In order to ensure that resident students living on campus can connect to the university?s computer network this semester and to stabilize the network, the university is requiring that all resident students have appropriate anti-virus software and patches installed on their computers so network problems do not occur.To connect to the university?s network, students not using Macs must have Windows 2000 or Windows XP on their computers, according to the Student Resource CD handed out to residents living on campus. Windows XP users must also have the Service Pack 2 software and the Service Pack 2 update software.
Students using Windows 2000 must have Serve Pack 4 installed on their computers and the Service Pack 4 update. The software is available to download on the CD given to all resident students by the University.
If resident students do not have anti-virus software and the appropriate patches on their computer, it creates network problems and excessive traffic.
Excessive traffic slows down the network and it can also prevent students from logging on the network. “This excessive traffic is created by viruses and causes a person?s computer to send out a large amount of unnecessary communications… which greatly slows down a networked environment by using up the available bandwidth,” said Peter Galloway, Director of Housing Services.
To combat excessive traffic and computer viruses, resident students are required to have either Sophos virus protection on their computer, which can be downloaded for free on the CD distributed to campus residents this semester, or updated versions of McAfee Anti-Virus software or Symantec Norton Anti-Virus software.
The Internet and network problems that occurred at the beginning of last semester for resident students were a result of excessive traffic. “Students brought viruses with them to campus, but since they were not in a networked environment before, they didn?t realize it because it wasn?t impacting anyone else,” said Galloway. “However, once connected to the network and without the proper patches and virus protection in place, the viruses created the traffic that clogged the network.”
This semester, machines that are caught creating excessive traffic on the network will be directed to a special web page that will explain the problem, and the page will contain steps that the computer?s user will need to follow in order to get the computer reconnected to the campus network.
So far this semester, there have been no major problems reported to Resnet, which oversees the campus network. “I am not aware that we have had any specific problems this semester, although I suspect there may still be some slowing of the network as we continue to work to get machines cleaned up,” said Galloway.
“So far this semester, the only complaint I?ve gotten is that someone?s Ethernet plug wasn?t working in their room,” said Alana Caserta, a student and Desk Assistant working in Schmidt Hall.
Not all students are satisfied with the network or the new computer regulations. “So far this semester, I haven?t noticed much change in the network performance.
I still have to repair my network connection almost every 10 seconds or so. I definitely don?t think the new regulations have helped, either,” said Stephanie Szymanski, a campus resident living in Goshen Hall.
If students have any problems or questions about network regulations, they can contact the Resnet office at 610-436-2344 and leave a message with their name, hall or complex, room or apartment number, telephone number, and their concern.
Students should also make sure their roommates and friends living on campus have the appropriate software installed on their computer and are following the University network regulations.
If students did not receive the CD containing the regulations and software downloads, they should contact their Resident Assistant or any Desk Assistant at their residence hall or complex.