Wifi upgrades and border routers and Virtualization

Hello Students, Faculty, and Staff of Malone University:

This entry is meant to be a brief discussion of the changes we have been, and will be, making to provide the best possible service that we can to you, our customers.

Campus Wifi Upgrades

In the survey we sent out to students in the fall, there was an overwhelming number of responses about the quality of wifi in Blossom Hall. We made some interim changes to the wireless in that building before you came back from winter break and have scheduled a complete overhaul of the wifi for early summer. It should be 1000% better when you return this fall.

The upgrade that we plan to complete in Blossom is the same “micro cell” design we piloted in Haviland this year. Each suite will receive its own, low power, wifi access point running on the 5GHz spectrum. This means that it will be super fast and the count of devices per access point will remain low so you do not have to share as much wireless bandwidth with your neighbor’s devices. This past year, we also made changes to Randall Campus Center (aka, the Barn), DeVol, and Regula Halls. This summer we plan to make wired and wireless changes to Centennial Center and review wifi coverage issues that have been recently identified in Heritage Hall.

Campus Border Router

Without getting lost in the techno-jargon weeds, we have replaced the campus border router (this is the device that handles ALL incoming and outgoing Internet traffic). The new router promises to service campus for the next seven to ten years and will allow for several opportunities for Malone to enhance campus research, connectivity, and provide for disaster recovery in the event of a major disaster.

Virtualization of our Campus Servers

The Information Technologies department is towards the end of a selection process to virtualize many of our campus servers into a single, but redundant, infrastructure. The project will allow us to be much more flexible in adjusting to campus service demand. It will also lower our power consumption in our [already green] data center, in addition to providing a cost savings by not having to purchase as much hardware as we have in the past.

Questions or comments? We’d love to hear them. Respond on this blog entry, tweet us @maloneIT, email us at helpdesk@malone.edu (from your malone.edu account), or call us at 330.471.8428. We pray you finish the semester strong. Have a blessed summer!


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