NBIP Computing: Information

Accessing site resources via VPN

RSA Tokens To access site resources via a Virtual Private Network (VPN) you will need an "RSA token". This can either be an app that runs on your smartphone (a soft token), or a small physical device that you can attach to your keyring (a hard token). The RSA token generates a unique 6-digit key every 60 seconds and is used to provide a second factor (on top of your password) to identify you. Please contact the Computing helpdesk to purchase a soft or hard token. Tokens and the associated licences cost £96 and last for THREE years.

E-Mail

You don't need VPN to access your e-mail. See the e-mail topic for details on how to do this.

Journals

Most journals do not require you to use VPN. You can access them using something called "Shibboleth" often referred to on a publishers' website as "Institutional login". Full details on how to use Shibboleth, and which websites require you to use VPN are available on the library information pages. See "Library information".

VPN instructions

Once you have a token, you will need to install some software on your device. Make sure you are accessing this page from the device which you are going to use to access the NBI. Click on your device type in the list below to download the required software -

ios logoDownload F5 Access Client - iOSiOS installation/usage instructions
android logoDownload F5 Access Client - AndroidAndroid installation/usage instructions
Windows logoDownload BIG-IP Edge Client - Windows (7/ 8.1 / 10)Windows installation/usage instructions
mac logoDownload BIG-IP Edge Client - MacMac installation/usage instructions
linux logoDownload BIG-IP Edge Client - Linux command lineLinux command line installation/usage instructions
linux logoLinux full domain accessCurrently not supported

Accessing your Windows PC

After connecting to VPN, you can launch Remote Desktop and connect to your PC at NBI (your PC at NBI will need to be switched on)
  • On a Windows PC
    • From the Start button search for Remote Desktop (All Programs > Accessories > Remote Desktop Connection) :
    • In the “Computer” field, enter "nXXXXX.nbi.ac.uk" to connect to your PC (where nXXXXX is your PC number).
    • Log on with your domain username (nr4\yourUsername) and password.
  • On a Mac
    • Launch the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection program (available from the Mac App store)
    • Select to create a New connection
    • Enter: nxxxxx.nbi.ac.uk in the ‘PC name’ section (where xxxxx is the ID number of your computer on site)
    • Close the window, select the computer name you just entered and click ‘Start’
    • Log on with your domain username (nr4\yourUsername) and password.
To connect to a Mac use a VNC program. Computing Support can assist to set this up for you if required

Remote Desktop Services

You can access standard windows-based applications on a variety of non-windows devices using "Remote Desktop Services". To use remote desktop services, please follow these instructions


Installing & using the iOS client

First-time configuration

Run the installed app "Edge Client", then
iOS

Tap on "Settings" and then "Add configuration..."
iOS

Set the description to whatever you like, set the server to portal.nbi.ac.uk and select "Web Logon"
iOS

Using the iOS client

From the connection view, tap on [Connect]
iOS

Fill in your domain username, your domain password and the code from your RSA token and click [Logon]
iOS

That's it. You should now be connected.


Installing & using the Android client

After downloading the Installer, run it and go through the standard process for installing an android application.

First-time configuration

Run the installed app "Edge Client", then

Tap on [Configure server]

Name your connection whatever you like, set the server to portal.nbi.ac.uk and tick "Web Logon"

Hit the back button on your android device and then tap on [Connect]

You will be asked to make the edge client an administrator. It needs this to be able to enforce passwords and monitor the screen. Please tap on [Activate]

If you are asked to trust the application, please indicate that you do by checking the box and tapping [OK]

Using the android client

Having started the client, fill in your domain username, your domain password and the code from your RSA token and click [Logon]

That's it. You should now be connected.


Installing & using the Windows client

DOWNLOAD (note, download NOT run) the Installer. After it has downloaded, run it and go through the standard process for installing a windows application. If windows complains that it is from an unknown publisher, ignore this and continue with the installation.

To connect to NBI services -

Run the installed program "Big-IP Edge Client", then

Click on [Connect]

Fill in your domain username, your domain password, the code from your RSA token and click [Logon]

That's it. You should now be connected.

To disconnect-

Click on the icon at the bottom of your screen and click the [Disconnect] button


Installing & using the Mac client

After downloading the installer, run it and go through the standard process for installing a mac application.

To connect to NBI services -

Run the installed program "Big-IP Edge Client", then

Click on [Connect], fill in your domain username, your domain password and the code from your RSA token and click [Logon]

That's it. You should now be connected.

To disconnect-

Click on the icon at the top of your screen and choose "Disconnect" from the menu



Configuring Linux (command line)

After downloading the installer, unpack it and then open a command window at the location you unpacked the files. Install the client by issuing the following commands
$ sudo ./Install.sh 
[sudo] password for username: your_linux_password


F5 Linux CLI (command line interface ) Edge Client Installer

Would you like to install/update svpn components (yes/no)? yes
Would you like to install/update CLI client (yes/no)? yes
/bin/bash: ELF 64-bit LSB executable, x86-64, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked (uses shared libs), for GNU/Linux 2.6.32, BuildID[sha1]=102a46f86d7eb556dbaca208bccbd0377ffa6558, stripped

Installation completed successfully


--> f5fpc is installed in /usr/local/bin
--> Please check f5fpc --help command to get started
--> Uninstaller located in /usr/local/lib/F5Networks/uninstall_F5.sh
	
	

Using the Linux client (command line)

Note: This will only give you limited connectivity as it is not possible to identify your machine from the command line client. You can use remote desktop services to access file shares etc. once connected

To initiate a connection, type the following command and then enter your 6-digit RSA code showing on your RSA token, followed by the domain password.
$ f5fpc -s -t portal.nbi.ac.uk -x -u username
Enter password: RSA_6digit_codeyour_domain_password
Operation in progress	


Please check back the status with f5fpc --info
	
e.g.
$ f5fpc -s -t portal.nbi.ac.uk -x -u johnd
Enter password: 123456mypassword
	
After a few seconds f5fpc --info will show your connection details e.g.
$ f5fpc -i
Connection Status: session established
Favorites Information:
______________________
fav-Id   fav-Type  fav-Status       fav-Name
186      vpn        established     /Common/nbi_policy_na_res


Favorites Extended Info:
________________________
Fav-Id: 186  Fav-Name: /Common/nbi_policy_na_res
Tunnel Port:                    443
Tunnel Protocol:                TCP
Tunnel Security Protocol:       TLSv1/SSLv3
Tunnel Cipher Strength:         128
Tunnel Hash Algorithm:	        SHA1
Tunnel Cipher Algorithm:        RC4(128)
Tunnel PKI Algorithm:           RSA
Tunnel Client IPv4 Address:     1.1.1.24
Tunnel Client IPv6 Address:     
Tunnel Server IPv4 Address:     1.1.1.1
Tunnel Server IPv6 Address:     
Tunnel GZip Compression:        Disabled
Tunnel Bytes In:                4761
Tunnel Bytes In (Low):          164
Tunnel Bytes Out:               1295
Tunnel Bytes Out (Low):         164
	
To disconnect from VPN:
$ f5fpc -o

	

Please note: Once connected ALL your traffic will tunnel through VPN and via the NBI internet connection.