• Faculty & Staff

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) Client is necessary for Remote Desktop access, when connecting to Windows Active Directory (AD) Share drives and U:'s, or other Penn resources from off-campus or on WiFi.  FortiClient is the software SAS uses, which authenticates using your KITE account and requires Two-Step Authentication using your Pennkey.

Your KITE account uses your Pennkey password.  If you need to reset your Pennkey password, please click here.


Table of Contents


Getting Started

Please fill out the webform here to request a KITE account for VPN access.

If you have any questions please contact your Local Support Provider (LSP) here.

Your LSP may need to check in with you to confirm you have created this request.  Please be sure to fill out each section of the webform to the best of your knowledge.


Two-Step Verification

Two-Step Verification using Duo Mobile push notifications (preferred) or Voice/Text notifications is required for FortiClient VPN access.  If your default setting for Two-Step Verification is Duo Mobile push, you will receive a push notification to your phone that you will need to approve.  If Voice/Text is your default setting, you will receive a phone call asking you to push any key on your phone.

If you use another form of Two-Step Verification or are not set up for this yet, please contact your LSP here.

For general Two-Step Verification questions or information please click here.

To check on your Two-Step Verification setup please click here.


KITE Account setup

The webform to request access to the VPN will need to be completed before you can set up your Kite account.  Please fill out the form here.

This is the same webform as mentioned in the Getting Started section above.  After your LSP has received this request, you should receive a reply with further instructions.

You'll need to reset your Pennkey password to set up your KITE account.  Please follow these instructions:

  1. If you DO know your Pennkey password, please click here to reset it
  2. If you DO NOT know your Pennkey password, please click here to try the online challenge/response password reset option
  3. If you are NOT set up for Challenge/response, please contact your LSP
  4. After resetting your Pennkey password, move on to installing FortiClient below

FortiClient (VPN Client)

If you don't have FortiClient installed, download the installer for your operating system here.

After setting up your KITE account you should receive instructions through SecureShare to your email on how to set up FortiClient.  If you didn't receive these instructions please contact your LSP here.

When you first connect to the SAS VPN, you'll need to make sure to approve the Two-Factor Authentication request sent to your phone using the Duo Mobile app.

After you are connected to FortiClient, make sure to test connecting to the SAS service or using Remote Desktop to access your on campus machine.  If you are testing this on campus, be sure to also test this at home or off-campus as well.


Remote Desktop Access

Remote Desktop access for an on-campus machine requires your off-campus machine to be connected using FortiClient.  First, connect to FortiClient, making sure to approve the Two-Factor Authentication request sent to your Duo Mobile app.  Then, open the Remote Desktop application or shortcut to connect to your on campus machine.

For more information about connecting using Remote Desktop, please click here.


AD Shares/U:, FileMaker, GPC, etc. Access

For instructions on connecting to Windows Active Directory (AD) Shares/U:'s please click here.

The General Purpose Cluster (GPC) does require a VPN, but you don't need to use FortiClient.

Filemaker and other Penn resources can be connected to from home or on WiFi using the VPN.  If you want to be able to log in to these resources from a computer that is off campus, please contact your LSP.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Does the VPN allow me to have my IP Address appear to be coming from a different location, similar to a private VPN service?

A: NO!  This VPN is only used for the following:

  • Access to UPenn or SAS resources when off campus
  • Remote Desktop access to machines on campus

The VPN will not change any other form of Internet or networking traffic.

Q: Does the VPN work on AirPennNet-Guest?

A: NO! A machine must be on AirPennNet, Eduroam, or another WiFi network (home, etc.) for the VPN to work properly.  If on AirPennNet-Guest, FortiClient will say "connecting" and freeze until you force quit the application.

Q: How can I reset my KITE password?

A: Your KITE password is the same as your Pennkey password.  To reset your KITE/Pennkey password please click here.

If you have any questions, please contact your support person here.