IT uses a system from SonicWall to provide Virtual Private Network (VPN) technology. This tool establishes a secure connection through an otherwise insecure or untrusted network, and extends certain protected network features of the local network to remote or mobile devices.
The VPN has three methods of access, web-based Bookmarks, SonicWall NetExtender, and SonicWall Mobile Connect. Bookmarks are designed to provide access to individual resources (similar to browser bookmarks), while the NetExtender client and Mobile Connect app provide full network access, as if you were physically located on campus. For example:
- The "Valpo Intra website" bookmark provides a way to connect to resources like Campus Chronicle without the burden of multiple logins
- With the SonicWall NetExtender client installed, a Windows PC or a Mac will behave the way it would if it were connected to the Valpo network
- After installing the Mobile Connect app, it runs as a background process in either iOS or Android OS; there's no need to first login through the website
This webpage gives a good overview of what VPN service is, and how it works: https://www.sans.org/security-awareness-training/resources/virtual-private-networks-vpns
Accessing Secure Websites
This VPN client is configured by IT staff to allow you access to Valpo's secure websites and encrypts your activity.
- Connect your computer to an internet connection
- Point your web browser to: vpn.valpo.edu
- At the login page, enter your ValpoNet credentials, select "valpo" in the Domain drop down list, then click "login"
- You may need to enter your username in this format: valpo\username
- You're now connected and can securely access websites
- The Bookmarks list offers quick access to more commonly-used secure websites
VPN is Valpo-only
Valpo's VPN system will only encrypt your connections to other Valpo systems. In order to protect your other online activities, you may wish to subscribe to a paid public VPN service.
Accessing the Full Network
This VPN client allows you to access to Valpo's network resources that aren't web-based, such as network file servers and campus printers. This option requires you to install a small software application on your computer. You should only need to install it once; thereafter, you will only need to login.
Instructions for Windows 10: Use VPN on Windows 10
Instructions for MacOS: Use VPN on MacOS
You can also access your office computer using the appropriate VPN tutorial above (either for Windows or for Mac), then creating a remote desktop connection to your PC. To access your office PC through the VPN web client without installing a VPN desktop client, follow the steps in this tutorial: Remotely Log in to Office PC using VPN Web Client.
If you're having trouble connecting and nothing is working, you may wish to try uninstalling the Sonicwall software, then re-downloading and re-installing it.
You may also wish to try deleting the existing connection and creating a new one.
Still need help?