I want to install OpenVPN server in my VPS.

After configuration I run sudo service openvpn start, but failed to start.

Is there a some kind of "grammar check" option for server.conf?

I put the config file in /etc/openvpn/server.conf, and I'm using CentOS 6.6.

And this is a result of openvpn --version:

openvpn --version
OpenVPN 2.3.7 x86_64-redhat-linux-gnu [SSL (OpenSSL)] [LZO] [EPOLL] [PKCS11] [MH] [IPv6] built on Jun  9 2015
library versions: OpenSSL 1.0.1e-fips 11 Feb 2013, LZO 2.03
Originally developed by James Yonan
Copyright (C) 2002-2010 OpenVPN Technologies, Inc. <[email protected]>
Compile time defines: enable_crypto=yes enable_crypto_ofb_cfb=yes enable_debug=yes enable_def_auth=yes enable_dlopen=unknown enable_dlopen_self=unknown enable_dlopen_self_static=unknown enable_fast_install=yes enable_fragment=yes enable_http_proxy=yes enable_iproute2=yes enable_libtool_lock=yes enable_lzo=yes enable_lzo_stub=no enable_management=yes enable_multi=yes enable_multihome=yes enable_pam_dlopen=no enable_password_save=yes enable_pedantic=no enable_pf=yes enable_pkcs11=yes enable_plugin_auth_pam=yes enable_plugin_down_root=yes enable_plugins=yes enable_port_share=yes enable_pthread=yes enable_selinux=no enable_server=yes enable_shared=yes enable_shared_with_static_runtimes=no enable_small=no enable_socks=yes enable_ssl=yes enable_static=yes enable_strict=no enable_strict_options=no enable_systemd=no enable_win32_dll=yes enable_x509_alt_username=yes with_crypto_library=openssl with_gnu_ld=yes with_iproute_path=/sbin/ip with_mem_check=no with_plugindir='$(libdir)/openvpn/plugins' with_sysroot=no

What should I do to determine the cause of error?

1 Answer 1


I don't believe that there's any specific command to do a syntax check, but you can run openvpn in the foreground, which should show the specific error:

openvpn --config /path/to/server.conf
  • 3
    If you have logging to file set up in the config file, comment it out first, or look for the output in the specified log files. If log files are defined, logging is directed there even when openvpn is executed in the foreground.
    – Ville
    Commented Jan 9, 2017 at 3:22

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