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Central IT Services for Facilitating Work Outside the Campus

[The following message is sent to List C on 21 Nov 2019.]

Dear colleagues,

Central IT Services for Facilitating Work Outside the Campus   

In addition to the online teaching and learning resources as summarized in the important bulk email from VP(T&L) on 15 November 2019, I would like to provide the following updates, for your quick information, on the central IT services that are available for facilitating departments to arrange work by colleagues outside the University campus:

  1. New Virtual PC (VPC) Function to Allow Remote Access

VPC is a good alternative to desktop office PCs.  To facilitate departments to provide PCs that are set up with proper security protection for their staff to work outside the campus, the VPC functions have been further enhanced for allowing remote access outside the campus network through HKUVPN.  This new VPC functionality (user guide) would allow colleagues working off-campus to gain access to and work on the same VPC as if they work at their offices within the University premises.  With a VPC in office and by making use of its remote access function, departments and their staff would be able to save the effort and mitigate considerable risk of data security breaches in the requirement of copying data files from an office PC to a USB portable storage device when such files are required for the work to be done outside the campus.

Departments can complete CF85 to request VPC for staff use. The VPC facility does not require charges to departments. Its deployment would save much of the resource, effort and time of a department in the purchasing, network and security configuration, software installation, etc.  A VPC will come in the form of a small VPC box with connections to campus network, display and keyboard, and with the readily usable set-up of Windows 10 and a common set of software with a 100GB personal drive. 

  1. HKU Virtual Private Network (HKUVPN)

HKUVPN is a secure network channel for students and staff members who are outside the campus to gain access to the University’s IT facilities that are not open to the public Internet, e.g. licensed web resources, central and faculty intranets, etc.  Please refer to the webpage - https://www.its.hku.hk/documentation/guide/network/remote/hkuvpn2fa for setting up access to HKUVPN with 2-Factor Authentication (2FA).  Most staff members have registered the use of 2FA.  For those who have not done so, please click here to register.

  1. Skype for Business

Colleagues can make use of Skype for Business, which is covered by a central site license, to conduct audio/video calls among colleagues on either PCs or mobile devices.  Please refer to the following for the setting up, usage and detailed user guide of this facility:

  1. To download and install, please follow the procedures here.
  2. To schedule a call, please follow the procedures here.
  3. The detailed user guide on the use of Skype for Business can be found here.
  1. Information Security Protection Measures for Staff Home PC

Colleagues using home PCs for work should ensure that the PCs are securely protected against computer viruses and malware (steps to take).  They can download a copy of the Sophos Anti-Virus solution for installation on their home PCs that are used for work.

  1. Call Forwarding of IP Phones

Departments using IP phones (3917 xxxx/3910 2xxx/3910 3xxx) can apply for using a self-service portal to set call forwarding of their office phones even colleagues are away from the office.  Application can be submitted via CF78 (click PBX extension lines > Self-service portal).

For any questions on the above or the use of other central IT facilitates, please feel free to contact our Service Desk at ithelp@hku.hk or 3917 0123.

Thank you for your attention.



P.T. Ho

Director of IT Services

Information Technology Services