VPN (Virtual Private Networking) overview
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VPN (Virtual Private Networking) overview
Solution: What is VPN?

A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is a method of using encryption and other security means to secure data when using public lines. See details below.


Why use VPN?

There are several reasons to use a VPN connection:

  • Security: There are a number of types of network access that allow data sent between your computer and Miami's network to be easily intercepted. (See the Who Can/Should use VPN? section below for details.) VPN encrypts some or all network traffic. Encrypted traffic may still be intercepted, but it cannot be easily decoded.

  • Access: Miami has an Internet firewall that restricts the functions that can be performed by computers that are NOT directly connected to Miami's network. VPN allows a computer connecting from off campus to behave as if it is on campus.

What Operating Systems are Supported?

  • Windows 8 (32-bit and 64-bit versions)
  • Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit versions)
  • Windows Vista w/Service Pack 2+ (32-bit and 64-bit versions)
  • Mac OS 10.4 or greater
  • * Linux (depending on distribution)

Detailed System Requirements are available in Cisco's AnyConnect release notes.

* While the client will work for some Linux distributions, these are not officially supported by Miami. If you are having trouble with this software, send a request using the 'No, I need help' button at the bottom of this page for 'best-effort' assistance.

Who Can/Should Use VPN?

Any member of the Miami community with an active Miami UniqueID and MUnet Password can use Miami's VPN service. If you are a guest at Miami, you can use Guest Access (from the wireless network service or the residence hall network) and then use an external VPN service via IPSec or SSL over VPN (Microsoft VPN will not work). More information about using Miami's Guest Access is available in the Knowledge Base.

  • When connecting to Miami VPN, all network traffic to Miami's network will be protected; non-Miami traffic, traffic destined for the rest of the Internet, will leave your machine as it normally would.

Following are situations in which you may wish to use VPN and the appropriate configuration file for each situation:

  • Wireless users
    Because of fundamental insecurities in any wireless networking system, wireless users are strongly encouraged to use VPN if they want to access MU resources and the Internet.

  • Remote access wired users (eg. through third-party ISPs, like Roadrunner/Zoomtown)
    If you use a third-party ISP such as a Road Runner or Zoomtown to connect to Miami's network, Miami VPN is the only way for you to obtain an on-campus IP address to gain access to systems which require Miami IPs.

Some content in this article is gleaned from the University of Illinois, CITES VPN Information Page. Used with permission.

Related Items:

Installing the Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client

Symptoms: what is vpn | do i need vpn

Keywords: 6679 VPN Virtual Private Networking

Applies To: VPN | Student Resources

Solution ID: 040972654006679@kpol17 Last Modified Date: 03/26/2014 03:44:23 PM

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