OIT Networking & Monitoring Services

Changing the Host Database (Dormnet)

Use the commands below to subscribe a device to Dormnet, to unsubscribe a device from Dormnet, or to change a Princeton University Host Database entry for a device currently subscribed to Dormnet.

These commands may only be used for Host Database entries associated with Dormnet subscriptions. To add, change, or delete non-Dormnet entries, see Changing the Host Database (non-Dormnet).

If you are unfamiliar with the Host Database, please review the General Information below. It should answer most questions you may have about how your request will be processed.

Once subscribed, a device remains subscribed to Dormnet until the student unsubscribes it, with few exceptions.


  1. Commands (Web Forms)
    1. Subscribe to Dormnet
    2. Change a Dormnet Entry
    3. Unsubscribe from Dormnet
  2. General Information
    1. Processing Time
    2. Notification of Outcome
    3. If You Cannot Use the Host Database Web Forms
    4. Customer Support

Commands (Web Forms)

Use these Host Database Web forms to subscribe a device to Dormnet, to unsubscribe a device from Dormnet, or to change a Princeton University Host Database entry for a device currently subscribed to Dormnet.

Subscribe to Dormnet
Select this to subscribe to Dormnet.
Change a Dormnet Entry
Select this to make a change in the Host Database for an existing Dormnet subscription (other than to unsubscribe it).
Unsubscribe from Dormnet
Select this to terminate an existing Dormnet subscription.

General Information

Presently-enrolled Princeton University undergraduate students and presently-enrolled graduate students are eligible for Dormnet subscriptions. So are "Enrollment Terminated/Degree Candidancy Continuing" students, "Special Students," and "Undergraduate Departmental Computer Users." For a more detailed explanation, see Who is Eligible for Dormnet?. (Persons not eligible to subscribe to Dormnet may obtain network service for their computing devices the usual way: by registering the devices in the Host Database as office devices.)

A Dormnet subscription provides network access for a student's personally-owned device without charge. Each Dormnet subscription supports a single device which has an Ethernet interface an optionally a wireless interface. A student with more than one device should subscribe each separately to Dormnet; a student is permitted to have multiple Dormnet subscriptions.

A device lacking a 10Base-TX (or compatible) Ethernet interface doesn't meet the minimum requirements for a Dormnet subscription, but may still be subscribed to Dormnet; see How to Subscribe a Wireless-Only Device to Dormnet.

The network services provided by a Dormnet subscription are geared to the kinds of network devices normally used by client devices used by undergraduate and graduate students, in particular those devices OIT specifically recommends.

To submit a request involving a Dormnet subscription, you must be the student with whom the Dormnet subscription is (or will be) associated. You will be prompted for your OIT LDAP Directory netid (yournetid below) and password. (Some OIT technicians are also authorized to issue these commands.)

After you are done submitting your request, remember to log out of the Host Database Web Service by quitting from your Web browser.

Processing Time

A request you submit via the Host Database Web forms involving a Dormnet subscription is normally processed within one business day (often in just a few hours).

Until your request is processed, it's not a good idea to try to submit another request affecting the same entry (e.g. a subscribe followed by a change). The second request generally won't work; wait until the first request is processed, then submit the second request.

Notification of Outcome

If your request is processed successfully, a piece of email is sent to all of the Technical Contacts listed in the Host Database entry, indicating the result of processing the request. If the request is for a Dormnet subscription, normally the subscription will be fully activated within one business day of this email.

If there are any errors in processing your request, email is sent back to the person who submitted the request, describing the problem. That email is sent to yournetid@princeton.edu.

If You Cannot Use the Host Database Web Forms

There may be rare circumstances that you need to change an entry in the Host Database, but cannot use the Web to submit the request.

In those circumstances, please send email to hostmaster@princeton.edu ; in your email include both your request and the reason you could not use the Web to submit it.

Requests sent via email instead of via the Host Database Web forms will generally take longer to process, as staff must handle emailed requests manually. Assuming your request contains no errors and does not require any special handling, it will usually be processed within three business days of when the email arrives at hostmaster@princeton.edu . Requests containing errors or requiring other special handling may take longer. Therefore, for the fastest turnaround, it is to your advantage to use the Host Database Web forms whenever possible, and to make sure the information you submit contains no errors.

If you send a request via some means other than email to hostmaster@princeton.edu or the Host Database Web forms above, you should anticipate additional delay, beyond that described above for requests sent via email to hostmaster@princeton.edu . This is because someone will need to re-route your request to email to hostmaster@princeton.edu . In particular, note this includes any time you place a Host Database via Services Now (SN@P). And it also includes any time you misdirect a Host Database request to OIT staff members' personal email addresses.

It is best to use the Host Database Web forms above to submit any Host Database requests supported by the Web site, as most such requests are processed automatically. Requests sent any other way will always require manual handling. If you send requests via email, Services Now (SN@P), or via any mechanism other than via the Host Database Web forms above, and these requests could have been submitted via the Host Database Web forms above, handling of these requests may be delayed (beyond the usual time described above for manual handling) to allow us to give priority to customers whose manually-submitted requests truly required manual handling.

Customer Support

Assistance with Dormnet and other computing topics is available from the OIT Support and Operations Center (phone 609-258-HELP, helpdesk@princeton.edu).

A service of OIT Networking & Monitoring Services
The Office of Information Technology,
Princeton University
Last updated: July 8 2016