West Liberty University upgrades internet services across campus

By Sean Kranske, Contributing Writer
 
In the past, West Liberty Students have had to deal with some inconveniences with their internet service. This included slow download speeds and various ‘dead zones’ all across campus.
 
However, over the summer, the IT staff has worked to provide improved internet services across campus, both inside and outside of the classroom.

The internet speed across campus has been vastly improved thanks to a much superior fiber-optic system throughout the buildings all over campus. 
 
Where once there was a large convoluted mess of fiber-optic cables that connected all of campus to the internet service, there is now only a small box that both reduces the use of electricity while simultaneously allows for much faster internet connections.
 
This upgrade allows for a huge boost in the University’s bandwidth. Chief Technology Officer Jim Clark said, “We have significantly improved our data highway by going from one gigabyte between the buildings to ten gigabytes.”
 
Another significant upgrade sees improved access points. Access points are found in every classroom, and allow students and faculty to connect to the WLU-Wifi. While the majority of the classrooms already had such access points, the new hardware allows for more reliable connections due to their load-distributing capabilities. 
 
Clark said, “These access points can support approximately fifty students. When they get overloaded, the access points can share information with each other and beef up their power so everybody can be connected at the same time.”
 
Areas outside that were previously considered dead zones but are now covered by Wi-Fi thanks to all new pieces of equipment called multi-antennas or ‘acorns’ that broadcast Wi-Fi signals to outdoor areas. 
 
These new pieces of equipment have been placed on the sides of various buildings across campus including Main Hall, the Student Union and Arnett Hall.
 
Thanks to these acorns, WLU-Wifi can now be accessed from areas like the quad and football field. An antenna has also been placed on the side of Arnett Hall that broadcasts bandwidth to the Chapel, so Wi-Fi can be accessed there as well. 
 
To access the new internet, you will need a username and password. To access WLU-Wifi, your username will be your West Liberty email address without the “@westliberty.edu” added, and the password is your birthday in DDMMYYY format. If you are not a student, faculty or staff,  you can access the new internet using WLU-Guest.
 
For more information or if you have any questions about the new internet upgrades, contact the IT Department at  (304) 336-8043.
 
Photo credit: Sean Kranske
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