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Setting up VPN on Windows

Overview of Accessing the Bowdoin Network from off-campus

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

Instructions for Windows XP
Instructions for Windows 7
How to Access your files from the Bowdoin microwave server

Windows XP:

  • From the VPN Access site, download the "Cisco VPN client for Windows XP" to your computer's desktop
  • Double-click the Bowdoin VPN icon on your desktop to start the installer.
  • Follow the prompts in the installer window until it is finished.


Open the client either by double clicking on the VPN Client icon in the notifications area of the task bar, or by going to Start/Programs/Cisco Systems VPN Client /VPN Client.

  • Select the connection called "BowdoinCollege" and click the "Connect" button in the toolbar.
vpn client window
  • Enter your Bowdoin email address and password into the prompt that appears and click "OK".
vpn client window
  • You should now be connected to the Bowdoin network using VPN. The VPN icon in the notifications area of the taskbar should appear "locked".

vpn image

Windows 7 32bit & 64bit:

  • From the "VPN Access" site, download the "Cisco VPN client for Windows 7 64bit" to your computer's desktop.
  • Double-click  the "bowdoinvpnclient-win7.exe" icon on your desktop to start the installer
  • Follow the prompts in the installer window until it is finished.
  • To start the VPN, go to the Windows Start Menu/All Programs/Cisco Systems VPN Client folder.
  • Click on VPN Client to open the VPN software.
  • Click on Bowdoin VPN.  
  • Click on Connect
  • Type in your Bowdoin email address in the username field (username@bowdoin.edu)
  • Type in your Bowdoin Password.
  • Click OK
  • You should now be connected to the Bowdoin network using vpn.

How to Access your files from the Bowdoin microwave server:

Windows XP

  • From the "Start" menu, choose Run...
  • The Run window will appear. In the Open: field, type: \\microwave\scratch or \\microwave\yourdept\yourusername and click on OK.
  • At the login prompt, for your username, use: username@bowdoincollege.edu. In the password field, type your usual password.
  • A new window, "SCRATCH on microwave" will open.
  • Find your file and double click to open it.

Windows 7

  • Click the Windows button menu, and in the field at the bottom of the window, type:  \\microwave\scratch or \\microwave\yourdept\yourusername
  • At the login prompt, for your username, use: username@bowdoincollege.edu. In the password field, type your usual password.
  • The folder you want access to will appear at the top of the window. 
  • Double-click it to view and access the contents.
Document author:
Nancy Grant
Last modified:
Jul 15, 2014