Using VPN to Connect to the UTMB Network

The use of UTMB's VPN (Virtual Private Network) solution allows you to access campus applications and network services protected behind the UTMB firewall, no matter your location. Your Trusted Requestor must make a Tivoli request for VPN access on your behalf. Access is generally granted within a few minutes of the request.

UTMB employees and students must install VPN client software on their device in order to connect, and the use of Duo two-factor authentication is also required—we recommend configuring Duo first.

  • AnyConnect Overview



    • What is a VPN?
      VPN stands for "Virtual Private Network," and it enables you to operate as if your remote device was directly connected to the UTMB network. UTMB's VPN will create an encrypted connection between your remote device and a server inside the UTMB network. You might use your home computer, a UTMB-issued laptop, or a mobile device.
    • What will VPN do for me?

      During the time you are connected, the VPN will provide your computer with a UTMB IP address. This will enable access to applications and services which are available only within the UTMB network.

      For example, a VPN connection will allow you to:

      • Connect to your UTMB workstation from a non-UTMB computer using Microsoft Remote Desktop, and use it as if you were physically at your desk. All applications that you run at work should be available remotely.  Hint: Before attempting to connect remotely, check with the IS ServiceDesk at (409) 772-5200 to make sure your UTMB computer is set to allow remote access, and that you know its machine name or network address.
      • Access and use resources like web sites or web-based applications on the UTMB intranet, departmental or personal file shares, printers, etc. from a non-UTMB computer.
    • How do I get access to UTMB's VPN?
      Your Trusted Requestor must make a request in ITIM, on your behalf. The good news is that access is auto-provisioned, meaning the request is approved and granted almost immediately.
    • How much time will it take for me to install the VPN software and get started?
      The install is fairly automated, but it does require some pointing, clicking and typing on your part.
    • Will I always follow these same instructions to connect to the VPN?
      Fortunately, no. You just need to double-click the VPN application icon in the System Tray, select Connect, then authorize the VPN connection using Duo. You should then be able to reach resources on the UTMB network.
    • I installed the VPN, but I can't see any UTMB resources. What is wrong?
      Check the set-up instructions again. It's likely that you just need to double-click the VPN application icon and select Connect, then authorize the VPN connection using Duo. You should now be able to reach resources on the UTMB network.
    • If I have problems with the VPN can I uninstall it from my PC?
      Yes. However, the next time you connect to it will have to be re-installed.
    • How do I know if my VPN connection is secure?
      The VPN is encrypted by default, and it's a point-to-point connection—if you are able to access an internal UTMB system, then your connection is both encrypted and secure.
    • How does the VPN impact my home network?
      In order to assure a secure connection, the VPN will not allow a connected computer to share files, printers, or connections with other devices on its home network at the same time it is connected to UTMB's network. The sharing functions are only disabled while the PC is connected to UTMB.
    • I routinely connect to another non-UTMB network, but I can't while the VPN is connected. What is wrong?
      Nothing at all. In order to assure a secure connection the VPN will not allow a computer to share files, printers, or connect with another network at the same time it is connected to UTMB. Sharing is disabled only while the PC is connected to UTMB. To gain access to your networked home printer or other resources, or connect to another network, double-click on the VPN application icon and select Disconnect.
    • Will the VPN connection be as fast as my office connection?
      No, sorry. You may perceive a slight improvement due to added data compression, but the VPN operates no faster than the speed of your home Internet connection (or wherever you are connecting from).
    • Does the VPN make my home PC act like my office PC?
      Possibly. The VPN provides the access needed to to map UTMB drives, access files, and run UTMB applications. It does not set up these resources for you, however.
    • Do I have to run virus and malware protection software on my PC to use the VPN?
      We strongly suggest you always run a virus and malware protection program on your home computer. UTMB provides protection software on all UTMB-issued computers.
    • Can my PC run the same login script that runs in my office to map my drives?
      No, you will need a different login script—please contact the ITS ServiceDesk at (409) 772-5200 for assistance.
    • Can I map drives without a login script?
      Yes, the VPN supports mapping drives using either server names or IP numbers.
    • Is there a timeout value for the VPN connection?
      Yes, there is a 30-minute inactivity timer and a 10-hour session limit that will disconnect your computer from the VPN. You'll be asked to re-authenticate when you attempt to reconnect to VPN.
    • I received a warning after I disconnected from the VPN server that there was a possible data loss due to a delayed write. What should I do?
      It's prudent to close any open applications a minute or so before disconnecting the VPN client. In Windows operating systems, some applications do not write data right away. If you disconnect your VPN immediately after exiting such a program (Outlook, for example), data may be lost.
    • How do I map my network drive letters?


      1. Right click on my network places and select Map Network Drive
      2. Chose a drive letter
      3. Put in the path to the share you are trying to map: \\Server\Share; Example \\utmbf5\jdoe$ or \\utmbf2\files.
      4. Make sure the Reconnect at Logon box is checked.
      5. Under the Reconnect at Logon check box, there is a sentence that says “Connect using a different user name.” Click on the portion of the sentence that is underlined (different user name).
      6. Connect As window appears.
      7. In the username field, enter your UTMB credentials like this: utmb-users-m\username
      8. In the password field, put in your UTMB password.
      9. Select OK and Finish. Your drive mapping should establish.
      10. Your VPN connection must be established for these drive mappings to successfully connect.
      11. Be sure and Disconnect from the VPN when your session is finished.
      12. The next time you log on to your machine, you may see a notification that the workstation cannot reconnect to the drive mapping. Just select OK.
      13. You’ll get a pop-up for each VPN drive mapping you created. Select OK for each one.
      14. The net time you Connect to VPN and try to access any of your drive mappings, you will be prompted to enter your UTMB credentials.
      15. The drive mapping will reconnect once your UTMB credentials are accepted and you have approved the Duo notification.