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Application Configuration Notes: Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client

Documentation and logs for UVM OS and application distribution methodologies

AnyConnect is Cisco's SSL-based VPN client, which replaces the older IPSec-based "Cisco VPN Client" at UVM.  Basic installation is fairly straightforward, following standard MSI syntax:

msiexec.exe /i anyconnect-win-[version]-pre-deploy-k9.msi /quiet /norestart

Unfortunately, Cisco does not provide any documented way to pre-select the VPN concentrator that your clients will connect to.  Their assumption is that all users will be downloading the client software from the VPN concentrator's web interface, I guess. 

Fortunately, I was able to determine that we can seed the default user profile with an AnyConnect preferences file that will populate the "Connect to" field in the AnyConnect client on first load.  Create a file called "Preferences.xml", and add this content to it:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<AnyConnectPreferences>
<DefaultHost>sslvpn.uvm.edu</DefaultHost>
</AnyConnectPreferences>

Now create a "\Cisco\Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client" directory structure under the Default user profile Local "Application Data" directory, and add the Preferences.xml file to that location.  You also can copy the Preferences.xml file to the current user Local AppData directory, to force the default host for the installing user as well.