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VPN Documentation

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Setting up VPN on Mac

Overview of Accessing the Bowdoin Network from off-campus

Note: Before you can use VPN, you must submit a VPN Request Form.

For OSX 10.6.8 and above:

  1. Click on the Apple in the upper left section of the menu bar and choose System Preferences -->Network.
  2. Click the "+" under the network connections box and choose the following:  Interface = VPN, VPN Type= Cisco Ipsec, Service Name= leave the default and click "Create".
  3. Click on the new VPN connection in the box and configure with the following: Server Address = vpn.bowdoin.edu,  Account Name = " your username"@bowdoin.edu,  Password = Leave this empty.
  4. Click the button "Authentication Settings".
  5. For the Shared Secret and the Group Name write down the info from bottom box at this protected link and return here to this page
  6. Be sure to check the box for "Show VPN Status in Menu Bar".
  7. Click "Apply" and close the system preferences window.
  8. In the Menu bar (near the clock) will be the VPN symbol, click it and click "Connect VPN".
  9. Put in your Bowdoin password when prompted. It will say "Connected" when it is complete.
  10. Be sure to "Disconnect VPN" when you are finished connecting to campus.
  11. Please Note: VPN will not connect from ON campus and also will NOT connect if you have not filled out the VPN Request Form and received your approval confirmation email.

For OSX 10.5.8 and below:

1. Install the Cisco VPN client for OSX (software) using the installation file on the "VPN Access" site.

2.  Open the client from the Finder by going to Go > Applications > VPNClient.

vpn client window

3.  Select the connection called "BowdoinCollege" and click the "Connect" button in the toolbar.

mac vpn client window

4.  Enter your Bowdoin email address and password into the prompt that appears and click "OK".

mac vpn client window

You should now be connected to the Bowdoin network using VPN.

Accessing your files:

  • From the Finder, choose Go/Connect to Server...
  • Below "Server Address:", type: smb://microwave/scratch or smb://microwave/yourdept/yourusername
  • Click on the Connect button.
  • When asked to authenticate, type in your regular email user name and password in the appropriate fields and click on OK.
  • A "scratch" icon will appear on your desktop and a "scratch" window will open.
  • Find your file and double click to open it.
Document author:
Nancy Grant
Last modified:
Jul 15, 2014