What is L2TP?

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Updated September 22, 2022

If you are new to the world of private networking, you may wonder, “What is L2TP?” Some of the best VPNs, after all, use this technology to achieve a more private and secure connection. So what exactly is L2TP, how does it work, and what are its varied benefits? Keep reading to find out everything you want to know.


  • L2TP stands for Layer-Two Tunneling Protocol and is an extension of Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP.)
  • L2TP VPNs offer increased speed compared to standard control packet offerings, nearing 100 Mbps in some cases.
  • This IP network technology still offers a secure channel and privacy-enhancing encryption protocols and is great for accessing geo-restricted content when traveling or using public networks.

What is L2TP in Networking?

Many VPN services use L2TP technology if you are wondering what your VPN’s IP address is. LT2P stands for Layer-Two Tunneling Protocol, and it is an extension of the Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol, which is useful when learning the definition of a PPTP. This technology is used by Internet service providers (ISPs) to allow VPNs a stable a reliable connection, which is useful when learning the definition of an IPsec.

Insider Tip

If you are keen on L2TP, make sure your chosen VPN uses it as its primary technology.

L2TP connections are fully encrypted, which is one of the reasons VPNs can offer increased privacy while conducting various online activities.

Benefits of L2TP

There are many benefits of choosing a virtual private network with a robust integrated L2TP in place. Here are just some of these benefits.

Increased Security

L2TP VPN protocols are constantly changing and advancing the meet modern security needs. The latest protocol is considered by many to be the most secure way to establish an Internet connection when compared to all other VPN-adjacent technologies. It prevents data from being altered when traveling between two destinations, the sender and the receiver. This is end-to-end encryption at its very best. It also encrypts the authentication process for even more security.

Faster Speeds

Despite offering full encryption and increased security and privacy, your browsing speeds will still be decent when using an L2TP VPN. Depending on the L2TP/IPsec server configuration, your speeds will be nearly as fast as a non-encrypted server connection. In other words, these connections can nearly hit a 100Mbps broadband connection, which is great for those suffering from a slow VPN.

STAT: Published in 2000 as proposed standard RFC 2661, L2TP has its origins primarily in two older tunneling protocols for point-to-point communication: Cisco’s Layer 2 Forwarding Protocol (L2F) and Microsoft’s Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP). (source)


L2TP is a tried-and-true technology with compatibility across multiple device types, including smartphones, streaming sticks, and, of course, laptops and desktops. You should have no trouble integrating an L2TP VPN server connection with your setup, no matter what you plan on using it for. Many modern VPNs, for instance, offer dedicated apps built for streaming sticks, smartphones, and other gadgets. In other words, it is getting close to a “plug-and-play” experience.


What is L2TP used for?

L2TP is used on various operating systems for accessing public networks, streaming content from geo-restricted locations, increasing your Internet privacy, and more.

How does L2TP differ from PPTP?

L2TP uses multiple tunnels when cruising through public networks and operating systems, while PPTP uses just one tunnel. The level of security remains the same, but L2TP is faster.

What is L2TP over IPsec?

This is a combination of technologies that use L2 transfer protocols and IPsec IP networks. This hybrid IPsec protocol offers the best of both worlds, with an increased level of security and integration with a vast array of operating systems.
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