VPN Instructions for Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client

This page is intended for Extension staff and contains VPN-related instructions for off-campus, Illinois network connectivity.

The VPN software required to connect to the Illinois network from home is called Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client (ie Cisco VPN).  This is pre-installed on most of our Extension computers.  

Check that Cisco VPN is installed

Before seeking to install Cisco VPN for yourself, please visit the Windows menu and begin typing to search for "Cisco..." OR find the program in the alphabetical list of programs.

Download and Install Cisco VPN

If you are using an Extension computer that does not have Cisco VPN installed, please submit a help ticket for Extension IT to assist you. 
If you are using a personal computer running Windows, please follow the instructions below:
  • Download the package from the Webstore.
    • This will require logging in, adding the free product to your cart, and checking out your cart.
    • Download the Windows version included in the product page.
  • Install the program by double-clicking the downloaded product.
    • You may receive the User Account Control prompt asking if you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer. If so, click Yes.
    • The Setup Wizard will launch. Click Next.
    • The End User License Agreement (EULA) will prompt you to accept the terms. Choose "I accept..." and click Next.
    • The installation window will run its course and complete. You may be prompted to reboot your computer.

Starting Cisco VPN

  • Run the program from your Windows menu.
    • Tip: To add Cisco VPN to your taskbar, right-click the program from the Windows menu, hover over More, and click "Pin to Taskbar."
  • The first field for VPN server should read: vpn.illinois.edu
  • Click the Connect button.
  • Username: your netID
  • Password: your password
  • Group: 1_SplitTunnel_Default 
    • This is the most common choice and should be sufficient for Extension accesses. See About VPN Profiles for information about the alternatives.
  • The Cisco VPN icon in the icon tray will display a Lock symbol to indicate Connection.
    • The icon tray is found via the "upward arrow" near the Time and Date display.

Disconnecting from Cisco VPN

When you are finished using the VPN connection, disconnect it. 
  • Click on the icon tray.
  • Click the Cisco VPN icon.
  • In the window that appears, click the Disconnect button.

Additional Notes

  • Access with Cisco VPN should last for 24 hours before prompting you again for your password.  This may time out earlier if your computer is idle for 3 hours.
  • The Shared Drive may appear to have a red X to indicate disconnectedness, especially if your Connection timed out.  Reconnecting should enable you to access the Shared Drive despite the appearance of the X.

Keywords:VPN, Cisco, AnyConnect, Windows, Work from Home, WFH, Shared Drive   Doc ID:99063
Owner:Jane K.Group:University of Illinois Extension KB
Created:2020-03-18 14:07 CDTUpdated:2021-08-26 15:14 CDT
Sites:University of Illinois Extension KB
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