Campus Network Tips and Troubleshooting

Posted on March 18th, 2021 by

Gustavus Technology Services (GTS) is committed to providing and supporting a robust, reliable, and secure network for the Gustavus community to be able to learn, teach, and work effectively.  The purpose of this message is to inform the campus community about the College’s network options and provide some helpful information to allow you to take full advantage of its features, and to provide some helpful troubleshooting steps you can take if you are experiencing problems with connectivity.

Did you know that there are four different methods of connecting to the network available at Gustavus?  These include the wired network as well as three different wireless network options.  Network registration is required for devices to access any of the Wired and Wireless network options.

Network Registration – To gain access to both the wired and wireless networks, devices must first be registered on the network.  To register your device, connect to the network by either plugging in your ethernet cable for the wired network, or choosing GustavusSecure/Gustavus (GustavusGuest is for visitors only) in your wireless network settings and then open your web browser and visit the website https://register.gac.edu and follow the instructions to register the device.  To register devices without an internet browser such as Smart TVs or e-readers which typically don’t support GustavusSecure, visit https://register.gac.edu from a registered computer or phone and choose the option to “register non-computer device.”  You will be required to enter the MAC address of the device you are registering.  MAC addresses can typically be found in a device’s network settings.  Please note, devices that can connect to both the wired and wireless networks will need to register separately on both networks.

Wired Network – Using an ethernet cable connected to an ethernet port and your device, you can access the Gustavus wired network.  While not as convenient as a wireless network, it offers a reliable connection with fast speeds and is great for devices like desktop computers, gaming systems, and Smart TVs.  Classrooms and many other spaces on campus are outfitted with ethernet ports to give members of the Gustavus community access to the wired network.  GTS also provides ethernet cords of varying lengths as well as ethernet adapters (USB-A  and USB-C) to students at no additional cost.  These items are available at the GTS Helpline on the main floor of Olin Hall.

Wireless Network – The wireless network can be further subdivided into 3 networks; Gustavus, GustavusSecure, and GustavusGuest.  The GustavusGuest network should only be used by visitors on campus.  Those with a Gustavus User Account should always use the Gustavus or GustavusSecure network options; not GustavusGuest.  The Gustavus Wireless Network is available in every building and residence hall on campus and even outside in several areas across campus.

  • GustavusSecure – This network uses a protocol called 802.1X authentication and will only work on devices that support 802.1X authentication.  This network provides an extra level of protection by encrypting all traffic between your device and the wireless access point.  GTS recommends connecting desktop and laptop computers as well as cell phones to the GustavusSecure network. Devices designed for home use such as Google Chromecasts, AppleTVs, smart TVs, and game consoles that do not support this type of authentication should connect to the Gustavus network.
  • Gustavus – This is our legacy wireless network and should be used by devices that do not support the 802.1x authentication protocol such as Google Chromecasts, AppleTVs, smart TVs, and game consoles. 
  • GustavusGuest – This network is available only to guests of the college.  Use of the guest network does still require network registration.  These registrations are short term and do not require a Gustavus User Account.  Gustavus community members with a Gustavus User Account should not register devices on the GustavusGuest network.

Basic Network Troubleshooting – Many network connectivity problems can be resolved with basic troubleshooting.  GTS is available to assist, but here are some steps that we recommend to resolve connectivity issues:

  • Ensure device registration – Ensure your device is registered on the network by visiting https://register.gac.edu.  
  • Update – Ensure your web browser and applications that require a network connection are up to date.  Run any available updates.
  • Turn Off Private/Randomized Mac Address – The Gustavus Networks recognize your device based on its Mac Address.  Newer mobile devices have a feature that allows the device to use different mac addresses. To avoid network interruptions or having to register your device multiple times, turn off the Private Mac Address feature in your device’s network settings.
  • Disconnect and reconnect to the network – To refresh your connection to the network, try disconnecting and reconnecting by either unplugging and re-plugging  your ethernet cable for the wired network, or disconnecting and reconnecting to the wireless network in your device’s wireless network settings (this can be accomplished by turning on airplane mode for 30 seconds and then turning it back off.
  • Reboot your device – Do a full power cycle of your device by closing all apps, powering the device down, waiting 30 seconds, and then powering it back up again.
  • Forget the network – For the wireless network on mobile devices, it can be helpful to “forget” the network in your device’s wireless network settings and then reconnect.  If you have a Gustavus User Account and the GustavusGuest network is listed in your remembered networks, you should forget that network and then try connecting to GustavusSecure.
  • Network Diagnostic Survey – Sometimes it is helpful for GTS to have some additional details about the connectivity in your area to troubleshoot issues such as slow connectivity, or frequent disconnects.  To that end, we have a tool called the Network Diagnostic Survey that you can complete which will gather details such as your internet speed as well as which particular wireless access point you are connected to so that we can zero in on the possible issue.  The Network Diagnostic Survey should be accessed and taken from the device experiencing the issue, in the location where symptoms are most frequent, and while connected to the network where issues are occurring.  The network diagnostic survey can be found here: https://gustavus.edu/networkdiagnostic

The Technology Helpline is available to anyone needing assistance with the Gustavus networks or any other technology related issues.  We have several different contact methods available including remote support options that can be found on our website: https://gustavus.edu/gts.  We are open M-Th 8am-6pm and Friday 8am-4:45pm.

 

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