The HQ Virtual Private Network (VPN) provides access to private network resources such as file servers and internal Web sites and applications when working remotely. It is not necessary to use VPN to connect to HQ publicly available services.
To use VPN, you will need the following:
- Government-issued/Government-approved laptop
- High-speed Internet connection
- NASA PIV smartcard and PIN
- SecurID token and 8-digit alpha-numeric PIN
(This applies only to Macintosh users who have not been upgraded
On April 11, 2016, ITCD will begin deploying an upgrade to the VPN client on laptop computers at HQ. Cisco AnyConnect will be deployed in a phased approach, and will replace the current Cisco VPN Client (for Windows) and current version of Cisco AnyConnect (for Macintosh).
This updated software is a key part of the Four Cert PIV Smartcard Transition initiative, and will allow Macintosh users to access VPN with their smartcard (NASA badge). This means SecurID tokens will no longer be needed to access VPN. Mac users will be instructed to turn in tokens or submit a new waiver.
Card Reader: ITCD has a limited supply of card readers for Macintosh users who did not receive one with their computer. Contact Jeff Anderson, 358-1348. Lost/misplaced smartcard readers should be reported by submitting a ticket. Users may also contact their IT POC to purchase a new reader.
Known Issues with Accessing the HQ Network Using VPN
- When connecting your NASA-issued laptop to DSL modems, you may encounter problems obtaining a high-speed Internet connection and will be unable to use VPN.
- NASA’s VPN service requires Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) to assign IP addresses or a known static IP address. Some modems that have been issued over the past few years have varied in type and quality, and a significant proportion of them are not DHCP enabled. While workarounds are often possible, each of the different types of modems requires a different solution. To obtain the correct instructions for your modem, contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP). If the modem is too difficult to work with, you may want to invest in an aircard or MiFi device, available for purchase via ACES Product Catalog (APC), or ESD | Order Services. Aircards are small devices that plug into a computer. They utilize cell phone technology rather than wireless access points and provide a fast, more reliable signal in most urban areas. An aircard would make your laptop Internet-ready in any location where cell phones function.
- Windows users using AT&T Air Connect can't access VPN. The workaround is to get a Verizon Air Card.
- To avoid problems with Outlook, be sure to establish your VPN connection first, and then launch Outlook.