Setting up and using GlobalProtect VPN for Windows

VPN provides you with secure access to University services and the Internet when you are off campus. Northwestern is transitioning to a new VPN platform called GlobalProtect. GlobalProtect replaces three existing VPN clients: built-in VPN clients, Cisco AnyConnect, and Pulse Secure SSL VPN. For details on the transition, see If you are a member of the Feinberg School of Medicine, you will continue to use your Windows VPN client.

The portal address for GlobalProtect is

GlobalProtect requires you to authenticate with your NetID and NetID password and Duo multi-factor authentication. If you need to register a phone for multi-factor authentication, see

Northwestern IT is aware of VPN access issues from China. We tried implementing workarounds by changing our VPN public IP. However, within a few days of these workarounds Northwestern VPN was blocked again by the Chinese telecommunications agency. At the present time, we cannot provide a solution to using Northwestern VPN in China because the Chinese telecommunications agency continually searches for and blocks Northwestern VPN servers. We have heard anecdotally from some people that using a third party VPN service has worked for them, but we cannot confirm which, if any services, will work.

If your University-owned computer is managed by your department, you may not need to set up GlobalProtect. If you see the GlobalProtect icon (globalprotect-Win-tray-icon.png) in your system tray, skip the set-up instructions and go directly to connect to GlobalProtect.

Set up GlobalProtect

Note that your computer must be running Windows 7 or later. If you don't have administrative rights to your University-owned computer to install software, contact your departmental tech support personnel.
  1. Go to\Software\Titles\NU_Global_Protect\Current\Windows\GlobalProtect64x.msi to download the GlobalProtect installation package.
  2. From your computer's Downloads folder, double-click the installer, then click Next to follow the installation instructions.
  3. When prompted for a portal address, enter
  4. Once installation is complete,
    • GlobalProtect will appear in the lower left area of your system tray.
    • GlobalProtect will automatically prompt you to connect to VPN.

Connect to GlobalProtect

  1. Click the GlobalProtect icon in the system tray, then click Connect. If nothing seems to happen when you click Connect, see Fixing when clicking Connect in GlobalProtect VPN for Windows does nothing.
    Global Protect Windows connect
  2. When prompted, enter your NetID and NetID password, then confirm your identity with Duo multi-factor authentication. You will then be connected to GlobalProtect. 
  3. To disconnect, click the GlobalProtect icon again, then click Disconnect.
    Global Protect Windows disconnect

See Also:

For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) or via email at