I was wondering when I connect to an OpenVPN server what kind of information can the server extract from my client?

Obviously the server can detect my user-id, pwd, but can it detect:

  • My vpn-client-software (say would it know that I'm connecting using tunnelblick)?
  • My O/S (osx, linux, windows, etc)
  • My IP (I think the answer to this one is YES)
  • My mac-address (aa:bb:cc:...)

Not sure how the question @Ohnana has linked answer my question?

I'm not talking about a vpn server tracking my traffic, I'm asking if they can extract information about my machine and my client?

  • Possible duplicate of Can OpenVPN monitor my passwords in my browser?
    – Ohnana
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:23
  • @Ohnana I don't know enough about vpn to see a relation between what they're asking and what I'm asking...
    – hba
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:26
  • 3
    The second bullet point of the answer stood out as the answer to your question: "If someone runs the OpenVPN server for you then it is a matter of trust..." Since they own the server, they can install extra utilities to fingerprint your machine, capture software banners, and log your IP address.
    – Ohnana
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:36
  • True. The server indeed can fingerprint and intercept a lot in theory like Ohnana said. However, using an operating system like e.g Tails solves a lot of these fingerprint issues (tails.boum.org/contribute/design) you can configure any (UNIX/*nix) system to avoid fingerprinting. Yet using Tails is safer against human errors.
    – O'Niel
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:55

1 Answer 1


Agree with @Ohnana and I have some to add: it is possible via source tailoring to make an OpenVPN client "faceless", without any os/version/libs fingerprint. But if this openvpn is not used as a tunnel for another OpenVPN - first web browser HTTP plain session will tell everything about you

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