This article briefly describes how you can setup the Giganews VPN (PPTP) on Ubuntu. I'm gonna assume
10.04 (that's what I tested with) and the gnome desktop.
Does this sound familiar: The VPN connection 'xxxxx' failed because there were no valid VPN secrets.
If so then I'm hoping this article will help you.
What is a VPN for?
The use-case for a VPN — and this is for basically any VPN (not just Giganews' service) — is security. For example, for online banking when you use public WIFI at airports, train stations or your favorite coffee place.
Unless the VPN service itself is blocked, a VPN also provides real and unfiltered Internet access. No bogus blocks or censorships because your goverment thought they need to protect you.
From a development perspective using different VPNs also allow me to easily test location-based services. And it doesn't stop there — for example since I work for people in the U.S. we often run into issues with services which we use which do things different to me because of my location. A VPN in the U.S. fixes that for me.
And there are more and more use-cases once you think about it.