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Wireless Network - Frequently Asked Questions

SCC Wireless Network Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a 'Hotspot'?
Hotspots are the areas immediately surrounding the WiFi Access Points (called APs for short), radios which are physically wired to the network. In SCC's case, students, staff, faculty and guests can access the SCC wireless network using their laptops, tablets, and/or mobile phones.

Where are the Hotspots on campus?   
Presently we have APs located in almost everywhere on SCC campus and our satellite locations as well, covering about 99% of the property.

What do I need to use the wireless network on campus?     
You will need a device (Laptop, tablet, phone, etc) that has an SSL capable web browser (eg, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, etc) and a WiFi 802.11 G/N capable antenna. Many newer devices have the newer Wireless  N or 802.11N, which has higher download speeds and can receive WiFi signal on two different bandwidths, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz.
Sometimes, the wireless radio in the device is turned off to save battery power; please be sure to turn it on to be able to connect to our wireless network. In general, all wireless devices should be able to connect. If your device is not, please bring it by the computer center in Balsam 3rd floor; room 314 and we will take a look at it.

Do I need to log in to the wireless to be able to use it?
No, you do not need to log in to use our wireless service.

I have a visitor coming to campus. Can they use the wireless Service?
Yes, they can. Just make sure the wireless radio on their mobile device is turned on.

Do we provide wireless access on our remote locations?
Yes, we do. We cannot, however, install wireless APs in locations that use the networks of other schools or organizations.

What if I have trouble connecting?
Due to the large number of different devices and software intended for use with WiFi networks, incompatibilities and technical conflicts happen sometimes. Bring your device to the computer center and we will help you troubleshoot your problem.

Can wireless computers or devices communicate with each other?
No, these wireless computers and devices cannot communicate with each other over our wireless network.  We have disabled the ability for wireless computers or devices to “see” each other on the network or communicate with each other in any way. This is to protect the computers on the network so that a computer with a virus cannot spread it to other computers. It also makes it more difficult for someone to hack into other wireless computers or “snoop” network traffic.

Why can't I just use my own wireless hub/router/AP?
Due to the nature of the design, WiFi networks are inherently insecure. Improperly configured Access Points (in other words, those using the default "out of the box" configuration), and those plugged into the wrong network jacks could allow someone to merely park in our parking lot and gain access to the entire network. The APs that we use are carefully configured, along with the use of a special firewall, to direct certain traffic to certain direction and block the unauthorized traffic. We have had state auditors on campus scanning for open access points and requiring us to identify each one found and the security measures implemented to restrict access. For these reasons, it is forbidden for anyone to simply plug a Wireless Access Point, Wireless Hub, or Wireless Router into the network without permission from the network staff. If you have a need for such a device, please let us know and we will work with you to do so safely, in a way that will not compromise our data and the security of everyone else using the network.

If you have any other questions, please call the IT Help Desk at (828) 339-4409.
       
     

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