to speak of, so if the package file itself doesn’t include one you may want to visit this page every so often and re-download to update.

Install on Debian/Ubuntu distributions:

To install on Debian/Ubuntu-based distributions, first download the deb file.

wget -O fruho.deb https://github.com/fruho/fruhoapp/releases/download/fruho-0.0.21/fruho_0.0.21_amd64.deb

or

wget -O fruho.deb https://github.com/fruho/fruhoapp/releases/download/fruho-0.0.21/fruho_0.0.21_i386.deb

fruho-wget-deb

After the package file has been grabbed from the server and saved as “fruho.deb,” it’s time to install it to the system.

sudo dpkg -i fruho.deb

fruho-install-deb

Once installed, you might be experiencing some dependency issues. This may not happen, and chances are you’ll be able to go on and use the program. However, if the package installs in error, simply run this command and everything should be fixed.

sudo apt-get install -f

Install on Fedora and other Redhat distributions:

Download the rpm file:

wget -O fruho.rpm https://github.com/fruho/fruhoapp/releases/download/fruho-0.0.21/fruho-0.0.21-1.x86_64.rpm

or

wget -O fruho.rpm https://github.com/fruho/fruhoapp/releases/download/fruho-0.0.21/fruho-0.0.21-1.i386.rpm

To install:

sudo dnf install fruho.rpm

Note: if you’re running Open SUSE or any other Redhat-based distro, chances are these package files will work. Just follow the wget instructions above, and then install the package file with your package manager.

fruho-github-page

Debian and Redhat package files are all that are currently distributed for this app – mention of source code or a .tar.gz file linked on the page is with the other package files. After some digging the project’s github page was found, though after some tinkering it turned out to be very tedious to get working. If you really want to run Fruho, and your Linux distribution doesn’t come with the supported package files, go here and try your hand at it.

Setting up VPNs on computers (regardless of operating system) is tedious and complex. This is what Fruho is attempting to solve – the lack of user-friendliness when setting up a VPN on Linux.

When you launch this app you’re presented with many choices from commercial VPN providers. These providers include SecurityKISS, VpnBook, Mullvad, HideIpVPN, CactusVPN, VyprVPN, ibVPN, AirVPN and CyberGhost VPN.

fruho-list-of-vpn-providers

The GUI is very straight-forward in this regard. When you’re looking to connect to any one of these services, all that’s required is entering the username and password you received when you purchased the service.

fruho-connect-custom-vpn

Additionally, Fruho is very simple when connected to self-hosted VPNs (like OpenVPN and etc). There’s really nothing complicated about it. All you’ll really need to do is copy your “.ovpn” client file over, click “From file,” find the file and then click “Import configuration.” After that Fruho will automatically connect and be done with it.

Overall, Fruho is a simple take on connecting to VPN providers. Even on Linux the barrier to entry for these services can put people off, so it’s really refreshing to see a program with not a lot of frills – something that does one thing and does it well.

You won’t find a whole lot of extra features packed into Fruho, and that’s the best part. Linux users concerned about their privacy and looking to jump on the VPN train won’t be stuck in wiki pages for hours. Instead download, install and connect.

It’s not a perfect program, far from it. The user interface is dated and sometimes clunky, and the developers really haven’t shown much love to anyone outside of the DEB or RPM camps. That being said, I challenge you to find an easier-to–use program to interact with VPNs than Fruho.

Are you a VPN user? What service do you use? Tell us below!

Image Credit: Andrew Hart

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