Internet Speeds Increase
Published: Friday, April 27, 2012
Updated: Thursday, April 26, 2012 23:04
LSC students will soon be able to browse the internet faster.
The increased bandwidth, as well as bigger inboxes, more wireless access, and new printing quotas, are all part of LSC’s Information Technology Services department’s plan to upgrade the campus’s network. IT unveiled its plan at last week’s SGA meeting.
This summer, the campus’s bandwidth will be doubling from 50 megabits to 100 megabits, increasing internet speed. The increase is greatly needed, said Chief Technology Officer Mike Dente.
“You can never have enough bandwidth. We could triple our bandwidth and fill it immediately, so we are trying to strike a balance between cost and need and use,” Dente said.
According to Dente, most of the campus internet use actually comes from recreational—rather than academic and administrative—use, accounting for about 80% of the campus’s daily internet use. This is especially in true in the residence hall in the evenings.
Even with the increased bandwidth, Dente said the speed will remain slower than what a person could expect from a home internet connection because it is being split between so many users on campus.
“We can’t provide what someone would get for their home internet for every student,” Dente said.
Wireless access is also being extended. Wireless is now available in all of the residence halls, and new access points are being installed in Rita Bole to make wireless available in more parts of the building.
“The campus is over 80% covered now, so now we’re just adding capacity,” Dente said.
Email inbox capacity is set to increase from 300 megabytes to 1 gigabyte. IT will also be switching its email exchange server from a 2007 model to a 2010 model, which will give students access to more features for mail, calendars, and task management.
Printing quotas are also changing. IT has been tracking student printing for the past two years and has found that 1,000 pages is a reasonable limit, Dente said, adding that 1,000 pages is the limit set by many other colleges. Once a student exceeds his or her limit, he or she will have to pay five cents for each black-and-white page and fifteen cents for each color page.
“We’re not trying to make money off it; it’s just what it would be for our costs,” Dente said. He added that he hopes the quotas will encourage students to ask their professors whether assignments really need to be printed, and he hopes this will bring down printing and therefore conserve money and paper campus-wide. He is also working with the meteorology department to see if it is possible for senior meteorology students to print fewer copies of their theses.
Dente said that the presentation at SGA was well-received.
“Everything seemed positive. A few people were worried about the quotas,” Dente said.
LSC students seem to be looking forward to the changes. Margaret George, a junior psychology and human services major, saw the presentation and said she got “pretty excited” about it. She added that IT has been very helpful to her in her job as a peer leader.
“I called IT several times last summer to come help me, and they were very timely and courteous,” George said.
Others wish to see some more improvements.
“In some of the labs, on all the computers, it takes like four times to log in,” said Michelle Farnham, a junior human services major; Dente said this issue will be resolved this summer when IT overhauls the lab computers.