University continues effort to improve internet
While some students have been complaining of slow internet access in their dormitories, the University is taking steps to improve the internet function through its conversion to wireless, and have recently replaced the connection of the wireless bridge in Turrell Manor and installed new wireless access points in Neumann Hall.
Bernd Walter, executive director of University Computing Services and Telecommunications, said that the University is moving toward providing most of the network access via wireless connections.
According to Walter, this provides enhanced flexibility to the users and reduces cost and power consumption for the University.
Like the recent upgrades in Neumann Hall,in the next few weeks, according to Walter, Cabrini and Serra will also be updated. Xavier, Aquinas and Boland will follow by end of year.
The new access points are designed to reduce interference from devices such as microwaves, Bluetooth devices and other wireless devices that can cause stability issues in wireless, according to Walter.
“Our monitoring in Neumann shows that there is improved wireless stability with University issued laptops,” Walter said.
The wireless bridge to Turrell was replaced in October, and is working well, according to Walter.
He explained that a wireless bridge is way of connecting two buildings that do not have a wired connection between them. If the wireless bridge is down, then there is no access to the campus and the internet.
Walter explained why the internet connection can appear slow at times in dormitories. There are two connections to the internet for the University, one for residence halls and one for academic and administrative buildings. These connections act as a backup for each other.
“The basic reason that some connectivity to the internet is slow at times is that students are over taxing the internet connection with non-academic use such as video streaming entertainment (Netflix, Sports, movies, etc.) and other recreational use,” Walter said. “If the internet connection is saturated, most access to sites outside of the university will be impacted.”
Walter said that to relieve some of the congestion, they are evaluating increasing the amount of internet bandwidth, budgets permitting, as well as segregating different types of internet traffic.
Senior Alex Juskin, a resident in Neumann, said the internet access goes back and forth in terms of how reliable it is. He said that sometimes websites drop, such as Blackboard, or the e-mail is knocked off because of a time session.
“Recently, I haven’t noticed any difference in the internet but I think it has gotten faster,” Juskin said.
However, Juskin said he was unexpectedly knocked off the Seton Hall website for no apparent reason during his registration slot.
He also said YouTube tends to be slow around 11 p.m. and midnight, but “other websites have been running fine.”
He hopes that the connection will get stronger, so he will not have any issues with losing internet connection.
Taylor Hamilton, a junior living on the bridge in Serra Hall, said she noticed the installation process of new connection points.
She said the internet in Sierra was fairly good and better than it was in Boland Hall.
However, she also identified YouTube as a particularly slow website on campus.
“YouTube always runs really slow everywhere on campus,” Hamilton said. “We do presentations in class and people who use videos have to wait for it to load for five to seven minutes.”
She said that she noticed that YouTube seemed to be running better on Tuesday night. She thinks that the new connection points have made an improvement so far in the internet.
Brittany Biesiada can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org