Step-By-Step Guide to Create New VPN Connections in Windows XP

Use the Control Panel to set up a VPN connection

Windows XP — a now discontinued and unsupported Microsoft operating system — improved VPN connections compared to its predecessors, but the setup process still required some manual configuration.

These instructions apply only to Windows XP. Because XP is significantly out-of-date, we recommend updating to Windows 10. See How to Set Up a VPN in Windows 10 for instructions relevant to the most current release of Microsoft's desktop operating system.

How to Create a New VPN Connection

Open the Windows Control Panel, then select the Network Connections item in Control Panel. Choose the Create a new connection item from the left-hand side of the window.

A new window now appears on the screen titled New Connection Wizard. Windows XP asks a series of questions to configure the new VPN connection. Click Next to begin the procedure.

Specify Workplace Connection Type

WinXP New Connection Wizard - Connect to Workplace

On the Network Connection Type page of the Windows XP New Connection wizard, choose the Connect to the network at my workplace then click Next.

Choose Virtual Private Network (VPN) Connection

WinXP New Connection Wizard - VPN Network Connection

On the Network Connection page of the wizard, choose the Virtual Private Network connection option then click Next.

In rare cases, the options on this page are disabled (grayed out), preventing you from making the desired selection. If you cannot proceed for this reason, exit the wizard application.

Enter VPN Connection Name

Windows XP New Connection Wizard - Connection Name

Enter a name for the new VPN connection in the Company Name field of the Connection Name page.

The company name need not match the name of an actual business. While no practical limits exist on what may be entered in the field, choose a connection name that will be easy to recognize later.

Click Next.

Choose a Public Network Connection Option

Windows XP - New Connection Wizard - Public Network Option
Windows XP - New Connection Wizard - Public Network Option.

Choose an option on the Public Network page.

Use the default option, Automatically dial this initial connection, if the VPN connection will always be initiated when the computer is not already connected to the internet.

Otherwise, choose the Do not dial the initial connection option. This option requires that a public internet connection be established first before this new VPN connection will be initiated.

Click Next.

Identify the VPN Server by Name or IP Address

Windows XP - New Connection Wizard - VPN Server Selection

On the VPN Server Selection page, enter the name or IP address of the VPN remote access server. VPN network administrators provide you this information.

The Windows XP wizard does not automatically validate this server information.

Click Next.

Select Availability of the New Connection

Windows XP - New Connection Wizard - Connection Availability

Choose an option on the Connection Availability page.

The default option, My Use Only, ensures that Windows will make this new connection available only to the currently logged-on user.

Otherwise, choose the Anyone's use option. This option allows any user of the computer access to this connection.

Click Next.

Completing the New VPN Connection Wizard

Windows XP - New Connection Wizard - Completion

Click Finish to complete the wizard. All settings associated with the VPN connection save.