Volume 9, Number 6 November 2, 2001

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Campus to get ‘wireless’ network access locations

This month, Information Technology Services (ITS) will begin putting a number of wireless access points in place around the U of S campus.

Glenn Hollinger, Manager of Communication & Network Services says the move is designed to provide ‘anytime, anywhere’ network computing services to all members of the campus community. Hollinger said the access points will allow University students, faculty and staff to gain access to the Internet and the campus network via their laptops. The first locations are expected to be operational in November.

Wireless locations will include:

  • Murray (Main) Library near the new Learning Commons area.
  • Public space outside Arts 144 and 145.
  • Browsers’ in Upper MUB.
  • Law Library.
  • Engineering Library.
  • Lower Place Riel in food court seating area.
  • Natural Sciences Library.

Hollinger said a more in-depth coverage of the campus is not being done at this time because of the anticipated availability of faster, more secure wireless technologies as early as next spring. Faculty and departments who require their own wireless network service can order this service from ITS.

The wireless architecture that is being implemented uses Cisco’s Aironet products. The Cisco product was chosen because of its robust technology and the ability to provide an improved level of authentication and security when Cisco access points and wireless cards are used together. Without additional security features, standards-based wireless (802.11b) networks do not prevent hackers from eavesdropping and modifying wireless communications. Because of this risk to both the wired and wireless networks on campus, ITS will use only wireless products that provide additional security features above the standard 802.11b architecture. ITS expects to support many vendors’ wireless network access products in the future.

In each campus wireless location there will be at least one access point that will provide shared 11Mbps access to the Internet and the campus network. Anyone who wants to use the wireless network will need a Cisco wireless card (available at the Campus Computer Store for a subsidized $149 plus tax) and an NSID account. The ITS Help Desk (70 Arts) will configure and register the card.

ITS will be holding wireless demonstrations and seminars Nov. 14 and 15 for all interested faculty, staff and students. Registration for the seminars can be done online through the ITS website www.usask.ca/its or by calling the ITS General Office at 966-4866.

For more information or to discuss individual department or faculty wireless needs, contact Glenn Hollinger at 966-4827.

For more information, contact communications.office@usask.ca

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