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ResNet Router Policy

Given that OIT and Housing are investing so heavily into deploying a high-end wireless network for our student residents, we will be disallowing the use of wireless routers within the residence halls from this point forward. In the past, we have allowed students to bring their own wireless routers onto this network due to our lack of an enterprise wireless solution to offer them, but now that we will have a high-end 802.11n* WiFi network in place, it is time to clean up our act. Privately-owned routers create a number of problems, and first and foremost is radio interference. These routers transmit within the 2.4GHz and 5.0GHz radio bands, which is the exact same spectrum as our new enterprise wireless will use. If we allow these private routers, they will cloud the spectrum and decrease performance for everyone within range. Just one of these routers could degrade performance for dozens of other individuals, which isn't fair to others and also makes these networks more challenging for OIT to support. The second big problem is network security. These private routers are typically deployed with either no password encryption, or using WEP encryption which is very easy to crack. This means that these private routers are offering access to the PSU networks to anyone within range, and people can use this unauthorized network access for evil purposes including downloading copyrighted material, launching remote Denial-of-Service attacks, scanning PSU systems for vulnerabilities, all while appearing to be a legitimate PSU resident. We have numerous documented cases of users being impersonated to download copyrighted material in particular. The PSU enterprise wireless solution has been hardened against all of these kinds of attacks, and by disallowing these private wireless routers we are improving the end-user experience from many perspectives.

We would however like to allow users to continue to use their "wired" routers in order to increase the number of network ports in their room. Since the majority of "wired" routers now include "wireless" functionality, we would like to give users the opportunity to disable their wireless functionality and continue to use their wired ports.

*Wireless networking speeds may vary depending on your location and other factors.

Network Switches / Hubs

OIT does not allow the use of switches or hubs on the PSU network. Connecting these devices to the PSU network introduces significant risks to the operational status of the network. Over the years OIT has experienced numerous "meltdowns" on the network due to the introduction of these devices, and thus they have been prohibited for several years. In addition, OIT has deployed technology that will automatically disable the network port if it detects that a switch or hub has been attached to it and will send an alert to the network operations center to notify them of the event. The network port will be re-enabled at the discretion of the network administrators, and only in the event that the offending device has been permanently removed.