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The University of Southampton

Away from campus

Over the last two years, we’ve had to adjust to new ways of working. We’ve seen course delivery temporarily moved online, and many staff became home-based or are now following a hybrid working pattern.

When working remotely, you may need a little extra IT support. Here you will find all the information you need, to move seamlessly between working online and on campus. If, however, you do experience any issues, there are a number of ways to get help.

Remote Working Guidance 

When working remotely, you will be able to access the same systems, services and files as when you’re working in university locations. Many of these systems and services are available simply by entering the web address into your chosen internet browser and logging in using your university username and password. Some will require secure access to the university network, and you’ll find more information below. 

Remember, data protection is even more important when you’re off-campus. Please read the data protection guidance before working remotely. 

Services available directly through a web browser (eg: Chrome or Firefox)

As you’ll now know, Microsoft 365 is a great place to start when working remotely. You have access to your email, calendar, Microsoft applications, Teams and more.

Teams is the best way to communicate and collaborate with your colleagues. There is more information about using Teams, including how to set up virtual meetings, at  Microsoft 365 Teams.  You may also find this short support video for Teams helpful. It shows you how to use chat, join and set up virtual meetings and post messages.

For more information, visit the Microsoft 365 support centre.

Services you can connect to using your usual web brower

Services that require a secure connection to the network

Connecting to the Virtual Private Network (VPN) 

To use some systems away from campus, you need to connect securely to the university network.  There are different ways to do this and the best option for you will depend on whether you are using a personal or a university-owned device. 

Global Protect

We encourage you to use a university-owned device to access university software and services.

If you have a computer provided and set up by iSolutions, the best experience for you would be to use the Global Protect VPN service. This connects your computer to the network, so you can access all university web and filestore services.

Get more information on how to connect to the university’s VPN using Global Protect.

Southampton Virtual Environment 

The Southampton Virtual Environment (SVE) gives you full access to everything, exactly the same as if you were on site. This includes filestore services, software, library resources and licensing of university software applications such as SPSS.

However, your web browsing speed may be slower due to routing through university servers.

Important: Please disconnect from the VPN when you are not using systems or services that need a connection, as each system has a maximum capacity.  

For more information on the SVE service and which software is available visit

Services that require a VPN connectionHow to set up VPN on your device

Accessing library resources.  

Once you’re connected the university network – either through SVE or Global Protect – just enter the following address in your internet browser to access library resources:

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get help with Blackboard or Panopto?

Information on how to access Blackboard, user guides and frequently asked questions can be found on the Blackboard Support Pages. Information about Panopto is available in the online guide.

How do I set up my remote workstation?

Information and guidance on setting up your remote workstation can be found on the university's Health and Wellbeing site.

How can I request IT equipment?

We provide all new starters in new posts with a laptop free of charge (a desktop option is also available on request). This can be ordered through the Computer Purchase form.

New starters in existing posts are expected to use the equipment of the previous postholder, where no equipment is available or is too old to be useful, replacement equipment will be provided but it may be with a recycled device.

Peripherals such as keyboards, screens and docks etc. can be selected if required when ordering your new computer, or you can order them separately through the Computer Peripheral Purchasing form.

If you require a higher specification laptop or desktop to use as your primary machine we will pay a contribution towards your purchase equivalent to the cost of our standard laptop. 

Prices for all standard computers, higher specification computers, and peripherals can be found on the Price List.

What if my university device stops working?

If your device fails or is no longer fit for purpose, please visit the online service portal to raise a ticket using another device*. Our support experts will let you know if it can be repaired or if it needs replacing. If you do need a replacement, select ‘Request something’ from the online service portal and complete the relevant form. Please remember that any replacements need to be authorised by your line manager and the cost code owner.

If you need help getting your monitor up and running, read our guide, How do I connect a monitor to a computer? 

*If this is your only device and you have no other means of working, please call ServiceLine on +44 (0)23 8059 5656 and we’ll prioritise your request.

What if I don’t have a university device?

We encourage all staff to use a university device instead of their own personal IT equipment. Please check the information above on ‘How can I request IT equipment?’ for details of what is available and how to order it.

How do I renew my Windows licence?

If you get a Windows licence activation message or a warning message on your computer, please follow the guidance in this handy step-by-step guide. 
How do I renew my Windows licence?

How do I use specialist software?

We have a number of specialist software packages and corporate applications available. Any additional software you need to install on your university computer is available through the Additional Software icon on your desktop.

For more information on what’s available and where, please see

How do I access my university-managed Windows PC remotely?

Guidance on how to access your university-managed Windows PC remotely can be found here: How do I access my university-owned Windows PC remotely?

How do I access my shared resource filestore (J:drive) away from campus?

Guidance on accessing filestore can be found here: How do I access my shared resource filestore (J:Drive) away from campus?

Please note we are gradually moving staff and students over from using filestore (J:Drive) to OneDrive, because it is simpler, more accessible and provides much more file storage. Some staff will now be using OneDrive which can be accessed via a web browser.

Which technology and equipment should I use to work from home?

You should use university IT equipment when working from home. We provide standard IT equipment free of charge. Please see the section, ‘How can I request IT equipment?’ for details of what is available and how to place an order.

How do I add a shared mailbox?

Instructions as to how to add a shared mailbox can be found here: How do I add a shared email account to Outlook for Windows?

Instructions on how to open a shared mailbox when working remotely using Office365 Web Access (OWA) can be found here. Opening a shared mailbox from Office365 Web Access.

How do I get further help?

For further guidance and support, please visit the iSolutions Service Portal where you will find a range of knowledge base articles to help you.

If you need specific help or advice with your IT, or for any specialist software or service not listed above, please call or email ServiceLine, who will be able to advise further. Contact details can be found here.

What web browser should I be using?

We recommend you use the latest version of Firefox or Chrome.

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