How to Troubleshoot if your VPN won't connect

The School of Education leverages a secure Virtual Private Network (VPN) that can be accessed through the Palo Alto software called GlobalProtect. Here are some common errors and how to troubleshoot if you are unable to connect.

When you are unable to connect to GlobalProtect using the School of Education VPN, the first thing to check is the "portal" you have entered.

The "portal" is the address of the VPN.

To check your "portal" 

Open GlobalProtect which can be found in the upper right (MacOS) or lower right (Windows)

this is an image of GlobalProtect's main screen on a Mac

Click the "Hamburger" Menu (three horizonal lines) in the top right and select Settings

GlobalProtect Main Screen with the options visible after clicking the hamburger menu: settings, help, about

On the General Tab, look under Portal and verify the portal you have is (to double check there's no hidden characters like spaces you may want to delete using the - button and re-add using the + button) NOTE: You may also have the UW Madison VPN listed as a portal here ( for more information on when to use each VPN, please click here.

The General Tab open under Settings in GlobalProtect with the vpn portal listed as a portal

If your portal is correct, the next thing to check is your username. The username used to connect to the School of Education VPN is your School of Education username. If you have a Windows Desktop on campus, this is the username you use to login. If you are not sure of your School of Education username or would like to verify it, please call MERIT's Public Service Desk.

You can also ask MERIT's Public Service Desk if your account is locked (too many attempts to connect with the wrong password) if your account is locked, ask the Public Service Desk to unlock your account and reset your password for you.

If none of these steps has resolved your issue, please send a support request to along with your name, department, any screenshots of the exact error you are seeing and if you are a MacOS user, please send your MacOS version as well.

KeywordsVPN, GlobalProtect   Doc ID132360
OwnerElla T.GroupSchool of Education
Created2023-10-27 09:20:47Updated2023-10-27 10:00:25
SitesSchool of Education
Feedback  0   1