TrueStack Direct Connect is a VPN management server made to connect Windows and Mac computers to Windows domain controllers and files servers in the AWS and Azure clouds.  This tutorial will help you set up your own TrueStack Direct Connect instance in your Microsoft Azure account.

  1. If you don’t have an Azure account, create a free account. Non-Profits may be eligible for $5000 in yearly Azure credits through Techsoup. Apply here.
  2. Log in to the Azure portal.
  3. Click on Create a resource.  In the search field type TrueStack and click enter.
  4. Choose between TrueStack Direct Connect 10 (Free), 25, 50 or Unlimited device connections.
  5. Click on Create to deploy through the Resource Manager.
  6. Under the Basics tab, create a name for your virtual machine.  Remember this because this is also the initial logon password (see below).
  7. Leave the VM disk type as the default, SSD.
  8. Create a username and password or use an SSH public key.  This username/password will only be used if you need to ssh into the Virtual Machine to reset the default password for the console.
  9. Leave the subscription as Pay-As-You-Go.
  10. Create a new resource group and give it a name.
  11. Choose the location and click Ok.  Be aware that some locations do not allow static IPs.  We recommend using a static IP (see below).  As of this writing, these locations do not allow static IPs: North Central US, West US, Korea South, Korea Central, France Central, East US 2, East US, East Asia, Canada East.  We recommend choosing a different location.
  12. Here’s what it should look like:
  13. Choose a Virtual Machine size.  We recommend starting with DS1_V2 for 50 connected devices or less.  Scroll down or search for DS1_V2. You can increase your VM size if needed later.  Highlight the VM and click Select.
    Azure VM DS1_V2
  14. On the Settings page, leave everything set to defaults except:  Change Use managed disks from Yes to No and change Boot Diagnostics to disabled. Click Ok.
  15. Here’s what the settings page should look like.  Click on each image to expand.
  16. Enter a preferred email address and phone number.  This is required.
  17. Click Create.  It may take 3 – 4 minutes for your TrueStack Direct Connect virtual machine to deploy.

Create a Route Table:

A route table will allow you to access connected devices from a Windows or other server in your Azure account.  This is required for Windows group policies and DNS to work correctly.
  1. First you’ll need the local IP of your virtual machine. Click on Virtual Machines on the left panel.  Find and notate the private IP of your TrueStack Direct Connect Virtual Machine.  It may be something like this.  Also notate the Public IP.  It might be similar to this  You’ll need it later.
  2. From the dashboard click on Create a resource.
  3. Type route table in the Search field. Click enter.
  4. The result should look like this.  Click on Route Table and click Create.
  5. Give it a name and use the resource group that you created earlier.  Be sure that the location is the same location you chose earlier.  Change BGP route propagation to disabled. Click Create.
  6. Here’s what the Route Table should look like.  Click on the image to expand it.
  7. On the left panel, click on Resource Groups and open the resource group you created earlier. Click on the Route table that you created.
  8. Click on Routes on the left side.
  9. Click Add at the top, to add a route.
  10. Type in a route name.
  11. In the Address Prefix type  This is the subnet that TrueStack Direct Connect will use for the VPN connections.
  12. In the Next hop type choose Virtual Appliance from the drop down.
  13. For the next hop address type the IP of the TrueStack Direct Connect virtual machine that you notated earlier.  Something like  Click Ok.
  14. Here’s what the route should look like. Click on the image to expand it.
  15. On the left panel of the route table click on Subnets.
  16. Click Associate at the top.
  17. Click on 1 Virtual Network and choose the virtual network for the resource group you created.
  18. Click on 2 Subnet and choose the default subnet for that virtual network.
  19. Make sure both check marks are green and click Ok.
  20. Click on Overview on the upper left side to see how it appears.  Here’s how you’re route table should look:

Change from a dynamic to a Static IP

A static IP is a public IP that doesn’t change.  This is a good idea because without a static IP, whenever you restart your virtual machine you will receive a new public IP.  Although you’re connected devices use DNS to find the server, since the DNS IP will have changed after the restart the devices may take a long time to get the updated route. To avoid this, set a static IP.
Be aware that some locations don’t allow static IPs.  As of this writing those are:
  • North Central US
  • West US
  • Korea South
  • Korea Central
  • France Central
  • East US 2
  • East US
  • East Asia
  • Canada East
  1. From the left panel click on virtual machines.  Click on the TrueStack Direct Connect virtual machine.
  2. Click on the IP address under Public IP Address.
  3. Change the assignment from Dynamic to Static and click save.
  4. This may reboot your virtual machine.

Accessing the Console

  1. To access the console open a browser.  We recommend using Google Chrome.
  2. Type in the public (static) IP address in the address bar.  It will redirect to a TrueStack https address.  Something like  Save this DNS address.  You can use it to access the console at anytime in the future.
  3. On the console logon page, accept the Eula and type in your TrueStack Direct Connect Virtual Machine name for the passwordThe password is the name you created at the beginning on the basics tab.  It isn’t the password you created.  That password will only be used to SSH into the server if needed.  If you do not know it, in the Azure Portal click on Virtual Machines on the left panel to find the TrueStack Direct Connect virtual machine name.
  4. We recommend changing this default password on the settings tab after you logon.


Azure – TrueStack Direct Connect Initial Configuration