Edit: As Michael points out in the comments, Oxford users can avoid the mess below by simply disabling hybrid mode.

So there I am, firing up the Advent to read my email between lectures when...

$ sudo vpn-connect oxford
vpnc-connect was built without openssl: Can't do hybrid or cert mode.

Gah? The VPN client has always worked in the past, but following the upgrade to Ubuntu Intrepid, it doesn't. A quick search lead to a solution which can be summarised as:

$ cd /tmp
$ apt-get source vpnc
$ cd vpnc-0.5.1r275
$ $EDITOR Makefile

Uncomment the lines beginning with OPENSSL
Read this and despair for the future of open source software

$ sudo apt-get build-dep vpnc
$ dpkg-buildpkg

Wonder why it all collapses in a heap
Search and find this.

$ apt-get install libssl-dev
$ dpkg-buildpkg
$ cd ..
$ sudo dpkg -i vpnc_0.5.1r275-1ubuntu1_i386.deb

Wonder why this has changed between Hardy and Intrepid
Seriously consider going back to Windows on this machine.