VPN (GlobalProtect)

Our VPN (GlobalProtect) service lets you:

  • securely access services that are only accessible when on the University's network
  • use Remote Desktop

Who can use VPN

Set up and use VPN (GlobalProtect)

On University devices

Most University devices come with GlobalProtect installed and should automatically connect when you log in to your device. If this isn't the case for you, then follow these steps to get set up:

  1. Go to software.essex.ac.uk and sign in with your University username (eg  jb2000) and password. If this is your first time using the Software Hub, please follow the setup instructions shown on screen.
  2. Use the search box at the top of the page and search for Global Protect VPN
  3. Click or hover over Global Protect VPN and select Install to begin installation.
  4. Once installed, open GlobalProtect from your start menu. On Windows, you can quickly open GlobalProtect from the GlobalProtect icon in your notification area (bottom- right). On macOS, the icon will appear in the top menu bar.
  5. Check that Portal is set to byodportal.essex.ac.uk and then select Connect.
  6. You may then be asked to sign in with your University IT account.
  7. After signing you will be connected to VPN.

Detailed instructions with screenshots are available at:

On personal devices

Windows and macOS

  1. Go to byodportal.essex.ac.uk (you may be asked to sign in with your University IT account) and then download and install the GlobalProtect agent for your device.
  2. Once installed, open GlobalProtect and enter byodportal.essex.ac.uk for the Portal addressand then select Connect.
  3. You may be asked to sign in with your University IT account again. Shortly after signing in, you’ll connect to the VPN.

Android and iOS

  1. Install the GlobalProtect app for Android or iOS.
  2. Enter byodportal.essex.ac.uk for the portal address.
  3. Sign in with your University IT account.
  4. Select OK for the connection request.
  5. After a few moments you will connect to the VPN.


There are three options for installing on Linux depending on the distribution you run. Follow the appropriate instructions below to obtain the software and install the software:

Your VPN access permissions

Check your VPN permissions (sign-in required) to see what you can currently access.

If you need to request access to something please contact the IT Helpdesk.

Remote Desktop (RDP)

Once connected to the VPN you will be able to use Remote Desktop (RDP).


How to update your home computer to trust new University security certificates

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