A wireless network rarely outpaces the connection speed of a wired one (which is why ITS recommends using NUnet or ResNet whenever possible), but nothing beats the freedom of wandering campus while connected to wifi.
To get the most out of the NUwave wireless network, check out the information and tips below.
Location, Location, Location
If you are in an academic or administrative space, or university-owned residence hall, and need to connect your laptop, tablet or phone, you are covered.
Prior to last summer, if you were outside of those places in the past, you might have made do with “bleed” from the internal signal, but that was hardly ideal. This year ITS has been working to provide access in the most common outside areas around campus. As of August 2015 that project is complete.
TIP: Signal strength will depend on how close you are to the access point, so take a look at this map to see where you should stake your spot.
Wireless Is A Shared Resource
A wireless network signal is a finite resource – the more people who are using it, the slower the speed is for everyone. This is particularly true if you or the people around you are using it for bandwidth-intensive activities, such as streaming, downloading, or virtual computing.
Another guaranteed speed stealer: Anyone with a personal router. These are not allowed in 100% NUwave areas under the university Appropriate Use Policy (AUP).
TIP: If you plan on using lots of bandwidth, plug in and take advantage of the wired NUnet and ResNet networks.
Choose Your Tools Wisely
The speed of your connection to each access point depends on two factors: 1) The standard the access point supports, and 2) the standard your computer or device supports. ITS is upgrading NUwave to an 802.11ac network, a project that is over 70 percent complete. The buildings still on the list for updates are on the 802.11n standard.
If you are on a computer or device that uses 802.11n, your speed will be the same no matter where you connect on campus. If your computer or device uses 802.11ac, you will be able to take advantage of the faster-speed access points where available.
TIP: To always hit top speed, consider upgrading to a new wireless card or device, or using a USB wireless adapter (available at most major electronics retailers).
It’s Not Always About the Network
There are a number of reasons you may be having trouble getting somewhere on the web that have nothing to do with NUwave.
- Try other sites – If other places load fine, it’s likely that the problem lies with the one you are trying to access.
- Double check the basics – We’ve all done it at some point…make sure your wireless is turned on.
- Run a scan – Put your computer or device through an antivirus checkup. You could be infected with something that’s causing the slowdown and other problems.
- Install updates – Operating system updates and driver updates can make a difference, so make sure you have the latest installed.
When NUwave is Down, Let Us Know
While ITS does monitor NUwave, you may notice an outage before we do. Don’t assume that someone else will report it. In fact, when it comes to network outages, the more reports we get, the better, as that will tell us the extent of the problem. Contact the ITS Service Desk at 617.373.4357 (xHELP) or firstname.lastname@example.org, and share where you are and when the problem started.
You can also follow us on Twitter @NortheasternITS for alerts on planned and unplanned outages, and reports on when outages are resolved. Please do not report outages to the Twitter account – for action, you must submit a ticket by contacting the ITS Service Desk.