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How to Install and use VPN to connect to some restricted information services that require on-campus access, such as file servers, databases, websites, and privileged applications.

Table of Contents

On most college-owned computers that were on our Campus Network during the month of November 2020, the software was likely installed automatically installed on the computer. It can manually be installed from our self service applications when you are connected to the campus network.  See below for more information on the self service applications if you are on campus or the Off Campus instructions to manually download and install if you are off campus. 

Install the VPN Client

On Campus installation for Campus Owned Devices (faculty/staff) 

Macs

  1. Check your Applications folder to see if the Geneseo VPN Client has already been installed.
    1. If the software has already been installed, see the Making a VPN Connection Below
  2. If it has not already been installed, use the CIT Self Service application to install the Geneseo VPN Client from the Featured section.
  3. Once the software has been installed, please refer to the Making a VPN Connection section below.

Windows

  1. Check your Applications folder (or do a Search) to see if the Big-IP Edge Client has already been installed.
    1. If the software has already been installed, see the Making a VPN Connection Below
  2. If it has not already been installed, use the Software Center, if you are on campus (see instructions below if you are off campus) to install the "F5 Networks - Big-IP Edge Client" software on your Windows PC.
  3. Once the software has been installed, please refer to the Making a VPN Connection section below. 

Off Campus installation on both College Owned Devices and Personal Devices (students, faculty, and staff)

Have a temporary need?

Use the web based VPN for occasional access. If you connect to VPN frequently from your computer, follow the instructions below to install the full client for your system.

macOS

  1. Download the macOS VPN client installation application

  2. Right Click on the file and choose to open the downloaded file with the installer app
  3. Click Continue to start the installation
  4. Select Continue to choose the default installation location
  5. Select Install to begin the installation
  6. Select Close to complete the VPN Client installation
  7. Select Move to Trash to delete the VPN client installer app

Windows

  1. Download the Windows VPN client installation application

  2. Open the downloaded file
  3. Select Next to begin the installation
  4. Select Choose Setup Type
  5. Select Typical to choose the default install
  6. Select Install
  7. For Do you want to allow the following program to install software on this computer?, select Yes.
  8. You may receive a Pop up message that "Windows protected your PC" because the app is unrecognized.
     
  9. Select the More info link to confirm that it is okay to run the installer by clicking on the "Run Anyway" button
  10. Select Close to complete the VPN Client installation

Using a mobile device?

To install VPN on your Android, iPad, iPhone or other mobile device, please reference this Self Help Document.

Making a VPN Connection

For the best internet performance, connect to VPN only for the services you need and then disconnect when you are finished. Please reference the section below on when a VPN connection is needed. 

  1. To start a VPN connection on a Mac - open the Geneseo VPN Client application from within your Applications folder.
  2. To start a VPN connection on a Windows PC - open the BIG-IP Edge Client application (use the Windows Search field or Circle in the bottom left of your task bar).
    Since this software requires Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), you may be prompted to log in with your Geneseo username and password (most college-managed computers will try to pass on the credentials from the person who currently logged into the computer to authenticate).
  3. The software should automatically connect to the VPN server and you can then access the services that require on-campus access.
  4. When you're done using the service, it is best to disconnect from the VPN as described below:
    1. macOS
      1. Click on the shield-shaped VPN icon in the menu bar at the top of your screen
      2. Select Turn VPN Off
    2. Windows
      1. Click on the gray and black VPN icon that looks like an ethernet port on the Windows taskbar
      2. Select the Disconnect button

For Windows computers, to keep the VPN icon in the taskbar for easy access, when you do a search for "BIG-IP Edge Client", when it comes up in the search list, right click on it and select "Pin to taskbar".

For Macs - to keep the VPN icon in your Dock, drag the Geneseo VPN Client from your Applications folder to your Dock and it will make a shortcut to it that stays there.

More Info

What is VPN?

At SUNY Geneseo, many information services can be used anywhere, but some are restricted to on-campus access, such as file servers, databases, websites, and privileged applications. Anyone who needs to use these campus-only services can either physically travel to the campus or connect remotely through a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN provides a secure, encrypted connection from an off-campus computer or device to Geneseo's on-campus network.

When do I need to use VPN?

The following list is a sample of Geneseo services and systems that require a VPN connection from off campus:

  • Xtender
  • Appworx
  • EMS desktop client
  • Files server - including in/out boxes and personal, departmental, and project spaces
  • Accessing Select Library databases
  • Software licensed by the campus (ArcGIS Desktop, Mathcad, MATLAB, Minitab, Spartan, SPSS, Vectorworks)
  • Printing to a campus networked printer

Troubleshooting

Windows Stuck "Initializing"

If the Windows Big-IP Edge Client is stuck "Initializing" there may be an issue with the "WAN Miniport (IP)" device that was created during installation.  To correct this issue you can uninstall/reinstall the WAN Miniport and then reboot the computer.  You can follow this guide: https://support.f5.com/csp/article/K10445740#Miniport_update

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More Help

For questions, contact the CIT HelpDesk by calling (585) 245-5588, or visiting our online service desk.