Last update: Sat Sep 24 06:47:07 2005 Fri Oct 7 10:55:29 2005 Sat Nov 19 07:11:49 2005 Sat Sep 9 07:54:14 2006 Thu Mar 23 14:09:32 2017
Where is the campus network FAQ page?
Where is the departmental wireless page?
Follow this link: http://www.math.utah.edu/wireless.
Every department on campus is expected to support a wireless Web page at the subdirectory wireless below their main page. Ours provides information specific to our department and the College of Science, and includes a link to the campus-wide wireless page.
How much of our campus has wireless coverage?
See the campus wireless map.
I have wireless support in my computer, but I cannot access the network with it. Why?
Access to campus wireless networks requires a University of Utah Network ID and password, the same one that students use to access grades and personal portals, and faculty and staff use for administrative purposes. In addition, on Microsoft Windows and older Mac OS X systems, it requires installation of a special client program on your computer that is used in the initial connection to provide for authentication, as described here.
For Mac OS X 10.3 and later, there is a built-in client whose setup is described with the help of screen snapshots here.
I'm a visitor to the Department of Mathematics, and don't have a UU-NID (University of Utah Network ID) and password. What do I do?
Guest accounts are available as described here. Check with the Departmental Office in JWB 233, or with systems staff to arrange for a temporary gNID account.
I can see the wireless network, but I can't connect. Why?
There are two parts of a wireless connection: a (usually powerful) wireless access point (WAP), and a (relatively puny) laptop, PDA, etc. The latter can often see one or more network access points, but not have enough power to reach them. This is particularly a problem for outdoor connections.
In an experiment made with a laptop computer in September 2006, about half the outdoor grounds of the College of Science had insufficient signal strength to sustain a connection, even though multiple networks were visible almost everywhere.
I can see the wireless network, but I can't authenticate. Why?
Authentication will fail unless you enter your username in the form UU-NID@utah.edu.
I connected successfully, but lose the connection when I move around. Why?
There are two problems with support for wireless roaming:
I installed the wireless client, but my machine still cannot see the network. Why?
Such problems are normally due to one of three causes:
Is the wireless network secure?
In short, NO!
Because a wireless network is a broadcast medium, all wireless traffic is visible to anyone with suitable equipment within the range of any transmitter, including the access points mounted on building walls and rooftops, and wireless cards inside computers, PDAs, newer cell phones, ... Moreover, sniffing attacks are common, and should always be expected to be present. Thus, it is inherently insecure.
As a matter of campus network policy, during the authentication procedure, we provide two flavors of wireless access: the first is to insecure.math.utah.edu (gradually being replaced by hotspot.math.utah.edu during Fall 2006) and the second (and much preferred) is to secure.math.utah.edu. (gradually being replaced by uconnect.math.utah.edu during Fall 2006). Please use the newer addresses if your computer can see them. The changeover time varies from department to department, and some may offer both sets of services during the transition. The old networks should disappear by 1 January, 2007.
For connections on insecure.math.utah.edu and hotspot.math.utah.edu, all transmissions are in cleartext, and visible to any attacker. Avoid use of this connection for anything but the simplest Web browsing, and then only if you don't mind someone looking over your shoulder. Don't ever type a username and password, or credit card number, or anything else that should be private, on this network.
Connections on secure.math.utah.edu and uconnect.math.utah.edu use an encrypted channel so as to conceal traffic contents from attackers. Unfortunately, the wireless industry's attempts to provide encryption have been seriously flawed, so all of the current protocols, including WEP (Wireless Encryption Protocol, or Wired Equivalent Privacy), WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access), (L)EAP ((Lightweight) Extensible Access Protocol), and TKIP (Temporal Key Integrity Protocol) have been successfully attacked, and software for doing so is readily available. The insecurities are well-documented in a recent book, Wi-Foo: The Secrets of Wireless Hacking.
The insecure.math.utah.edu and hotspot.math.utah.edu networks are completely untrusted, and reside outside the campus IP address space. In particular, this means that some campus services, such as access to licensed databases at campus libraries, are not available on these networks. However, you should still be able to do everything that you can do with a network connection at home, or with a public wireless connection offered by many businesses and local governments.
Until a future wireless protocol uses encryption based on the believed to be extremely secure NIST Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), you should assume that your wireless traffic can be, and will be, monitored and decrypted by attackers.
I still need help. What do I do?
Telephone the campus help desk at 581-4000. The help desk hours are not yet 24x7, but the desk is open from early to late, except on Sundays and holidays.