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VPN: Connecting to your computer remotely

May 30, 2012 by Sara Nagreen

This is for people running Windows.  If you're on a Mac and want to connect remotely, please email the Techzone ( for assistance.

There are two steps.

Prepare your WORK computer
Prepare your HOME computer

Prepare your WORK Computer

1. First, contact your support organization ( and tell them you want to set up remote access to your work computer.  To set up remote access, you will need a strong password on your user account and a static network number for your computer. 

OR: You can use these instructions to create your own User Password

OR: You can use these instructions to determine your own IP number

2. Next, go to your system control panel (Start, Control Panels, System).

  • Click on the Remote Tab.
  • Make sure to check the box that is marked here.  
  • Then click "Select Remote Users."
  • Click the "Add" button.
  • Click the "Advanced" button.
  • Click the "Find Now" button.
  • Click on you account name.
  • Hit OK 4 times to finish.

Connecting from HOME

1. You must download and install the following piece of software.


This allows you to connect to the University from your home in a secure way and it also allows this connection your Windows XP computer.

After this is installed, you'll need to reboot.

After you reboot, you need to open the newly installed Cisco Systems VPN Client (which is probably in your Programs on your Start Menu) and connect using the profile called "WiscVPN-OnCampus".

It will connect to the UW, and ask for your NetID and password. This is the same id and password that your email client uses.

2. Once you have connected to that, you can initiate the Remote Connection.

To do that, click on the Start Button, and choose Accessories off of the Programs menu. In Accessories is something called Remote Desktop Connection.

Click that.

3. Use the remote IP number that has been provided to you by your administrator, and type it here, like this...

That is...separated by spaces. The numbers will be between 1-255.

Then click connect. You'll be prompted for your username on the remote (aka work) computer and your password on the remote (aka work) computer.

You need to know both. If you don't have a password set on your account, you really should. Without it, anyone can get into your computer! Please talk to your administrator about how to do this if you aren't sure.

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