Built-in, Free VPN on Macintosh and Using it with Cisco PCF files

You don’t need a separate VPN program such as Cisco or Shrewsoft etc to use VPN, including using PCF files, with Macintosh computers.  Follow the below instructions, but substitute your info.  And if you have a PCF file, open the PCF file in TextEditor, and Shared Secret is GroupPwd in the PCF.  If there’s just  enc_GroupPwd, you’ll need to get an unencrypted GroupPwd–the preferred method is from whoever runs your network, but there are ways to unencrypt too…

See:  How To: Cisco VPN with Snow Leopard & Lion via .pcf File

For more info on just using the Mac VPN, see the following but but substitute your info:


  1. Select the Apple on the toolbar.
  2. Select System Preferences.
  3. Click Network.
  4. Click the + icon in the lower left corner to add a new network interface.
  5. Under Interface, select VPN.
  6. Under VPN Type, select Cisco IPSec.
  7. In the Service Name field add ISPtoPSU.
  8. In the Server Address: field enter vpn.aset.psu.edu.
  9. In the Account Name: field, and your Penn State Access ID in the following format: xyz123@dce.psu.edu.
  10. Click Authentication Settings.
  11. Shared Secret:psuconnect
  12. Group Name: psuconnect
  13. Click the checkbox next to Show VPN status in menu bar.
  14. Click Apply.