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University Technology Services

UTS

Virtual Private Networking – for Students

Information for students on McMaster’s Virtual Private Network (VPN) and the Alibaba VPN Global Accelerator for students in mainland China.

If you have any questions, or are unable to resolve your issue, support can be received via the Service Desk

Service Desk

What is a VPN?

Virtual Private Network (VPN) software allows you to connect to the campus network from an off-campus computer and access devices, software, and networks that are normally not available from off campus. It also provides extra security by encrypting data to and from your computer, in effect creating a private tunnel through the Internet for your communication.

How much does it cost?

There is no cost associated with this service.

Service Availability

24/7

Who can use it?

In most cases, students do not require a VPN to access core learning resources. 

  • McMaster has created an express VPN with an attached Alibaba Global Accelerator to improve speed and consistency of network access for students in mainland China. Information on the express.mcmaster.ca VPN service below.
  • In special cases, students outside of China (international or domestic) could require VPN to access certain resources only available from on campus. Information on the studentvpn.mcmaster.ca service for those special circumstances is available below.

How to get it

Refer below and follow the steps that are right for you.

Express VPN for students located in China

Common questions and answers about the VPN and network accelerator service for students in mainland China.

Access is granted to all McMaster staff, faculty and students in mainland China with a MACID and enrolled in current term courses. Use this service only to access McMaster University resources from within mainland China. Others will not benefit from using this service.

Select the appropriate download link for your operating system/device:

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Windows 9.9MB 6/26/2019 4.7.04056 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Mac OS X (Includes 10.15 11.9MB 10/21/2019 4.8.00175 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Linux x64 23.7MB 2/6/2019 4.6.04056 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
iPhone 46.1MB 9/26/2016 4.0.05055 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Android 12.68MB 3/1/2017 4.0.05062 Download

Note: If you are not attempting to connect to McMaster University resources from within China please do not use this service.

  • Download the Cisco VPN client using the instructions for your device (see last section of this page). Choose the version appropriate for your Operating System.
  • Run the installer to install the software on your computer. Accept all the defaults until finished.
  • Open the AnyConnect VPN Client.
  • Type express.mcmaster.ca and then click Connect. When prompted, enter your MAC ID (username and password). Read the banner messages for current notifications.
    Important – from within China you must use the name express.mcmaster.ca to connect through the Alibaba Global Accelerator service.

  • To end your session, click Disconnect in the application window.

The Express VPN is connected to an Alibaba Global Accelerator system that enhances the student experience by providing a lower latency connection to McMaster University services for those connecting from mainland China. This optional service allows for a fast, reliable, and consistent connection to McMaster’s network and in turn its online learning resources.

Yes, McMaster faculty located in mainland China can access the Alibaba VPN Global Accelerator service with a valid MAC ID.

Yes. A valid MACID is required for all McMaster faculty and students to log into the service.

Alibaba VPN Global Accelerator provides access to McMaster hosted site and Gmail. Other services like social media are accessed through your regular Internet provider regardless of whether your VPN service is activated or not.

For technical support with the Alibaba VPN Global Accelerator service, please visit the Technology Services web site at https://uts.mcmaster.ca/contact-us/ 

General Student VPN (for special cases)

In some cases, a student VPN could be required to access certain resources only available from on campus. Information on the studentvpn.mcmaster.ca service for those special circumstances is available below. This service is for any student outside of China who requires it.

Students located in China should use the express service outlined in the section above. 

In special cases, a student VPN could be required to access certain resources only available from on campus. Out of an abundance of caution and in preparation for the fall term, UTS has created a VPN (studentvpn.mcmaster.ca) to support any student, domestic or international, requiring a VPN.

 

Select the appropriate download link for your operating system/device:

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Windows 9.9MB 6/26/2019 4.7.04056 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Mac OS X (Includes 10.15 11.9MB 10/21/2019 4.8.00175 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Linux x64 23.7MB 2/6/2019 4.6.04056 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
iPhone 46.1MB 9/26/2016 4.0.05055 Download

 

 

Operating System Size Updated Version Download
Android 12.68MB 3/1/2017 4.0.05062 Download

Note: If you are located within China, please use the instructions for the express.mcmaster.ca VPN service above. Students located outside of this region should use the following instructions if they require a VPN:

  • Check if you can access your learning materials without VPN first.
  • Download the Cisco VPN client using the instructions for your device (see last section of this page). Choose the version appropriate for your Operating System.
  • Run the installer to install the software on your computer. Accept all the defaults until finished.
  • Open the AnyConnect VPN Client.
  • Type studentvpn.mcmaster.ca and then click Connect. When prompted, enter your MACID (username and password). Read the banner messages for current notifications.studentVPN
  • To end your session, click Disconnect in the application window.