Some students believe that Northwestern’s switch to eduroam as their primary Wi-Fi network slowed their internet speeds and caused connectivity issues.
Eduroam became NU’s primary Wi-Fi network on February 2. Many students were previously connected to the “Northwestern” Wi-Fi network. According to the university’s information technology website, the SSIDs “Northwestern” and eduroam were functionally duplicate services that offered the same performance and security.
The transition to eduroam began last spring. The NU community was “urged” to switch to this network, and users connected to SSID “Northwestern” received monthly reminders to join.
“Phasing out the ‘Northwestern’ SSID reduces a layer of service management and will improve overall wireless network performance,” the project overview said.
The project’s goals were to continue to provide an uninterrupted wireless connection, make device configuration easier, develop more efficient service management, and improve overall network performance.
However, many students said that this change did not meet their expectations.
Weinberg’s freshman Grace Coolidge recalled trying to log into a class on Zoom last week. She said she had a hard time joining the meeting and was kicked out multiple times once connected. Coolidge said his experiences with eduroam were “frustrating”.
Several students reported disconnecting from Wi-Fi on their phones and using cellular data.
Weinberg rookie Mia Costa said that since the “Northwestern” SSID was removed, she has struggled to log in to meetings, take online classes and do her homework.
“I’ve noticed that my Wi-Fi cuts out a lot more on eduroam, and I get kicked off the network several times a week, which can be quite stressful at times,” Costa said. “I started using my cellular data at night; I noticed the service is much slower during this time as everyone is trying to use the network. »
Moises Attie, freshman at Weinberg said he hasn’t felt much change in internet speed since eduroam became the primary Wi-Fi network. However, he said he still struggles with the wireless connection to NAKED.
“The network is not close to what I would expect from a prestigious school like Northwestern,” Attie said. “Most often the Wi-Fi is down.”
Since switching to eduroam, Weinberg freshman Jessica Herlitz said her computer had issues connecting to Wi-Fi. She said the switch made it difficult for her to take notes during class.
But McCormick sophomore Carlos Vasquez said he was happy to automatically connect to Wi-Fi networks on other college campuses with eduroam.
“Although I’ve had stressful internet outages, I’ve felt positive about having free and open internet access at other universities that use eduroam,” Vasquez said. “It happened to me while visiting my friend at George Washington University, which was very convenient.”
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