Connecting via VPN to authenticate to a domain in Windows 7

In XP there used to be an option to connect via dial-up to log in to a computer. This is no longer obviously available in Window 7. The good news is it still exists and works really well. This is how to configure it.

  1. Login as a user with local admin rights 
  2. Create the VPN connection by going to “Network and Sharing Center”, then click “Setup up a connection or network” - “Connect to a workplace”.
  3. Fill out the details to connect to your work VPN and choose the option to allow other people to use this connection. This is what will make the option appear on the log in screen. 
  4. Complete the wizard and save the connection.
You can now use this connection to log in directly to the domain and/or to join the PC to the domain if needed.
  1. After rebooting, press Ctrl-Alt-Delete to log on if prompted. 
  2. Click Switch User to view other logon options. 
  3. Will now see a blue button in the lower left for each connection shared with all users. 
  4. Click the blue button.
  5. Type the username and password for the connection and click the blue arrow to connect. 
  6. After the connection is established, Windows will use the same credentials to try to log into Windows. If that fails, (for example you use a different password for your VPN) the connection remains active and you will be taken back to the Windows log in screen to submit Windows credentials.

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