What is BoilerKey? How do I connect my ChromeCast to campus Wi-Fi? Why can’t I log into Netflix during my calculus lecture?
Incoming students may be asking themselves questions like these as they arrive on campus in the coming weeks. To aid students new and old alike, Information Technology at Purdue plans to host for the first time several “pop-up tents” to help walk students through any technological problems they may be having during the first couple weeks of school.
“We’ll have people at (Boiler Gold Rush),” said ITaP Communications Manager Greg Kline.
ITaP, the organization responsible for maintaining Purdue’s operating systems and networks, has implemented several programs over the past few years students should be aware of as they continue their time on campus.
Pop-up tent schedule
The pop-up help stations for ITaP inquiries will be held around campus at varying times between Aug. 12 and 23. Appointments are not required, though students should be sure to have their Purdue ID and related devices on hand when asking for help. The following dates, times and locations are taken from an ITaP press release:
— 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Aug. 16 and Aug. 19-23 outside Class of 1950 Lecture Hall and Lilly Hall
— 1:30 to 6 p.m. Aug. 16 and Aug. 19-23 outside Beering Hall
— 1:30 to 6 p.m. Aug. 16 outside Wilmeth Active Learning Center and Aug. 19-23 at the Bell Tower
— Noon to 3 p.m. Aug. 17 and 18 outside CL50 and LILY and 3 to 6 p.m. outside BRNG and WALC.
Pop-up help tents will also be available around some residence halls from 4 to 8 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday.
BoilerKey still around
One change to ITaP on campus came last year with the addition of a two-factor authentication requirement for student’s Purdue accounts, known as BoilerKey.
Instead of logging onto their accounts with just a username and password, students must use the DuoMobile app or a physical token — available for free from the ITaP office — to log in. Without approving the log-in by using a specific six-digit pin or pressing a button using the app and token respectively, students can’t access their schedules, finances or other account information.
Student devices must be registered with the University to use BoilerKey. Those bringing new smartphones back to school can attend any of the pop-up tents or visit ITaP help desks scattered around campus to ensure their new devices work with BoilerKey and students can access their myPurdue account.
Why you can’t stream HBO in class
Last fall ITaP piloted a program that blocked several non-academic websites in a few large lecture halls around campus. The department decided to restrict certain websites and softwares like Netflix, Steam and Apple Music after finding those programs took up much of the available bandwidth in classrooms during class time.
After the pilot program was deemed a success by ITaP, the Wi-Fi restrictions spread to the rest of academic campus save for some multi-use and studying spaces, like Stewart Center and Wilmeth Active Learning Center.
The same restrictions will be enforced for the upcoming semester, according to Executive Director of Infrastructure Services and End User Experience Mark Sonstein.
“Nothing really changed over the summer,” he said, noting that the same websites are still blocked in the same locations around campus.
Students are not able to access restricted websites between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. Monday through Friday in classrooms, lecture halls or other class spaces. An unfiltered internet connection, PAL Recreational 3.0, is available in some buildings, like University Hall and the Recitation Building, for non-academic use outside of classrooms.
Non-academic buildings like the Purdue Memorial Union, Stewart Center, residence halls, dining halls and other spaces do not have filtered Wi-Fi whatsoever. In these spaces students can access whatever websites they like save for illegal items like pirated content.
ITaP hasn’t heard many complaints from students in regards to the filtering program, if any, through their official feedback avenues.
Users are asked to email email@example.com with any concerns or questions they may have, though few have over the past few months. Sonstein said ITaP had received about four emails over the summer, with two coming from the same professor with a logistical question.
PAL 3.0 for gamers
Purdue provides a separate Wi-Fi network, called PAL Gaming, for students wanting to connect their smart gaming devices to the internet in their dorms and residence buildings.
To connect to the internet, Kline advises students first register their devices online. Students should then be able to connect to the PAL Gaming network on their device and access the internet.