Kansas State University


IT News

Tag: network

Technology outage result of network traffic

By Information Technology Services

At 4:34 a.m. Friday, K-State began experiencing intermittent problems connecting to various systems in the data center. Information Technology Services staff along with our vendor partner, Cisco, began investigating immediately. While most K-Staters continued to have email access, other systems such as K-State Online Classic and Canvas, the K-State Web pages and some administrative systems were unavailable.  Continue reading “Technology outage result of network traffic”

Network maintenance moved to 11 p.m.-3 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11

This Wednesday, Jan. 11, from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m., IT Services staff will install new routers and firewalls at the campus network border. During this maintenance window, the campus will likely experience brief outages of Internet connectivity lasting 5-10 minutes each (i.e., computers on campus will be unable to connect to anything off campus and vice versa during those few minutes). Also, K-State’s VPN service will be disrupted as that service is moved to the new firewalls. No other services should be affected.

The purposes of the project are:

  1. Replace aging border routers that will soon reach the end of support
  2. Install firewalls to improve security at the campus border
  3. Upgrade K-State’s connection with KanREN (and therefore the Internet) to 10 Gbps (this will tentatively happen on Jan. 15, pending arrival of appropriate interfaces for the KanREN routers)

If you have any questions or concerns about this maintenance window, call Harvard Townsend (785-532-2985) or email network@ksu.edu and security@ksu.edu.

Check the “Status of ITS resources” page for updated information

Summer break? No way; ITS busy boosting technology

Since May, Information Technology Services has been busy sprucing up the campus network, upgrading technology, and more. Below is a short list of the projects that occurred over the summer.

1. Network upgrades.
ITS completed a total network upgrade to Fairchild Hall, and added wireless in Ahearn, Call, and Willard halls. The average number of users during high usage periods is approximately 6,700. ITS is in the process of a total building rewire for Cardwell Hall plus new electronics. ITS installed a new network access control system, SafeConnect in the residence halls which ensures that computers are up-to-date with operating systems, patches  and antivirius configurations.

2. Wireless network security.
ITS increased the security of the wireless network implementing the industry standard WPA2 Enterprise. K-Staters will find three new SSIDs  — network names — in their list of wireless networks available on campus:

  • KSU Wireless, for all K-Staters
  • KSU Guest, for campus visitors (no access to K-State Enterprise Systems)
  • KSU Housing, for residence hall and Jardine residents only

3. Nine more technology classrooms.
Nine general-use classrooms that are part of the upgrade for 50 rooms to basic technology were completed. The rooms include 112 Bluemont Hall, 208 Fairchild Hall, 216 Kedzie Hall, 2 Natatorium, 162 Seaton Hall, 132 Waters Hall, and 120, 122, and 123 in Willard Hall. The technology includes a projector, a simple control panel, switching equipment, and sound amplification. These systems are based on new digital standards, allowing for HDMI, VGA, Component, and Composite inputs. Additional general-use classrooms will be completed over the next two years.

4. Parking services and textbooks. 
ITS worked with Parking Services to update the Parking System.  ITS modified the information available to students on the textbooks by adding two additional links for textbooks accessible from the Student Services Center in iSIS.

5. Content management system.
In conjunction with Communications and Marketing, ITS rolled out the new content management system to make it easier for units across campus to upgrade webpages. ITS also changed the messages that users receive when there is an error locating information on the K-State Web presence.

Watch K-State Today for upcoming information on technology happenings.

SSL VPN service now available to all K-Staters

As part of an ongoing project to decommission the aging hardware that is currently supporting most VPN services at K-State, all users with an active K-State eID are now enabled to use the new SSL-based VPN (K-State Virtual Private Network) and the Cisco AnyConnect client. The new client:

  • Is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux
  • Is simpler to configure
  • Should work better than the older IPSEC-based client in more restrictive network environments

Continue reading “SSL VPN service now available to all K-Staters”

SMTP to be blocked on residence-hall networks and campus wireless

In recent months, K-State has experienced a rash of compromised campus computers used by hackers to send tens or hundreds of thousands of spam messages to the Internet. Besides the embarrassment of having K-State labeled as a source of spam, some of these instances have resulted in K-State being placed on spam block lists where all e-mail from K-State is blocked. To remedy this problem, K-State intends to start blocking the protocol used to deliver e-mail off-campus on three selected portions of the network that typically have the largest percentage of compromised computers — the campus wireless network, and both the wired and wireless networks in the residence halls. This will only affect computers on these three segments of the campus network. All other network segments, including the guest wireless network (SSID=k-state.guest), will be unaffected.

This will take effect during the break between the fall and spring semesters. All students living in the residence halls will be notified about the change before they leave at the end of the fall semester. Continue reading “SMTP to be blocked on residence-hall networks and campus wireless”

WEP key to be removed from guest wireless network

Next week, the WEP key will be removed from guest access to K-State’s wireless computer network to make it easier for visitors, vendors, and other non-K-Staters to access the Internet while on campus. The change is planned for 8 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 24.   Those who’ve been using K-State’s guest wireless with a WEP key will need to reconfigure their wireless settings in order to continue using the service.  See the Windows and Mac steps below to reset a guest-wireless connection.

For new users who connect after the change, the guest wireless network should appear automatically and allow them to connect without entering a WEP key when on the K-State campus.

The guest-wireless network is more restricted than K-State’s wireless network.  Guest wireless allows access to remote e-mail and basic web browsing but not to campus infrastructure systems.

To reconfigure guest access in Windows:

  1. Go to the Control Panel and  then click Network Connections.
  2. Right-click Wireless Network Connection and then click Properties.
  3. Select the Wireless Networks tab and then select k-state.guest.
  4. Click Properties.
  5. In the Data Encryption box, select Disable.  Click OK.
  6. Click Continue Anyway.
  7. Click OK.

Note : If you use a third-party wireless-configuration tool, follow vendor-recommended procedures for modifying wireless network settings.

To reconfigure guest access in a Mac:

  1. In the menu bar, click the wireless signal icon (it looks like a little antenna).
  2. Click Open Network Preferences… and then click Airport.
  3. Click the Advanced… button and double-click k-state.guest.
  4. In the Security box, select None, then click the Add button.
    If prompted to use information stored in your keychain, click the Allow button.
  5. Click OK. Back in Network Preferences, click Apply.
  6. Exit System Preferences.

For assistance with guest wireless, contact the IT Help Desk, 785-532-7722, helpdesk@k-state.edu.