The Cisco VPN Client for Windows 10 allows you to connect to a Cisco VPN service using the all-new Cisco Connect application. Whether you use public Wi-Fi or a VPN, your computer, tablet, or phone will be able to access content restricted by Cisco. So let’s get started!
Install The Cisco VPN Client
The first step is to install the Cisco VPN Client on your computer, tablet, or phone. You can download it directly from Cisco here. In order to use the Cisco VPN Client, you’ll also need to install the Cisco Connect application on your device. You can download that from Cisco here as well.
With both of these applications installed, you’re ready to connect to a Cisco VPN service and start protecting your sensitive data. Before we begin, make sure that you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network and that the network and Wi-Fi passwords have not been written down by anyone. Also, make sure that your firewall software is set to allow the Cisco VPN Client to communicate with the Cisco Connect application.
Create A Cisco VPN Account
If you already have a Cisco account, you can use that instead of creating a new one. If not, you’ll need to create a new account. You can do this either through the Cisco Connect application or by clicking “Create Account” on the main Cisco VPN Client home page. In order to create a Cisco VPN account, you’ll need to provide a username, a password, and a security question.
After you’ve created an account, you’ll receive a notification email from Cisco that will give you a dedicated portal login. This is the account that you’ll need to use whenever you want to connect to a Cisco VPN service.
Configure The VPN On Your Router
The next step is to configure your router (usually your Internet service provider’s router) to allow VPN connections. In most cases, this will be done automatically when you install the Cisco VPN Client, but you can double check by opening up a command-line interface (CLI) and entering the following command:
IP ~ [IP address of your router]: Mask ~ [IP address mask of your router] > setroute [IP address of your ISP]: [IP address of your VPN]
The above command will make sure that all Internet traffic, including HTTP, HTTPS, and FTP transfers, is routed through your VPN and not your Internet service provider. (We’ll discuss more about VPNs in a bit.)
Use The VPN Client To Connect To A Cisco VPN
Once your router is configured to allow VPN connections and you’ve logged into your account, you can use the VPN Client to connect to a Cisco VPN service.
In order to connect to a Cisco VPN, you’ll need to enter the following information in the VPN Client:
- Cisco Connect application — the name of the application that will be used to connect to the protected network (in this example, the VPN)
- Login — your username from your Cisco account
- Password — your password from your Cisco account
- Network — the name of the network to which you want to connect
- Gateway — the IP address of the router that will be used as a gateway to the network (in this example, the VPN)
- Automatic tunneling — this option will make the VPN Client connect to a Cisco VPN automatically whenever you open the application (recommended)
If you’ve set up your VPN correctly, you’ll see a green traffic light next to your IP address in the VPN Client. If you’re uncertain whether or not your VPN is working, you can double check your IP address by entering it into a web browser. If the address is not blocked by a firewall, you’ve successfully connected to a Cisco VPN.
Further Configuration Is Required
Once you’ve connected to a Cisco VPN service, you’ll need to further configure your device in order to access restricted websites or content. In most cases, this will be done automatically when you’re connecting to a secure site, but you can double check by opening up a command-line interface (CLI) and entering the following command:
site [site name] < /dev/null>
If you’ve configured your firewall software properly, you’ll see a “S” by the site name in the CLI. This means that the site is encrypted and requires a VPN in order to be accessed.
Use Another Application To Access Restricted Websites
If you’d like to access a restricted site that isn’t available through a VPN, you can use an application-specific VPN to accomplish this task. There are several applications available that allow you to do this, such as NordVPN or PrivateInternetAccess. These applications will use a different set of default VPN settings than the Cisco VPN Client, so you’ll need to adjust the above CLI command to match. Make sure that you’ve set up your application VPN beforehand and that you’ve configured your firewall software to permit this application to communicate with your router.
If you’ve connected to a VPN and would like to access a restricted site, you’ll need to determine if the site you want to visit is available through a VPN or not. You can contact the site owner and ask them if they have any restrictions regarding the use of VPNs. If you don’t want to visit a site that requires a VPN, you have the option of not connecting to a VPN or of configuring your system to work around the restriction.
Use A Free VPN To Access Restricted Websites
If you’d like to access a restricted website that isn’t available through a VPN, you have the option of using a free VPN to do so. All you need is a reliable, free VPN and a reliable Internet connection. Make sure that you’ve tested the VPN beforehand to make sure that it’s working and that you’re not breaking the bank.
There are dozens of free VPNs out there that you can use to access blocked websites, content, or services. Some of the most popular VPNs are ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and PPVPN. All of these VPNs are reputable companies that specialize in providing secure and private connections to their users. Even more VPNs are being added regularly, so if you don’t see a service you like, contact the company and ask them if they have any suggestions.
Use A Proxy To Access Restricted Websites
If you’d like to access a restricted website that isn’t available through a VPN, you can use a proxy server to accomplish this task. This is a place on your home network that will be used to “tunnel” your Internet traffic so that it can be decrypted and viewed by other users on the network. There are several types of proxies available, some of which are more suitable for certain tasks than others. Make sure that you’re aware of the type of proxy that you’re using before you start to configure it.
You can access a list of known proxies here. Most web browsers have a built-in “proxy settings” option that you can use to configure your system to use a certain proxy server for all Internet traffic. The advantage of using a proxy is that it’s already thoroughly configured when you get it, so all you need to do is install the software and then connect to the Internet via WiFi (or another network if you’re on a mobile device)
Choosing a VPN over a proxy will give you better security and privacy because a VPN will continuously reroute and encrypt all your Internet traffic, preventing anyone, including your Internet service provider, from seeing what you’re doing online. Furthermore, with a VPN, you have the option of connecting to a server in a different country than you are in, which will give you additional protection from being hacked or having your traffic monitored.
Use Another Method To Access Restricted Websites
You can also use another method to access restricted websites that aren’t available through a VPN. These include: