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The IT landscape us changing, what with “bring your own device”, remote access and various other technologies allowing a user to work remotely and from varied equipment. In all of this, you are likely to be employed by a company that requires you to configure a VPN connection. Save your IT department some time, and possibly your business unit some money by setting this up yourself!

In this guide, we will cover the configuration, connection and disconnection of a VPN for Windows 8 (click here for our Windows 7 guide).

Initial Setup

  1. Right click on the “Network Connections” icon in the taskbar (the small monitor near the clock).
  2. Select “Open Network and Sharing Center“.

    Windows 8 - Network Connections

    Windows 8 – Network Connections

  3. Select “Set up a new connection or network“.

    Windows 8 - Network and Sharing Center

    Windows 8 – Network and Sharing Center

  4. Select “Connect to a workplace“.
  5. Select “Next“.

    Windows 8 - VPN Wizard Page 1

    Windows 8 – VPN Wizard Page 1

  6. Select “No, create a new connection“. (This step may not show up, if this seems amiss, please go to step 8)
  7. Select “Next“.

    Windows 8 - VPN Wizard Page 2

    Windows 8 – VPN Wizard Page 2

  8. Select “Use my Internet connection (VPN)“.

    Windows 8 - VPN Wizard Page 3

    Windows 8 – VPN Wizard Page 3

  9. Enter the address of your VPN, this would be made available by your IT department, in this case we are using the example address “examplevpn.sigmasquared.co.za“.
  10. Rename your VPN to something easily identifiable in the “Destination name” box.
  11. If you want, select “Remember my credentials“, this will allow you to connect without having to re-enter your password. Be aware though, that this is a security risk if someone gets hold of your computer!
  12. If you want, select “Allow other people to use this connection“, this is useful if you have multiple people sharing a Windows login. Leave this blank if you are unsure, as it can cause a security risk.
  13. Select “Create“.

    Windows 8 - VPN Wizard Page 4

    Windows 8 – VPN Wizard Page 4

  14. Your VPN setup is now complete!

Connecting to your VPN

  1. Left click on the “Network Connections” icon in the taskbar (the small monitor near the clock).
  2. Select your VPN connection (this will be the name used in step 10 above).
  3. Select “Connect

    Windows 8 - VPN Connection

    Windows 8 – VPN Connection

  4. The first time you connect (or if you opted against “Remember my credentials” in step 11 above), you will be prompted for a username and password. This should be supplied to you by your IT department. In most cases, the username would be your company e-mail address.
  5. Select “OK“.

    Windows 8 - VPN Credentials

    Windows 8 – VPN Credentials

  6. Wait for the connection to complete.

    Windows 8 - VPN Connecting

    Windows 8 – VPN Connecting

  7. You have connected to your VPN!

Disconnecting from your VPN

  1. Left click on the “Network Connections” icon in the taskbar (the small monitor near the clock).
  2. Select your VPN connection (this will be the name used in step 8 above).
  3. Select “Disconnect

    Windows 8 - VPN Disconnect

    Windows 8 – VPN Disconnect

  4. You have disconnected from your VPN!

Congratulations, you now have all you need in order to use your VPN connection in Windows 8!