I followed the RHEL documentation at
and was able to deploy network to network IPSec VPN between two
private networks, as long as I set the IPSec Routers to be the same as
the LAN gateways.
But according to the documentation, it is possible to have the IPSec
routers different from the LAN gateways. The image shown in the above
cited page shows it. Also, it is even clearer depicted in an older
documentation at http://www.redhat.com/docs/manuals/enterprise/RHEL-4-Manual/security-...
especially with this image:
However, if I choose to have the Gateway different from the routers,
then in the /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-ipsec1 file, I need
to specify the gateway IP address for SRCGW, which is different from
the IP address of the IPSec router itself.
Then I am not able to run the "ifup ipsec1" command and get the error
of "RTNETLINK answers: Invalid argument".
I googled around and people seemed to suggest that the SRCGW needs to
the local intranet IP for the IPSec Router itself. But is this true if
this router is different from the LAN gateway? Most likely, before the
VPN is setup, there is already a LAN gateway for each private network
which is functioning as a NAT and firewall. When VPN is introduced, we
may want to leave the gateway alone and don't change the gateway
setup for any of the LAN host at all. As long as the LAN gateway is
able to forward VPN request to the IPSec Router, this should also
But how do I get around the "RTNETLINK answers: Invalid argument"
Thank you very much.