In order to allow you to run more than one tinc daemon on one computer, for instance if your computer is part of more than one VPN, you can assign a netname to your VPN. It is not required if you only run one tinc daemon, it doesn’t even have to be the same on all the sites of your VPN, but it is recommended that you choose one anyway.
We will assume you use a netname throughout this document. This means that you call tincd with the -n argument, which will assign a netname to this daemon.
The effect of this is that the daemon will set its configuration root to /etc/tinc/netname/, where netname is your argument to the -n option. You’ll notice that it appears in syslog as tinc.netname.
However, it is not strictly necessary that you call tinc with the -n option. In this case, the network name would just be empty, and it will be used as such. tinc now looks for files in /etc/tinc/, instead of /etc/tinc/netname/; the configuration file should be /etc/tinc/tinc.conf, and the host configuration files are now expected to be in /etc/tinc/hosts/.
But it is highly recommended that you use this feature of tinc, because it will be so much clearer whom your daemon talks to. Hence, we will assume that you use it.