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Q&A Regarding Wireless Access Points in the Dorms

posted Aug 29, 2012, 10:54 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

Since Brenau does not provide wireless aceess in every dorm room (access points are placed in lounge areas of dorms only), we allow students to install wireless access points in their rooms.  However, wireless routers are the most common type of wireless device at stores which conflicts with our policy of banning routers.  The following Q&A addresses common questions students have regarding these policies.

Why do we not allow routers in the dorms?

The reasons that routers are not allowed are twofold. First, a router basically establishes an entirely new network behind our network. So - what happens is that once a student authenticates with Rapidconnect from behind their router - any users who connect to that access point later also appear that same person. This means you might be blamed for network activity committed by another student. Secondly, routers are complex devices and students frequently connect them to the network incorrectly. If it simply affected only themselves - this would be ok. However when a router is connected backwards it can disrupt the rest of the network by acting as a DHCP server and handing out IP addresses to other students. Of course - those IP addresses don't work so people naturally blame Brenau - when the problem is actually with a particular student's device.

Why are access points preferred?

They are simple devices that only connect to the network one way, do exactly what each student is trying to achieve, and don't create swarms of new networks all over the place. Also - there is no configuration needed: just take the access point out of the box, connect it to power and the wall jack, and you are done!

Why are wireless access points so hard to find?

Supply and demand. The average home user does need a router so it makes sense to sell both devices at once in a single device. However, in university environments this is not desirable - as stated above. However - due to the fact home users far outnumber university students (grin), they simply just don't have enough demand for them to have them in the stores.

So - how do I get a wireless access point if Best Buy, Walmart, and Office Depot don't carry them?

The good news is that wireless access points are still easily available online and at large technology stores such as Frys and MicroCenter. However - both of these stores are in the Duluth area so for Gainesville students it is probably best to just order one online. For convenience, I have linked to a few recommended models below:

http://www.amazon.com/TRENDnet-54Mbps-Wireless-Access-TEW-430APB/dp/B000799LPE/ref=sr_1_22?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1345909550&sr=1-22&keywords=wireless+access+point 

http://www.buy.com/prod/trendnet-tew-430apb-54mbps-wireless-g-access-point/10392021.html 

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Intellinet+-+IEEE+802.11n+150+Mbps+Wireless+Access+Point/3999878.p?id=1218446804267&skuId=3999878&st=wireless%20access%20point&cp=1&lp=6

Please let us know at helpdesk@brenau.edu if you have further questions or concerns.

Charter moves several channels to digital only

posted Aug 29, 2012, 10:53 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

We are hearing reports from residential students that some TV channels have disappeared including E!, Oxygen, VH-1, Style, CMT and others. Charter is claiming the channels have moved to their digital-only format and require a special box to receive them. We are still waiting on a response from them about how students can get those channels restored since they don't appear to have an option for students to obtain one of their digital cable boxes..

UPDATE - 8-26-12: Charter has informed us that their "survey" to come up with options for students will take several weeks. While we are not happy with this timeframe, we felt it was important to communicate this so that expectations on a resolution are properly set.

Results from Student IT Survey

posted Aug 29, 2012, 10:48 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

First off - we want to personally thank all of the students who took the time to respond to the student IT survey. Your feedback is critical in helping us understand what we can do to adjust our services and processes to better serve you. We have analyzed this feedback and we have put together a quick summary of the results as well as some answers to common questions/feedback. Click "read more" to see the full article. read more ...

Start a Google+ Hangout

posted Aug 29, 2012, 10:45 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

Google has recently integrated Google+ into Google Apps for Education so you can now make use of the special Google+ features such as hangouts. A hangout is a video/audio chat tool that can support up to 10 users simultaneously. Here is a quick way you can start a hangout:

  • Click on the + icon in the top-left of your Google Apps menu (you will need to join Google+ if you haven't already) click the Start a Hangout button on the top right side of your screen.

What would a Brenau Mobile App look like?

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:58 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu   [ updated Apr 12, 2012, 12:43 PM ]

Here's a chance for you to let your voice be heard and tell us what you would like to see in a Brenau mobile application.

Single Sign-On for Helpdesk

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:53 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu   [ updated Apr 12, 2012, 12:57 PM ]

We have added feature to our Parature helpdesk support portal that allows users to log into their Parature account using their Brenau Google account (Faculty, Staff, and Students). At the login page for Brenau Helpdesk, simply click the link that says "Brenau Google Apps Account" and you will be automatically logged into the system. Click the link below to see a video on the process.

TigerMail Update

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:53 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu   [ updated Jan 19, 2012, 9:40 AM ]

At long last - students can now find faculty and staff members in the TigerMail address book. Please note that all faculty and staff email addresses will show as ending in @brenau.edu while all student email addresses end in @tiger.brenau.edu. That makes it easy for you to tell if the person you are emailing is a student or faculty/staff. 

Residential Wireless Advisory

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:52 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

Please remember that Brenau does not guarantee wireless coverage in the dorms on the Gainesville campus. If you are not able to get wireless in your room, you are welcome to install a "Wireless Access Point" in the room. However, "Wireless Routers" or routers of any type are NOT allowed and any student installing one may have their Internet access in the room revoked. You can buy "Wireless Access Points" at Walmart, Best Buy, OfficeMax, or Office Depot. Please contact the Helpdesk at helpdesk@brenau.edu if you have further questions.

Free Anti-Virus for Windows

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:50 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

Don't use a Windows PC without having any sort of virus protection. There are many malicious programs that are stirring around on the internet that can easily take over your computer and destroy all of your hard work. However, be sure to only run one anti-virus program at a time. Microsoft Security Essentials is a great way to keep your computer protected and for an extremely affordable cost - FREE!

Microsoft Office vs. Google Docs

posted Jan 19, 2012, 7:44 AM by psweeney@brenau.edu

Before you go out and spend $$ on Microsoft Office, check out Google Docs in your TigerMail account. For most word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation needs it works just fine and can save files in Microsoft Office formats.

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