VPN, CISCO AnyConnect, Default server is incorrect in dropdown menu, Windows, Mac

These steps are best used for when the default server is not vpn.illinois.edu upon start up.


1.  Log in to the VPN normally per the instructions at VPN, CISCO AnyConnect, Installation Instructions for Windows 7, 8, 10, 11 .

2.  Open a Windows Explorer window.

3.  Copy this file path: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Cisco\Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client

or %USERPROFILE%AppData\Local\Cisco\Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client if not installed on a C: drive.
4.  Paste the copied path into the Address Bar in Windows Explorer.

5.  Press Enter.

6.  Right-click the preferences.xml file and select Edit

7. Edit the Default Host Name line (by default, this line reads <DefaultHostName></DefaultHostName>) to the following: <DefaultHostName>vpn.illinois.edu</DefaultHostName>

8.  Click File > Save.

9.  Quit the VPN client by right-clicking the Cisco AnyConnect icon in the system tray (left of the clock) and select Quit.

10. Re-open the Cisco AnyConnect client by selecting it from the Start Menu

11. vpn.illinois.edu should automatically populate in the text box.

Optional: In step 7, you can also edit the Default User line to include your username by adding the following: <DefaultUser>netid</DefaultUser>

  1. Quit AnyConnect
  2. In Finder use Go->Go to Folder... to open this directory: /opt/cisco/anyconnect/profile where you will find one or more files that end in .xml 
  3. Copy the xml files to the Desktop or another folder, leaving no .xml files in this directory
  4. Start AnyConnect, type vpn.illinois.edu and connect.  This will download an updated copy of the .xml file for the profile you are using.
  5. Quit AnyConnect and relaunch - you should now see vpn.illinois.edu either pre-filled in, or in the pulldown menu of choices.

Keywords:VPN CISCO connect   Doc ID:47202
Owner:Network E.Group:University of Illinois Technology Services
Created:2015-02-15 17:40 CDTUpdated:2022-03-23 14:10 CDT
Sites:University of Illinois Technology Services
Feedback:  29   4