iPhone/iPod Touch & Penn State VPN Wi-Fi

In response to the overwhelming amount of interest in getting Penn State’s VPN/Wi-Fi to work with the new iPhone and iPod Touch Software, I made a separate page for instructions and collaboration.  I wanted to make this available even when I post new stories.

Since the release of the first iPhone, and the subsequent release of the iPod Touch, people have been looking for ways to connect these innovative devices to Penn State.  With the release of OS 2.0 for the iPhone and iPod Touch, support for Cisco VPN has been introduced.  I sent ITS an email asking what the procedure for connecting to Penn State with these two devices was.  They responded that they currently didn’t know, but would know for sure in a few weeks.  Knowing this, I turned to online forums dedicated to the iPod Touch.  A Penn State user posted the following in response to my inquiry:

I’m using it on Penn State’s VPN just fine. Go to Settings > General > Network > VPN > Add VPN Configuration > IPSec tab. Then enter the following details:

Description: <Whatever>
Account: <PSU Username>
Password: <PSU Password>
Use Certificate: Off
Group Name: pennstate
Secret: pennstate

Then save it, and on the first page of settings there is now an On/Off toggle for the VPN. Just flip the switch whenever you need to connect to PSU’s wireless.

Another forum poster to my thread admitted that they were having problems, but I see no reason why these settings should not work.  If you have had success connecting to Penn State Wi-Fi using the iPhone or iPod Touch, leave details in the comments (especially if the settings I have posted are wrong.

I got an email from ITS this afternoon giving some details about what was going on.  The email follows:

Hello Steve,

Staff in ITS who had also been testing the new software before it’s release last Friday experienced the same thing that you did – it worked, then it stopped working. At this point ITS staff are actively working and testing possible solutions and an announcement will be made as soon as a solution is found.

Thank you for contacting the ITS Help Desk.

So I will keep you all posted.  It seems as though a ton of people are intersted in this topic.  Keep leaving your comments of experiences.  If you find a workaround, please post it for everyone to see!


7 responses to “iPhone/iPod Touch & Penn State VPN Wi-Fi

  1. Jarryd Beard

    July 25, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    How about the new wireless 2.0 protocol? I couldn’t get that to work (“psu wireless” near the Willard Building). ITS needs to post iPhone/iPod configuring info for this protocol on its site. It has Windows, Mac, and Linux documentation for the test phases of wireless 2.0.

  2. Steve S

    July 25, 2008 at 3:21 pm


    As far as I know, the Wireless 2.0 protocol that Penn State is testing is only active over by the Services Road (close to the Blue Band Building). PSU Wireless is just the local connection you connect to before you go to connect with the VPN.


  3. Flem

    August 26, 2008 at 2:11 pm

    I assume the only difference with connecting to satellite campus’s wireless would be, replacing the “up” in the server description with “aa” for Altoona or whatever campus you’re at?

  4. Ryan

    September 3, 2009 at 7:07 pm

    Ive been trying to figure this out so I can use pandora for the longest time thank you so much!

  5. Lourdes Bee

    August 25, 2010 at 10:26 am

    I want to connect my PSU webmail account on my iPhone and i cant!


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