Working from home

Work from home is an option the University supports in providing flexible work arrangements. It is not suitable for all staff depending on individual area work requirements. Your work from home reasons should align with point 5 of the ANU procedure on Home Based Work (see below).

Please discuss and put in place an agreement with your Supervisor and the School to work from home. Agreements with supervisors should include information around appropriate tasks and expectations of workload. As the school is required to inform HR and WEG for all staff working from home, please contact your Departmental administrator ( ) with your wish to work from home, WHS assessments and working arrangements. The School will collate and coordinate with other required areas of the ANU.

The following information provides links to useful information on Working from home and in particular, IT based needs and solutions.

Computer security

Before connecting to any ANU resources please make sure the computer you are using is up to date and is running anti-virus software.

Note, Windows 7 or earlier should no longer be used to connect to any ANU resources. This is especially important if you are connecting using a VPN.

Work health and safety

Workplace health and safety is everyone's responsibility. It is important that your workplace is safe to work in even when away from campus.

Please refer to the following ANU procedures:


You can access your email either by using webmail (Outlook Web App), or configuring an email client. ITS support the use of Outlook.

Virtual private network

You need to use an ANU VPN (Virtual Private Network) to access some ANU and School systems from outside of campus.

Reasons you might need to use a VPN include:

Note: The ANU VPN is not a substitute for a full VPN service that secures all your internet traffic while traveling or using an untrusted network.

There are currently two VPN options available, AnyConnect and GlobalProtect. It is only possible to run one of these at a time.

AnyConnect is our legacy system that will get you access to Physics servers and computational machines, Remote Desktop to your desktop or lab, Central Fileshares.

GlobalProtect is the new system that supports 64bit OSX. GlobalProtect is required to access many of the central ANU systems such as HRMS or Insight. GlobalProtect may not work for some local Physics servers and services.

Request VPN access

If you do not already have access you will need to request access to one or both of our VPNs. Please send an email requesting VPN access to

Our default VPN is still AnyConnect, if you want GlobalProtect access please specify and supply a list of any central ANU systems/services you need to access, and we will pass your request on to ITS.

Remote desktop access

Remotely accessing your desktop or lab machine is a two step process. You need to enable remote access on the machine you need to access, you also need access to a Physics VPN which is setup and working on your home computer. Please test this is enabled and working before you rely on this in a working from home situation.

Please ensure when enabling remote access that all users of the machine have secure passswords.

Journal access

Access to journal sites from off campus is achieved using the reverse proxy.


If you will be using your personal computer at home, ANU has access to several work from home software licenses.

Microsoft Office365 is available both online and as a locally installable option.

Windows 10 Education licenses are avaialble for $24.

Adobe Creative Cloud Student & Teacher licenses are available for personal purchase for $33.90 a month.

Remote file access

There are a few options for accessing your files remotely.


If you or your group has storage on the physics or central fileshares you should be able to mount that remotely using one of the VPN options.


AARnet cloudstor provides 1TB of cloud based storage. A sync client is available to syncronise your files between multiple machines. Files and folders can be shared to other users.


Microsoft OneDrive provides 1TB of cloud storage that is syncable between computers and works well with the web based Office365 applications.

Data backup

When working from home please make sure you consider if your data is stored in a safe way. This may involve storing it on an ANU fileshare, or if working locally make sure you make regular backups to an external drive.

Collaboration tools

The preferred ANU video conferencing tool is Zoom. The ANU Zoom license lets you host meetings that can be joined by others without having to purchase Zoom.

Microsoft Teams is also available through Office365. It includes video calling, text chat and many other collaborative tools that may help with remote group collaboration.

Other questions

Please discuss your working from home arrangements with your supervisor. If you have any other IT related questions please email

The information provided above is for members of the Research School of Physics and Engineering. Other areas please contact your local IT department for support.

Updated:  27 March 2020/ Responsible Officer:  Director, RSPE/ Page Contact:  Physics Webmaster