UCSD has expanded its virtual private network (VPN) service to allow you to establish a secure connection to the network of UCSD from any location in the world.

This, as a result, lets you access remote desktops on Windows, Mac, and others.

This guide will help you connect and log in to the UCSD library and campus resources.

  1. How to Configure the UCSD VPN Client for Windows 10
  2. How to Configure the UCSD VPN Client for Mac OS
  3. What are VPN Pools?

What Does UCSD VPN Do?

By forming an isolated virtual connection, the UCSD VPN makes sure of the following:

  • Only certain authorized people are able to access the campus networks.
  • There is no foreign interference or interruption while transmitting the data.

UCSD VPN does so by applying encryptions and various security checks. When you are trying to connect to the campus network from outside, it goes through an encrypted connection that gives your remote device a UCSD IP address.

Once you obtain the appropriate IP address, you’ll be able to remotely access campus resources from anywhere remotely.

How to Connect to UCSD’s VPN?

You can connect to UCSD VPN by using any one of the two services, namely: AnyConnect (Cisco software VPN client) and EasyConnect (web-based VPN portal).

  1. By using VPN AnyConnect: Download the AnyConnect client by following the method of conventional installation in various systems such as Windows (10, 8, 7, etc.), Mac OS X 10.10, Chromebook, or GNU/Linux and connect via the client.
  2. By using EasyConnect: You don’t have to download the client in this case as this is a web-based interface. You only have to follow these steps:
  3. Go to https://vpn.ucsd.edu.
  4. Enter your active directory (AD) username and password.
  5. Chose EasyConnect from the given options and press sign-on.
  6. Now you can access the services provided by the campus network.

For iPhone, iPod and iPad, use this source in order to access the VPN.

If you need to reset your AD (Active Directory) username or password, simply visit https://adweb.ucsd.edu/adpass/ or contact the system administrator for your department.

How to Configure the UCSD VPN Client for Windows 10

  1. Start with downloading the AnyConnect VPN client from this link.
  2. Once done, run the setup and begin the installation.
  3. Accepting the license agreement is mandatory, so accept the license.
  4. Click continue installation and once done click finish.
  5. Now run the AnyConnect client by clicking on the  Windows button.
  6. Choose the Cisco Folder. Proceed with selecting the Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client to launch.
  7. Authenticate with UCSD VPN using DUO 2-Step Authentication.
  8. By clicking disconnect, you can easily disconnect from the UCSD network.

How to Configure the UCSD VPN Client for Mac OS

The process is quite similar to the UCSD configuration for Windows 10, however, the following are the steps that need to be done before the installation begins:

  1. Uninstall the old client, since Mac OS 10.10.x and above has that preinstalled.
  2. Download the AnyConnect client for Mac from this link
  3. Begin the installation and the process is quite similar to that of Windows

What are VPN Pools?

The VPN creates certain pools of data that are exclusive for each department. This way the department heads can control access to each department’s resources to ensure maximum security of data/resources.

If you are looking for further guidance about these pools and their accessibility, you can consult with your department’s IT staff. If there is no IT staff at hand, you can contact the ITS Service desk.

In order to access a VPN pool, you just have to enter your username, followed by ‘@’ the pool name.

What Are VPNs in General?

Well, VPNs are Virtual Private Networks. These networks allow users to privately access remote servers. We say private because VPNs offer encryption. Popular VPNs use a variety of  VPN protocols such as OpenVPN and use powerful 256-bit encryption to all incoming and outgoing network traffic.

In general, one of the major use cases of VPNs is geo-block bypassing, followed by privacy.

Now there are tons of VPNs in the industry. Some are free, others are budget-friendly and there are also high-end VPNs. That said, not all of them can be trusted.

Speaking of which, here’s our top recommendation:

  • Surfshark – Most Affordable VPN. Starts from just $2.30/mo. Offers 3200+ servers in 65 countries. Tested to offer speeds of up to 47.83 Mbps (50 Mbps standard connection). Supports unlimited simultaneous connections and also offers a full 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • ExpressVPNPremium VPN. Come with 3000+ servers in 94 countries that offer powerful security and support both torrenting, and streaming. Offers features such as AES 256-bit encryption, kill switch, no-logs, and DNS leak protection. Can be used on 5 devices simultaneously. Fast enough to offer speeds of up to 40.43 Mbps (50 Mbps standard connection). Comes with a free smart DNS – MediaStreamer feature. Costs just $8.32/mo and comes with a 30-day risk-free money-back guaranteeLimited time offer: Get 3 months free subscription with its annual plan.

  • NordVPN – Most Secure VPN. Comes with powerful security features such as Nordlynx, AES 256-bit encryption, kill switch, CyberSec, and obfuscated servers. Offers an audited strict no-logging policy. Offers 5200+ servers in 59+ countries. Fast enough to offer speeds of up to 36.43 Mbps (50 Mbps standard connection). Costs just $3.29/mo, supports 6 multi-logins, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • CyberGhost – Easy to Use VPN. Incredibly intuitive to use on iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, and more. Comes with a massive 7700+ server network in 90+ countries. Easily cable of delivering fast speeds of up to 46.13 Mbps (50 Mbps standard connection). Costs just $2.29/mo, offers 7 multi-logins per subscription, and offers an extensive 45-day money-back guarantee.