The Office of Information Technology’s recent establishment of a new wireless network, eaglesecure, aims to make on-campus Web surfing faster and easier.
Last year, AU students, faculty and staff were prompted to enter a username and password every time they used the old wireless network, eaglenet.
“You should find that you are no longer asked to log in every time you connect [to eaglesecure], as with the old system,” said Senior Director of OIT Chris Gehring.
Aside from the easier login, eaglesecure differs from eaglenet in four ways, Gehring said.
It is faster, easier to monitor and to troubleshoot, more secure and more widely available on campus, he said. OIT can also view how many users are online at each location on campus.
“The upgrade took a lot of planning and manpower to implement, but we feel that AU’s wireless access is one of the most important resources we provide to our students, faculty and staff,” Gehring said.
The eaglenet wireless network had 230 wireless access points, which were not enough to serve its approximately 4,000 wireless users. Eaglesecure has about 830 access points, providing more coverage and better signal quality throughout campus, Gehring said.
“This meant that there were many wireless clients per access point causing slow speed and, at times, loss of connectivity,” he said.
The primary reason for the switch to eaglesecure was to increase speed and efficiency, Gehring said.
The transition to eaglesecure was led by OIT’s Director of Network Operations, Hassan Marvi. It occurred gradually starting in March 2010, ending with the removal of eaglenet this June.
The wireless network is available in all campus buildings, as well as on the Main Quad, in the Woods-Brown Amphitheater and the Tenley Campus Quad.
Gehring said there have been no major problems with the eaglesecure wireless network so far, and that “those who are using it are very happy with it, as it is faster, more reliable and easier to connect to.”
During the transition, however, some computers were not able to connect to eaglesecure while both the new and the old network were active, he said. This was due to the fact that the two networks had to operate on different bands to prevent radio frequency interference.
But once eaglenet was deactivated in June, all members of the AU community were able to connect to it.
“The faculty and staff reaction has been positive so far,” Gehring said. “With regard to students, we should wait a bit longer since school has not started yet.”
If students are having difficulty logging onto the network they can attend OIT’s connection fair through Sept. 2 in the library. AU alumni can also request to gain access to the network.