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Emory improves guest wireless access

Emory’s Library and Information Technology Services (LITS) has announced a significant improvement to the guest wi-fi experience while on campus.

For years, EmoryGuest, the free wi-fi provided to Emory visitors, was a restrictive experience that offered limited bandwidth. Starting May 12, visitors to Emory will enjoy significantly improved performance with fewer restrictions. 

The wi-fi industry is trending toward network access controls (NAC)that enable a more centralized control over network security. Clearpass is the NAC vendor that Emory uses for EmoryUnplugged (the standard student and staff wi-fi) and now for EmoryGuest as well.

Not only are guests able to enjoy more bandwidth, but the network no longer restricts access to ports and protocols. This creates a more open Internet experience, improving EmoryGuest’s usability for gamers and video streamers.

“We want our guests to enjoy their time at Emory, and that includes good wi-fi,” said John Ellis, Emory’s deputy CIO.

In order to experience this greater guest freedom on Emory’s network, visitors will validate with a text message or registered email. Fortunately, once users have authenticated the first time, the network caches their address for 24 hours so they no longer have to reauthenticate each time they leave the network. 

Visitors from other universities also have the option to use Eduroam, which gives them even faster connectivity speeds and uses their home university login credentials.

“The new wireless guest access offers more capability, is easier to use, and, at the same time, is more secure,” Ellis says. “It will be an all-around better service for our guests and easier to manage for Emory IT professionals."

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