Engineering Network Services - CSU

Engineering Network Services

Virtual Lab

The Engineering Virtual Lab is a way for you to gain access to most of the Engineering software from a remote location. By using this tool you will be able to do homework or projects from your home or dorm room.
To access the Virtual Lab you will need two applications, a client for a VPN connection and a Remote desktop client (or RDP client).

VPN client

In order to connect to the Virtual Lab, you will first need to create a secure VPN connection to CSU.

Here are some links to setup a VPN client for your operating system.

Supported RDP Clients

  • Windows: We recommend using the default Remote Desktop (RDP) client that is built into Windows.
  • Mac OSX: Go to the App Store and search for "Microsoft Remote Desktop". Install this on your system.

    (do NOT use the old version (version 2.1.1) that comes with Microsoft Office, as it does NOT work properly)
  • Linux: Remmina or use a command line utility like freerdp
    (do NOT use rdesktop as it is not able to connect properly)

Connect to the Virtual Lab

• Windows: (instructions)
  1. Download the connection file
  2. Double click the downloaded file.
  3. When you get a warning similar to the image example below, check the "Don't ask me again...." option
  4. Login using your Engineering username and password.
  5. warning

• Mac OS X: (instructions)
  1. Down the connection file
  2. Double click the downloaded file, and ignore any certificate warnings.
  3. Login using your Engineering username and password

• Linux: (instructions)
  1. The server name is
  2. Use your Engineering username and password. The domain is engr_dom
  3. Accept the certificates.


Please read this section carefully! You may be denied access to the Virtual Lab if you fail to abide by these policies.

  1. This resource is for academic teaching purposes only. Do not use this resource for any non-academic, research computing, or commercial purposes. (Please see the many resources we have available for research computing.)
  2. Do not use the Virtual Lab for running processes that consume an excessive amount of CPU or Ram.
  3. You may not use this resource outside of the United States.
  4. Due to the scarcity of session licenses, any Virtual Lab session that is idle for over 24 hours will be automatically logged off so that others can use this resource.
  5. Engineering students have access to the Virtual Lab. By default, faculty and staff do not. Faculty and staff may pay an annual fee to access the Virtual Lab for course-related purposes; please contact ENS for details.
  6. Please do not consider the Virtual Lab a purely distance education tool, or a substitute for the physical computer labs. The Virtual Lab is meant to be used as a convenient supplement to the physical computer labs. It is a student-funded project and thus only students have access.

Many of the restrictions above are based upon licensing restrictions from the software companies, which we must agree to in order to use their software.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • How do I keep the Virtual Lab window from using both my monitors?
    Right click on the RDP file you downloaded to access the Virtual Lab, select edit, and go to the Display tab. Uncheck the "Use all my monitors ..." option. Then go to the General tab and click save.

  • There's another setting I want to change, such as ...?
    Right click on the RDP file you downloaded to access the Virtual Lab, and select edit. You will see all the user configurable options in the various tabs. To make your changes permanent, go to the General tab and click save.

  • What do I need to manually configure the RDP connection
    The server name is
    When logging in, you may need to specify your username in the format of engr_dom\yourname.

Be advised some RDP clients do NOT work well or at all. Some examples would be the old RDP client supplied with the Mac version of Microsoft Office, or the rdesktop application on Linux.

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This document last modified Monday October 05, 2015

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