nat-traversal is a Node.js package that contains a relay server and client that can be used to perform NAT traversal, i.e. expose any TCP/IP service running behind a NAT.
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README.md

nat-traversal NPM version NPM downloads

nat-traversal is a Node.js package that contains a relay server and client that can be used to perform NAT traversal, i.e. expose any TCP/IP service running behind a NAT. This includes services that use HTTP and SSH.

Developed in Codefresh.

Features

  • Programmatic and CLI usage
  • Supports TLS connections between relay server and client (using pfx or key/cert, optional passphrase)
  • Automatically generate self-signed key/cert if none configured, using pem
  • Supports TLS connections from client apps (connection initiators) to relay server
  • Supports TLS connections from relay client to target server (connection receiver)
  • Supports TLS identity verification
  • Supports shared-secret authentication between client and server
  • Supports multiple connections
  • Keeps connections alive
  • Verbose mode (by default) and silent mode

Installation

To install from npm

yarn add nat-traversal

CLI Usage

The relay server is meant to be executed on a server visible on the internet, as follows

nat-traversal-server [--publicHost [IP]] --publicPort 10081 [--relayHost [IP]] --relayPort 10080 [--relaySecret key] [--relayTls] [--relayPfx file] [--relayKey file] [--relayCert file] [--relayPassphrase passphrase] [--publicTls] [--publicPfx file] [--publicKey file] [--publicCert file] [--publicPassphrase passphrase]  [--silent]

relayHost specifies the IP address to listen at (bind to). Node.js listens on unspecified IPv6 address :: by default. relayPort is the port where the relay server will listen for incoming connections from the relay client. publicHost specifies the IP address to listen at (bind to). Node.js listens on unspecified IPv6 address :: by default. publicPort is the port where internet clients can connect to the service exposed through the relay.

relaySecret specifies a shared secret key used to authorize relay clients.

relayTls option enables secure communication with relay client using TLS. relayCertCN option sets the Common Name for the server if auto-generating TLS certificates, for the verifyCerts option on the client. This should probably be the relay endpoint hostname. relayPfx option specifies a PFX file used to establish TLS on the relay endpoint relayKey option specifies a private key file used to establish TLS on the relay endpoint relayCert option specifies a certificate key file used to establish TLS on the relay endpoint relayPassphrase specifies password used to protect pfx/key/cert on the relay endpoint

publicTls option enables secure communication with public client using TLS. publicCertCN option sets the Common Name for the server if auto-generating TLS certificates, for the verifyCerts option on the client. This should probably be the public endpoint hostname. publicPfx option specifies a PFX file used to establish TLS on the public endpoint publicKey option specifies a private key file used to establish TLS on the public endpoint publicCert option specifies a certificate key file used to establish TLS on the public endpoint publicPassphrase specifies password used to protect pfx/key/cert on the public endpoint

silent silence outputted logs as the server is executed.

The relay client is meant to be executed on a machine behind a NAT, as follows

nat-traversal-client --targetHost TARGETHOST --targetPort 80 --relayHost RELAYHOST --relayPort 10080 [--relayNumConn count] [--relaySecret key] [--relayTls] [--relayVerifyCert] [--publicTls] [--publicVerifyCert] [--silent]

targetHost is any target server to expose behind the NAT. targetPort is the port of the target server. relayServer is the host name or IP address of the relay server. relayPort is the relay server port where the client will connect.

relaySecret specifies a shared secret key relay client sends to server for the purpose of authorization. relayNumConn is the number of unused connections relay client maintains with the server. As soon as it detects data activity on a socket, it establishes another connection. Servicing internet clients that don't transfer any data may lead to denial of service.

relayTls enables secure TLS communication with the relay server. relayVerifyCert enables checking for valid server certificate on the relay server.

publicTls enables secure TLS communication with the relay server. publicVerifyCert enables checking for valid server certificate on the relay server.

silent silence outputted logs as the client is executed.

Library Usage

Create and start a NAT traversal server thus:

const { NATTraversalServer } = require('nat-traversal');
const natTraversalServer =
    new NATTraversalServer(
        "0.0.0.0",
        10080,
        "0.0.0.0",
        10081,
        {
            relayTls: true,
            relayPfx: "/path/to/pfx/file",
            relayPassphrase: "password of pfx file",
            relaySecret: "a secret sent to the server",
            silent: false
        }
    );
natTraversalServer.start();

Terminate NAT traversal server:

natTraversalServer.terminate();

Create and start a NAT traversal client thus:

const { NATTraversalClient } = require('nat-traversal');
const natTraversalClient =
    new NATTraversalClient(
        "target.service.address.internal",
        80,
        "relay.server.address.com",
        10080,
        {
            relaynumConn: 5,
            relayTls: true,
            relayVerifyCert: true,
            secret: "a secret sent to the server",
            silent: false
        }
    );
natTraversalServer.start();

Terminate NAT traversal client:

natTraversalClient.terminate();

Author

Alon Diamant (advance512)

This package is a heavily refactored (to ES6+ standards) and updated version of node-tcp-relay by tewarid (Devendra Tewari).

Alternatives

  • node-tcp-relay
  • ssh -R
  • VPN