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Introducing SMU LAWN

SMU Community:

As you know we have been working diligently to increase our wireless capacity, visibility and reliability throughout the University. The Oakland, Sacramento and San Mateo campuses have added over 10 New Access points, redesigned the network segments, and added additional security (WPA 802.1X) and bandwidth.

The SMU LAWN (Local Area Walkup & Wireless Network) is designed for students, faculty, staff, and Institute guests who are mobile computer users. Mobile users may have wireless-enabled laptop computers, PDAs, phones, or similar devices. The LAWN gives mobile users network access to the Internet and campus information technology services similar to that which is available from a lab or campus office.

Although all SMU LAWN users are required to authenticate using their SMU account and password prior to communicating with the campus network or the Internet, there are now two different networks (SSIDs) available based on the type of authentication method used; smu_lawn uses 802.1x to authenticate clients before they are placed on the network and smu_wifi which supports redirection to a website (captive portal web authentication), clients which do not support WPA (WiFi Protected Access) should use this ssid.

Nearly every building on all 4 Samuel Merritt University campuses has wireless coverage, including most classrooms and most labs and common spaces. These areas are marked with WIFI Access Zone placards.

All wireless access points on campus support 802.11a/b/g, and 802.11n, including the library, and most classrooms on all campus.

Visitors to campus are able to use commercial wireless network access (smu_guest), which is available on all SMU campuses.

The SMU Guest Network is a web-based wireless network with limited bandwidth and offers no encryption and has session time outs of 60 minutes. It is set up for guests of SMU or for those with devices not capable of supporting 802.1x.

Wireless stuff ya gotta know!!

The University's wireless system now supports two methods of connecting: Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA), and Layer 3 Web Authentication. Information Technology Services recommends that you use WPA if your computer or device supports it (most do now), and only use Web Authentication if your computer or device does not support WPA, or if you do not want your computer or device to permanently store your University password. Some characteristics of each of these connection methods are:

WPA: (smu_lawn)

  • Most computers and devices can permanently store your University username and password so that you don't have to manually log in to the network each time you turn your device on (especially convenient with phones and tablets).
  • Access to Wireless Printing
  • No need to configure your device with a complicated security key.

Web Authentication (smu_wifi):

  • Works with more computers and operating systems than WPA.
  • Your computer or device does not store your password.
  • Must start your web browser each time you start up (or resume) your computer or device in order to log onto the network via and authenticated web page.
  • No access to wireless print network

Connecting via LAWN (recommended)

You'll need the following settings in order to configure your wireless computer to connect to the University network via WPA:

  • Network name: smu_lawn
  • Username: Your SMU email name
  • Password: Your SMU email password

Some computers or devices may also prompt for one or more of the following:

  • Connection type: Infrastructure
  • Security type: WPA2-Enterprise
  • Encryption type: AES
  • Authentication method: PEAP

Note: Some computers and devices may warn you that they cannot verify the authenticity of the network's security certificate. (Windows 7 displays a particularly ominous message!)

Windows 7 pop up message