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How to connect to the Virtual Private Network

By combining the Virtual Private Network (VPN) and Remote Desktop, Concordia staff, faculty and students can access a device and computer from an off-campus site.

If you never had FortiClient installed on your computer, please follow the steps below. 

Step 1: Make sure you have Multi-factor authentication enabled for your Concordia account

Learn more on multi-factor authentication

Step 2. Download the VPN


Select the option that corresponds to your operating system for instructions on how to download and configure the installation software.

Windows Installation

To install FortiClient on your Windows computer, please follow the FortiClient Windows install guide

Mac Installation

To install FortiClient on your Mac computer, please follow the FortiClient Mac install guide

Linux Installation

Please contact the Service Desk by email or by phone ay extension 7613

Step 3: Connecting to the VPN

Once FortiClient is installed and you have followed the “First Time Connection” setup steps contained in the above install guides, please validate that your computer has registered to the FortiClient Endpoint Management System (EMS). You can do this by selecting the “Zero Trust Telemetry” tab on the left side of the application window. There, you should see “FortiClient – Connected” and “Centrally Managed by EMS” listed below.

If “Centrally Managed by EMS” is listed, your installation of FortiClient has successfully registered to EMS. If you do not see this, please follow the instructions above for Windows, macOS, and Linux.

*Please note that the status of “Connected” is only shown when you are either on the campus network or currently connect to the VPN. If you are at home and not connected to the VPN, the status will show “Not reachable”. This does not negatively impact your ability to connect to the VPN when needed.

Connecting to the VPN

Step one

After clicking on Connect, you will be prompted to enter your Concordia email address and password. For reference, for faculty and staff, this will be and for students, it will be

It is important to ensure you use your email address and not your netname. Using your netname will result in an error message.  

Step two

You will be prompted to approve your sign-in request with MFA.

Step three

The final screen will ask if you wish to stay signed in.

• If you are using a personal computer, you can select “yes”, and you will not be prompted to sign in again on your device for the remainder of the day when accessing your VPN.  

• If you are using a shared computer, borrowed from the library for example, please select “no” to ensure that unauthorized individuals do not gain access to your VPN connection once the device is returned. 


If your VPN has suddenly stopped working, it may be because the VPN has undergone a recent update. Please reboot your computer and try to connect to the VPN again. If the VPN remain inaccessible following a reboot, please contact the Help Desk at or 514-848-2424 ext.7613

  1. From your home computer, open Remote Desktop Connection by navigating to the following location: Start > All Programs > Accessories > Remote Desktop Connection
  2. In the Computer field, enter the full computer name of your office computer (See Step 2).
  3. Select Connect
  4. You will be prompted to enter your credentials. Enter your netname in the following format: CONCORDIA\[yournetname]. In the password field, enter the password for your netname.  
  5. Select OK 

  1. From your home computer, open the App Store.

  2. Download and install Microsoft Remote Desktop.

  3. Open Microsoft Remote Desktop by navigating to Launchpad > Microsoft Remote Desktop.

  4. Click Add PC.

  5. In the PC name field, enter the full computer name of your office computer (from Step 1).

  6. Click Add.

  7. You will be prompted to enter your credentials. Enter your netname in the following format: CONCORDIA\[yournetname] as your username. In the password field, enter the password for your netname.

Please check your system parameters by clicking the windows icon> select “settings”> “system”> “about” and verity the “system type” (32-bit or 64-bit). Select your VPN download based on your system type.

You will only need to connect to the VPN to access certain hosted software applications, computer labs/servers or your work computer when you are off campus. The VPN will not encrypt or protect your internet navigation.

Here are examples of applications that require a VPN connection when you are off campus

  • GCS mail service ( mailboxes)

  • Jabber (Concordia phone system)

  • SAP

  • Compatible with Windows 10 and 11 
  • Compatible with Monterey and newer 
  • For Linux OS, please contact the Service Desk 

  • Click on the Windows icon (bottom left)

  • Click on Settings

  • Click on System

  • Click on About and look at the Device Name

Click the Apple Menu, located in the upper left-hand corner of the screen.

For macOS Ventura and newer:

  • System Settings
  • General
  • About

For macOS, Monterey and older:

  • System Preferences
  • Sharing

  • Open the FortiClient Agent and select the Zero Trust Telemetry tab
  • Select “Disconnect” under Centrally Managed by EMS
    • If this window says “Enter Server address or invitation code:”, there is no action required on your part
  • Next, open “Add or remove programs”
  • Find FortiClient VPN in the list of installed applications
  • Click the ellipses on the right and select “Uninstall”
  • Follow the steps in the uninstaller application until it is completed.

  • Open the Applications folder.
  • Find and run on the "" application.
  • Follow the steps in the uninstaller application until it is completed.
  • Once the application is uninstalled, restart your computer.

FortiClient does not replace your antivirus software. You should have an up to date antivirus.

  1. When off-campus, initiate a VPN connection first.
  2. In the application, navigate to the “Zero Trust Telemetry” tab located on the left.
  3. In the field labeled “Enter Server address or Invitation code:”, input
  4. Click on the “Connect” button to proceed.

  1. Disconnect from the VPN service.
  2. Uninstall the FortiClient application from your system.
  3. Download & Install the compatible version of the VPN Client (FortiClient) by visiting — navigate through My CU Account to Apps & Software.
  4. Follow the provided installation and configuration guidelines to complete the setup.

Need help? We are here to support you

For assistance you may reach the Service Desk via email at

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