Accessing your Work Computer using Citrix Virtual Desktop Agent

Last modified 9/19/2023

Faculty and staff may use Citrix Virtual Desktop Agent to access their work machines remotely. This method allows your personal computer to access your work computer without the use of VPN.


Please consult with your local tech team to ensure your work devices and accounts are properly enabled for remote connections.

Mac Users: If you choose to download the Citrix Virtual Desktop Agent to your computer, you will need to allow the installer to continue. When you receive a prompt stating the download cannot be opened, click OK. You will be directed to your Security and Privacy settings, click Open Anyway. On the second prompt click Open to continue to the installation process.


A VPN connection is necessary to use Citrix from off-campus. If you do not have a VPN installed, contact the Technology Support Center to request it. For more information on VPN, see: VPN at Illinois State University

Connecting to your computer

To access your work computer, perform the following:

  1. Go to
  2. Sign in with your ULID and Password.
    2a. After signing in, first time users may be asked to download the Citrix Receiver. To remote into your computer without the need to install software, click the Light Version link to open via browser.
  3. Click Desktops from the top menu (Figure 1).

    Figure 1:
    Desktops icon image
  4. Click RemoteAccess (Figure 2).

    Figure 2:

  5. After clicking the RemoteAccess desktop icon, you will be logged into the computer and able to access the resources you need. 


If another account is logged into the computer, you will not be able to connect until they have logged out. 

The computer you are remotely accessing must be on and connected to a network.

Disconnecting from the computer

After you have completed remote work and are ready to log off, do the following:

  1. Sign out of the computer.
    • For Windows:
      • Click Start Click the Logo at the top of the left hand column of the Start menu →  Click Sign Out.
    • Important

      Make sure to sign out of the Virtual Desktop by clicking on its Start Menu, as opposed to your own desktop. The Start menus will be next to one another, with the Virtual Desktop being the one on top (Figure 3).

      Figure 3:
      Virtual Desktop Start Menu

    • For Mac:
      • Click the Apple icon Click Logout.
      • If you are using a Mac to remote into a Virtual Windows Desktop computer, click on the Start Menu within the Windows Virtual Computer and choose Sign Out next to your username (Figure 4).
      • Figure 4:
        sign out of a windows virtual desktop using a mac
  2. Disconnect using the Citrix menu.
    • Light Version:
      • Click the Citrix menu icon in the top center of the browser window →  Click the (ellipsis) three dots (Figure 5) →  Click Disconnect (Figure 6).
        Figure 5:

        Figure 6:
    • Desktop (Receiver):
      • Click the down-facing arrow icon in the top center of the window (Figure 7) →  Click Disconnect (Figure 8).
        Figure 7:

        Figure 8:



You should only sign out of the virtual desktop computer and leave it on (as opposed to shutting it down). Turning off the computer will result in you being unable to reconnect and will require physical access to the computer to be powered on.

For additional assistance with using Citrix, see the following instructional videos:

How to Get Help