OIT Networking & Monitoring Services

Temporary Visitor Wireless Network Access (TVWNA) Upgraded: Network Name Now Visible

OIT Network Systems
December 2 2005

OIT has upgraded Temporary Visitor Wireless Network Access (TVWNA) to make it easier to use.

Previously, the wireless network name puvisitor was not advertised by the wireless access points; clients typically needed to manually type the network name to connect, rather than select the name from a menu.

This was due to our use of a single set of wireless access points to provide both TVWNA and OIT Wireless Service (two different networks). The wireless access points could only advertise (beacon) a single wireless network name (SSID). Upgrades to these access points now allow them to announce more than one wireless network name.

As a result of the upgrade, the wireless network name puvisitor is now advertised by the wireless access points. Clients can now see that wireless network name without needing to manually type it.

The upgrade also has allowed us to reconfigure the wireless access points. Previously each wireless access point used one wireless hardware address for both wireless networks it supported. While this configuration is technically permitted, some wireless clients may have been unable to understand this configuration; as a result, they may have had difficulty connecting. Now each wireless access point uses a different wireless hardware address for each wireless network it supports. (In technical terms, previously the access point used one BSSID for both SSIDs; now it uses a unique BSSID for each SSID.) Those wireless clients that had trouble with the previous configuration may no longer experience that difficulty. This change may also permit us to provide other enhancements in the future.

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The Office of Information Technology,
Princeton University