Configuring Mac OS X to access the IT Services VPN Service using the Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client

This document contains instructions on how to obtain, install and configure the Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client (formerly the AnyConnect VPN Client) on Mac OS X 10.5, 10.6 and 10.7 to access the IT Services VPN Service.

In order to use the VPN service, you will need to have the necessary Remote Access Services username and password. For details see the online self registration service page.

If you have any issues using the Cisco AnyConnect VPN client, on 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or 10.7 (Lion) only you can instead configure the native VPN client on Mac OS X.

Please make sure that you have read the introduction and general requirements, which apply to all VPN clients, before attempting to configure your computer or mobile device to connect to the VPN.

1. Installing and Configuring the Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client

1.1. Obtaining the AnyConnect Client Software

In order to use the VPN service you must install the Cisco AnyConnect Client software, which you may download from the IT Services self-registration pages.

  1. Log in to the IT Services self-registration pages at https://register.it.ox.ac.uk/self/software
  2. Select VPN Client from the list and click on Submit.
  3. If you have not registered to use the VPN software, you will be prompted to do so.
  4. Once registered, you should see the VPN Client download page. Select the appropriate download for your operating system and processor type. To check both the operating system and processor type for your Mac select [About this Mac] from the Apple menu and look for the operating system version immediately under Mac OS X. Look at the Processor entry to discover the processor type which will be either Intel or PowerPC. In the picture below the Mac has an operating system of 10.5.8 and it has an Intel processor type.
  5. If you are prompted to choose what to do with the downloaded file, choose the option to [Save] and save the file (called something like anyconnect-vpn-intel-10.5.dmg) to a convenient temporary storage location on your computer's hard disk. Make a note of the file's location.

Use of the VPN client software is restricted to users of the IT Services Remote Access Service only — see the web page Usage Terms for Software Agreements for details.

1.2. Installing the AnyConnect Client Software

The file you download from our website (anyconnect-vpn-intel-10.5.dmg or similar) is a special type of file called a disk image. Depending on the method you use to download the file, a disk image called something like vpn-2.4.0202 may be mounted automatically on your Mac desktop and opened automatically. The installer may also launch automatically in which case you will be prompted with a choice of Cancel or Continue. If this happens you can skip the next couple of steps.

If this doesn't happen automatically you may need to find the file that you downloaded (called anyconnect-vpn-intel-10.5.dmg or similar) and double-click on it to mount the disk image (in this example called vpn-2.4.0202 but the numbers may be different for newer releases).

You may then need to double-click on the disk image (here called vpn-2.4.0202) to see a file called vpn.pkg.

Once you can see the vpn.pkg file, double-click on it to start the VPN client Installer.

Click Continue to acknowledge that you wish to run the installer.

The main vpnclient installer window will appear. Click Continue to start the installer.

The licence agreement appears. Read the licence and click Continue.

You will then be asked whether you agree to the terms of the agreement. If you do, click on Agree to continue with the installation.

The next screen allows you to select the where you want to install the VPN client. Normally you should accept the default location and click Install to start the installation.

You'll probably be asked to enter your password to confirm that you want to install the software. Enter it and click on OK.

Once you do, the installation will start and you'll see the progress of the installation.

VPN normally takes just a few minutes to install and you'll see the final screen. Click on Close to close the installation window.

2. Making the AnyConnect VPN Connection

  1. First make sure that you have connected to the Internet as you usually do, using either your broadband connection or a dialup connection.
  2. Go to your Applications folder and open the Cisco folder.
    Cisco folder
    Figure 1. Cisco folder
  3. The contents of the Cisco folder may look a little different depending on whether you have the current (v3.x) client or an earlier version (v2.x) installed. Both are shown below. Double-click on Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client (v3.x client) or Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client (v2.x client) to start the program.
    Contents of Cisco folder (version 3.x client)
    Figure 2. Contents of Cisco folder (version 3.x client)
    Contents of Cisco folder (version 2.x client)
    Figure 3. Contents of Cisco folder (version 2.x client)
  4. The first time you run the program, you will need to enter vpn.ox.ac.uk and click on Select

    After a couple of seconds you will then be prompted to fill in your username and password. Please remember to use your Remote Access Account details.

    When you run the client next time, the Connect to: box will be populated and you should see the username and password box automatically.

  5. If the connection is successful, you will see a window saying "VPN session established..."

    You will also see an icon in your menu bar. The yellow padlock indicates that the connection is established. The icon will look different depending on whether you are running the older (version 2.x) or the newer (version 3.x) client.

    AnyConnect VPN connected (version 3.x)
    Figure 4. AnyConnect VPN connected (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect VPN connected (version 2.x)
    Figure 5. AnyConnect VPN connected (version 2.x)
  6. While the AnyConnect VPN application is running you might like to right-click or Ctrl-click on the icon in the dock and select [Options/Keep in Dock] (OS X 10.6) or [Keep in Dock] (OS X 10.5) so that it's quicker to start in the future.
    AnyConnect icon in the dock (version 3.x)
    Figure 6. AnyConnect icon in the dock (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect icon in the dock (version 2.x)
    Figure 7. AnyConnect icon in the dock (version 2.x)

3. Closing the AnyConnect VPN Connection

  1. Click on the AnyConnect VPN Connection icon in your menu bar.
    VPN connected (version 3.x)
    Figure 8. VPN connected (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect VPN connected (version 2.x)
    Figure 9. AnyConnect VPN connected (version 2.x)
  2. On the menu that appears, select [Disconnect].
    AnyConnect VPN menu (version 3.x)
    Figure 10. AnyConnect VPN menu (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect VPN menu (version 2.x)
    Figure 11. AnyConnect VPN menu (version 2.x)
  3. The padlock will disappear from the icon. This means that the VPN connection is terminated but that the VPN client software is still loaded.
    AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 3.x)
    Figure 12. AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 2.x)
    Figure 13. AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 2.x)
  4. If you want to reconnect you can click on the AnyConnect VPN Client icon and choose [Connect] or [Bring AnyConnect to Front]to re-open the program. If you want to completely quit the VPN client you choose [Quit] instead. The icon should then disappear from your screen.
    AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 3.x)
    Figure 14. AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 3.x)
    AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 2.x)
    Figure 15. AnyConnect VPN disconnected (version 2.x)
  5. Note that if your internet connection should be interrupted at any time, perhaps because you are using a wireless connection and it has disconnected temporarily, then you will have to re-establish your VPN connection as described above.

4. Further Information

For answers to common questions and solutions to any more frequently encountered problems please see the Frequently Asked Questions for Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client web page. For further information you can also refer to the Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client release notes.

 

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Written by IT Services. Latest revision 22 May 2017