Once the host computer (your work computer) is configured for Remote Desktop and you know the name of the host computer you can connect to it from a remote machine. (To find the Full computer name on the host computer, click Start | Control Panel | System. The Full computer name is listed on the information page. For example, abc-123.iowa.uiowa.edu.)  

Note: The host computer must be turned on and connected to the network in order to connect to it using Remote Desktop. If your computer is on the Iowa Active Directory domain, you can use the PowerUp service through DIY to save energy and turn off your computer, then turn on your computer remotely when you need to access it.

ITS requires using the UI Anywhere VPN when connecting to a University of Iowa computer from off campus. For instructions on downloading, installing, and connecting to the VPN client, see the UI Anywhere VPN support center.

Follow these instructions to complete your VPN login using a push notification:

  1. Launch the Cisco AnyConnect client. If necessary, enter or select vpn.uiowa.edu and click on the Connect button
  2. Default will appear in the Group: field — leave this unchanged. Enter your HawkID in the Username: field
  3. Enter your HawkID password in the Password: field
  4. In the Second Password field enter the word push (or whichever method you want to use, see the below chart for more info) for your Two-Step Login with Duo
    Note: the characters you enter will not be shown
  5. Click the OK button
  6. Respond to push using the Duo Mobile app on your preferred mobile device, answer phone, to get through Two-Step Login with Duo
    • Important Note: If choosing to enter a sms passcode instead, your login will show as failed, please enter your login information again, including a passcode, to proceed

Duo Two-Step options for VPN:


Enter “push” (without quotation marks) to receive a push notification if you are using the Duo Mobile Push app.


Enter “phone” to receive a phone call at the number you’ve enrolled for two-step logins. Respond to the call to complete your login.


Enter “sms” to receive a list of passcodes via text. Your initial authentication attempt will be denied. Repeat the process and enter one of the new passcodes you’ve received.

(passcode number)

Enter a valid passcode number received via text, generated by the Duo Mobile app or a token device, or generated from the Two-Step enrollment page.  

Note: To use a different, non-push method or to authenticate using a secondary device, refer to the table above.



  1. Make sure your host (work) computer is powered on. This can be done remotely by visiting the DIY Power Up Tool. This can also be a good way to find the host/work computer name
  2. Connect to the UI Anywhere VPN using the Cisco AnyConnect VPN client program
  3. Once connected to the VPN launch the Remote Desktop Connection app through the windows start menu or search box
  4. Enter your full computer name: The full computer name must have iowa.uiowa.edu on the end. Ex.) dept-12345.iowa.uiowa.edu
  5. You will get a Windows Security login prompt where you will need to enter your HawkID password. Click OK to complete sign-on and begin your remote session
    • Note: This may try and default to a different Microsoft account. If it does then click on More choices > Use a different account to then be able to login with your IOWA\HawkID and HawkID password.
    • Entering HawkID credentials to connect to remote desktop

Note: If you have issues connecting make sure that the host (work) computer has been configured to allow remote desktop and to allow your user to remote in to the machine.

Article number: 
Last updated: 
March 14, 2020