|This is an update. Below is an e-mail I received Residence Life Coordinator about the internet situation. Any comments, suggestions or ideas would be appreciated. |
(There are about 500 students living in the hotel plus some guests from time to
I recently talked to the owners of the hotel and they gave me the following
They have consulted with 3 individual providers to determine the root cause
and implement the necessary changes to their infrastructure for higher
availability of wireless internet access for the students living at the
Crowne Plaza. These 3 consultants came up with the same information:
1) While the total bandwidth currently available at the Crowne Plaza is
adequate to service all internet "web surfing" and email, it is not
sufficient for the peak usage times when all students are using the internet
at the same time.
2) A few of the existing access points that provide Wi-Fe service are
outdated and are not emitting signal strong enough to sustain prolonged
sessions. This is why the connection sometimes drops for some of you and
why sometimes you can't get a new connection. There are 3 to 4 "dead spots"
where wireless internet connection is very poor or sometimes not available.
3) There are too many individual user sessions that are excessively
"hogging" bandwidth. This results from VERY large size files that are
uploaded and downloaded such as movies, gamine applications or internet
television and/or multi-user gaming.
That being said, many students have written me about the hotel not having
high speed internet. The hotel DOES have high speed internet; however it
wasn't meant for the amount of usage and the type of things students are
using the internet for (downloading large files, gaming, etc).
I know that this is a frustrating situation for all of you as many of you
just want the internet to work for your academic needs. I can assure you
that the hotel is working on this. They have either already completed or
will complete the following actions to address the above identified
1) Bandwidth Issue: Before you all got here, the hotel was running on a
bandwidth of 3mbps (megabits per second). This was sufficient for the amount
of users (some hotel guests on the internet at different times) and the type
of usage they had before (web browsing and email). They knew that this would
not be sufficient for students so they doubled it from 3mbps to 6mbps.
Crowne Plaza currently have several T1 lines totaling 6mbps. The hotel
ordered several more T1 lines that will increase the bandwidth to 12mbps
back in August and is waiting for the shipment. This might have happened
already or will happen within days. I should know by tomorrow. They are also
looking into increasing the bandwidth to between 21 and 4 mbps. This project
will take several weeks.
2) Signal Strength: They have been working on replacing problematic
access points with new and improved access points to address the "dead spot"
situation. This should be completed within days.
3) The hotel has also implemented a 256kbps (kilobits per second) limit
per user session. This will ensure that a limited amount of users cannot
control the whole bandwidth, preventing others from getting on it. It is
more than adequate for email and casual research type web surfing, as well
as downloading everyday documents such as MS Excel, MS word, PowerPoint,