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Wireless Internet Access
The Wildcat Wireless service is available, free of charge, to all CSU, Chico students, faculty, and staff.
Accessing Wildcat Wireless
To access the Wildcat Wireless service, you will need a device that is compatible with the 802.11 (b or g) wireless standard. The vast majority of new laptops come with these devices built-in.
Be sure that you are in an area of campus that has wireless coverage.
The network name (SSID) of the Wildcat Wireless service is "csuchico". You should be able to see this network name by opening the wireless network browser on your computer, just as if you were connecting to a wireless network at home or in places such as airports or coffee shops.
No security settings (such as WEP or WPA) are required to connect to the Wildcat Wireless network (see the security tips for instructions on securing your Wildcat Wireless connection).
Acceptable Use Policy
Use of the Wildcat Wireless is governed by the campus acceptable use policy, as expressed in Executive Memorandum 97-18, Policy on Use of Computing and Communications Technology. Users should also read this summary of the campus AUP for information on how it may affect them.
Campus Wireless Coverage
The Campus Wireless Coverage Map (pdf) shows the buildings on campus where wireless signal is available. As with all wireless technology, there are many factors that can affect signal strength, but signal is generally available in and around the colored buildings on the map. In the residence halls, however, coverage is available primarily in the hall common areas.
The campus wireless service operates in an open environment, meaning that information sent over the wireless network (including sensitive data such as usernames, passwords or bank account info) is communicated in clear-text and can be intercepted, unless:
- You are accessing a secure web page (one that begins with "https").
- You have established a connection to the CSU, Chico virtual private network (VPN).
- You are using an application that uses a secure protocol, such as SSH.
To protect your private information, you can download and install the Cisco VPN client (see below) and use it while browsing. You can also protect it by making sure that anytime you are sending or viewing private information in your web browser (such as usernames, passwords, or bank account information), you are accessing a website that begins with "https".
Using the Cisco VPN
For additional security, CSU, Chico uses a virtual private network that encrypts network traffic. Use of the VPN is required to access certain campus resources from the Wildcat Wireless service, but is not required for general browsing. It is, however, a good way to ensure that all of your communications when using the wireless service are properly secured.
To download and install the VPN client, please go to the Cisco VPN Client download site.
(Note that guest accounts—usernames ending in "@cns"—do not have access to the Cisco VPN Client download site. Guests who require the VPN client should contact the IT Support Services HelpDesk.)
Printing from the Wireless Network
Printing to networked printers on campus from the wireless network is available for select printers. Visit the knowledge base for more information about our print management system, GoPrint.
Connection Timeout and Session Length
- 180 minute idle timeout: If your Wildcat Wireless connection stays idle for 3 hours, you will be required to log in the next time you attempt to use the wireless service.
A Note About Wireless in the Residence Halls
As you may notice from the wireless coverage map, wireless access is available in the residence halls. However, due to additional information security concerns in the residence halls, please be aware that users of the wireless service in the residence halls will be required to install the Cisco Clean Access Agent. This software will ensure that computers in the residence halls meet campus software security requirements. More information can be found at the ResNet home page.