Ethernet Switches: The Other Campus Networking

Here we are! The new semester is almost here, and you’re gearing up for move-in. You have all of your furniture, your decor, those hand-me-down bath towels that mom wouldn’t let you leave the house without, and anything else you might need, right?

Ethernet Jack and CableOn second thought, you remember hearing at AARO that there is one Ethernet port per bed in each residential commons. You also remember that not only do you have a PlayStation to connect, but also your Amazon Fire TV and your desktop computer. Sure, you could connect some of these devices to the PerunaNet wireless network, but you want the absurdly fast performance that only a wired connection can provide. Continue reading Ethernet Switches: The Other Campus Networking

Nintendos and the Network

Game DevicesAs students arrive on campus, they might find some of their favorite gaming devices not being able to get online. Older Nintendo devices, such as the Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, & Nintendo3DS, cannot connect to SMU’s wireless network.

OIT’s Networking Specialist Scott Casebere explains.

Wireless networks support multiple data rates (speeds). Your wireless network adapter automatically selects a data rate which will provide you the best possible throughput given your distance from the nearest access point and based on how much interference it is receiving from other devices nearby.

In a large wireless network, when the very low data rates (ie: 1Mbps and 2Mbps) are used by a client, it degrades the performance of all other wireless clients on that same access point. So, in order to provide a better wireless experience to all users and devices, SMU (and any large wireless network provider) must disable these lower data rates to ensure that clients are only using the higher rates.

Unfortunately, the Nintendo Wii, DS & 3DS cannot connect to the network if these lower rates are disabled. It requires the 2Mbps data rate.

Luckily, SMU’s wired network connections allow for these devices to get online. All rooms in the residential commons provide at least one wired jack per bed. These wired connections will even provide faster access and reliability than the wireless connection. While the Wii does not have a built-in wired network adapter, a USB adapter can be purchased from several vendors for less than $20. As for the Nintendo DS, & Nintendo3DS, this option is unfortunately unavailable.