FAQ

ufl.edu Domains

How do I ask for an ufl.edu third level domain?
Click here and complete the form.
If I have a question, who do I contact?
Please, contact Anne Allen
e-mail: alallen@ufl.edu
Phone: (352)273-4909
Cell: (352)871-2707
How long will it take to approve a Domain?
The process should take approximately four weeks
What do the different statuses mean?
  • Registered - an approved third level ufl.edu domain.
  • Requested - initial status for a domain that is waiting on approval by the president's designee.
  • Denied - deemed inappropriate by the president's designee. The requester may still question that decision.
  • Rejected - deemed inappropriate by the president's designee. The requester can no longer question the decision.
  • Retired - domain no longer needed by department.
  • Approved - president's designee has approved the domain, however, there is further action required by UNS staff.
I requested a domain, what happens now?
  1. The request is sent to the president's designee for review.
  2. The president's designee will either approve, deny, or reject the request.
    1. If approved, the domain will be registered by NS staff.
    2. If denied, the requester still has the opportunity to question why the domain was denied and the president's designee may reconsider the request.
    3. If rejected, no further questioning is allowed.
How do I list domains that I am associated with?
Click here and use your Gatorlink userid and password to login. This application is used to check the status of the domain and allows you to pose questions and view responses.
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Wall-Plate

Why should my department join the Wall-Plate program?

Based on the need for robust network connectivity and end-to-end network security, the Provost has provided central funding for Wall-Plate Network Services. Goals for the centrally funded Wall-Plate project and program are:

  • Upgrade an aging network infrastructure - electronics and (some) wiring
  • Enforce security policy and standards - end-to-end across the network
  • Support the transition to VoIP - by removing network costs from the telephone charge

Standard Wall-Plate services include:

  • Life-cycle replacement of switches currently on a 6-year schedule. Only enterprise class switches deployed within the network
  • Switch maintenance including security updates, IOS updates, and special configurations
  • Upgrades and design changes to the network as needed
  • End-to-end monitoring and management of network performance, with early detection of problems and timely response
  • Seamless troubleshooting of network problems, end-to-end
  • Wireless services in all areas of the wall-plate buildings
  • Availability of VoIP phone services and end-to-end I-Phone support

Local units maintain responsibility for the following network related servics:

  • Support for network cabling infrastrucuture
  • Support for Telecommunication Room facilities
  • Maintenance of host devices including but not limited to cameras, computers, and VoIP phones

How many switch ports will Wall-Plate cover, campus-wide, and what happens when there is substantial growth?
Originally, the Wall Plate program was funded based on a count of 25,000 ports, but is currently (2013) supporting 42,000 ports. Net Services anticipates that price-performance improvements will allow the Wall-Plate Program to function within budget. However, continued growth will eventually require additional funding.
What is the process to move forward with the Wall-Plate project for our building?
John Madey and the technical leader of the team assigned to each building will reach out to decision-makers in the building, starting 3-4 months in advance of expected installation. There will be a discussion of whether the users wish to opt-in, and what additional services the users desire. Then a walk-through with the team leader and building users will evaluate the existing infrastructure. Net Services will draft a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will detail all actions taken to support deployment of a Wall-Plate compliant network. Expenses for both the local department and Net-Services will be detailed in the MOU. If the local department agrees to the MOU, Wall-Plate deployment will continue.
What customization choices are available as part of the Wall-Plate deplyment?
Additional options include conversion of existing analog telephony services to Voice over IP (VoIP). There is a 50% cost-sharing plan for new VoIP handsets in new Wall-Plate conversions. Also, the required power-over-ethernet (PoE) switches will be supplied at no additional cost if the users choose VoIP at the time of Wall-Plate installation. Current VoIP handsets have pass-through ports for one PC each, so there is no net loss of data ports to add VoIP handsets.
There are multiple departments/units in my building. What is the level of granularity at which organization(s) can choose whether to opt-in or not?
Net-Services preferes to add Wall-Plate on a whole-building level. If there is a difference of opinion between occupants, eg. in a multi-department building, then higher administration, ie. the college, will become involved to help determine the decision. Cross-college buildings will be handled on a case-by-case basis where needed. In the past, some spaces were given Wall-Plate service at less than the building level, and a great deal of confusion and interference resulted from the lack of coordination.
What if implementation in my building conflicts with other activities I have scheduled?
Several months prior to your building being scheduled for Wall-Plate implementation, the director(s) of program(s) residing in that building will be contacted to arrange final details. If it is determined that the necessary Wall-Plate work will conflict with other activities in that building, the building will be rescheduled for work at a later date, to be determined by the needs of the department(s) and the Wall-Plate implementation teams.
How much down-time will implementation cause in my building?
Very little. Network down-time will be minimized insofar as possible, and kept to times and days where it will cause the least possible inconvenience. The actual number of outages and the length of each will be a function of the complexity of the work that has to be done in that particular building. Implementation teams will work closely with occupants to minimize the impact of any necessary outages.
Can I get moved up in the schedule?

The Wall-Plate implementation schedule is necessarily very complex, and any changes to it are likely to have impact considerably beyond the department(s) requesting the change. As a result, relatively few changes are anticipated.

That said, the existing schedule has buildings which require significant internal infrastructure upgrades (re-wiring) scheduled later in the process because the occupants of those buildings are likely to require that lead-time to accomplish the necessary prerequisite upgrades.

In cases where the occupants take the initiative to implement the needed upgrades sooner, they may ask to be rescheduled for earlier Wall-Plate implementation. Such requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Can a department upgrade its infrastructure to move ahead on the installation schedule?
Upgrading the infrastructure is a necessary prerequisite for Wall-Plate installation, but it is not sufficient to move a building ahead on the list by itself. Interested users should contact NS when they've upgraded their infrastructure to discuss scheduling.
Over time, wiring ages and degrades; what plans do you have for rewiring buildings 10 - 15 years from now?
This is another example of the need for recurring funding for life- cycle facilities and equipment upgrade and replacement. The Wall-Plate project includes funding for network electronics equipment. At present, future wiring upgrades are not included in the Wall-Plate service and are the responsibility of the local building tenants.
Are off campus buildings included?
No. Off-campus buildings are not included in the Wall-Plate project deployment plan. New construction/renovations within Alachua county may be eligible for Wall-Plate support. Contact Net-Services via request.it.ufl.edu to determine eligibility.
What about buildings that are not on your list?
Some campus building newtworks are fed by nearby buildings. Those subnetworks will be addressed as the primary host network is converted to Wall-Plate support. If in doubt, please contact Net-Services via request.it.ufl.edu to determine eligibility.
Can a department self-perform infrastructure upgrades, or do they need to use outside contractors?
Departments may perform upgrades so long as they meet all of the current UF Telecommunication Standards,including test results and labeling. There is a list of pre-approved wiring contractors who can perform infrastructure upgrades,and they have been trained concerning meeting the current wiring standards.
The designs of many campus buildings have not include space for servers. Over the years many departments have deployed departmental servers in the Telecommunication Rooms. Will local departments be able to leave the existing servers in the Telecommunication Rooms?

Telecommunication Rooms should not be used as fileserver rooms. Most telecommunication rooms on campus were only designed for analog telephony service and were never designed to house network electronics or fileservers. New construction and major renovation should include space in the design for fileservers independent of the telecommunication rooms. For buildings with full size telecommunication rooms (10'x12' or larger), departments may requests exceptions for maintaining existing fileservers in telecommunication rooms. Even though exceptions may be granted for existing equipment, departments should plan over the long term to remove fileservers from Telecommunication Rooms and take advantage of central data center services data center link Requests will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  1. The security, support and maintenance of the Wall-Plate infrastructure and electronics must not be jeopardized by the server presence
  2. Cooling capacity of the room must be adequate for the anticipated heat load (ambient temperature not to exceed 80 F)
  3. Servers shall be rack mounted in a secure enclosure independent of the network infrastructure or electronics
  4. Server rack shall not interfere with access to the network infrastructure and electronics racks
  5. Access to the room shall be limited to authorized personnel
  6. Local server support staff must not attempt to configure, modify or access network infrastructure or electronics
  7. Adequate electrical facilities are available independent of the network electrical services and UPS capacity

Can technical staff continue to have access to the telecommunication rooms under the Wall-Plate program?
Local technical staff may request access to Telecommunication rooms. Technical support staff must not attempt to configure, modify or access Wall-Plate network infrastructure or electronics. All port activations and changes shall be submitted via the UF Service Desk . Local staff must not use Telecommunication Rooms as storage areas and use as such will serve as grounds for removal of access rights.
What if I want more ports (than I have now)?
The Wall-Plate Program is intended to maintain all existing ports to a standard level of service. Existing ports will be maintained. Using network monitoring utilities, if Network Services can verify that at least 90% of current ports have been used recently, new network electronics will be installed at no charge. If this cannot be verified, new network electronics will be installed with a charge to the local department equal to the equipment costs incurred by Network Services.
Will you wire currently-unwired spaces, like our lobby, lounge, or courtyard?
Cabling infrastructure and facilities remains the responsibility of the local department. Network-Services will coordinate cable installation. Local departments should request cable installation through the UF Service Desk .
Many departments have deployed external network devices such as hubs, switches, or routers in offices and work areas to avoid the cost of installing additional cables back to the telecommunications closet. As part of the Wall-Plate program will departments be required to remove these external devices from the network?

The Wall-Plate program provides a reliable, secure, high performance network by deploying Cisco enterprise class network hardware to all users. The hardware is continuously monitored and maintained by NS, and is periodically upgraded and replaced. This equipment has the ability to autonomously detect and respond to many network problems by activating alternate communication pathways or disabling connections to devices that are disrupting network service. This automatic problem detection and response happens in seconds whereas human monitoring and intervention typically takes about thirty minutes to an hour to detect and resolve similar problems.

While the Wall-Plate program provides and maintains the network electronics, the departments are responsible for the cost of any new cabling necessary to replace these devices.

In order to provide a reliable and secure network for all users of the Wall-Plate network and VoIP telephony system departments must not attach external devices such as hubs, switches, routers or wireless access points to the Wall-Plate network. Exceptions may be granted for special needs such as technical staff work areas, one time special events, or temporary use of hardware Firewalls by technical staff. All exceptions must be coordinated with Network Services through the UF Service Desk.

Does the Wall-Plate program support fiber-optic to the desktop?
The Wall-Plate program supports VoIP and 10/100/1000 megabit network service over UTP copper cables. Fiber-optic to the desktop is a special service beyond the scope of the Wall-Plate project.
Is Wireless access included in the Wall-Plate project?
Yes. The Wall-Plate Program is funded to provide wireless connectivity throught Wall-Plate areas. In addition, Network Services pursues additional funding to address wireless connectivity issues caused by the need for higher capacity in areas with dense usage.
What if I already have Wall-Plate service, and want to add VoIP?
Current Wall-Plate (only) customers desiring to add VoIP service should request service through request.it.ufl.edu. VoIP deployment can be time consuming and will be scheduled as soon as possible within the limits of previous commitments made by the Program.
Can I get VoIP Telephone Service without Wall-Plate service?
No. VoIP telephone service will only be installed for Wall-Plate customers.
If a building goes to VoIP, can Centrex (direct copper) lines be retained in the building?
Yes, there can be a mix of VoIP and Centrex lines in a building, especially for alarms and similar needs.
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Wireless Networking

We would like wireless coverage in and/or around our building, what do we do?
NS Wallplate Services provides basic wireless access to buildings based upon a 3 year plan that began on July 1, 2007 to upgrade the campus network. See the Wall-Plate Services and Implementation Project page to check if you are eligible for wireless through this program. The Implentation Schedule lists when your area will receive Wallplate Services and basic wireless. If you are not covered under this project or need high density wireless, please submit a request to Network Services for a consult on your wireless needs.
What should we do if we are already using wireless systems?
If you already have wireless devices running please contact us as soon as possible. The potential for harmful RF interference by neighboring devices is very high. We would like to coordinate frequency usage and configuration specifics to avoid disruption of both networks. We can also discuss what would need to be done to configure your local system to work with the campus wide system. You should submit a request to Network Services for a consult on your wireless needs.
What type of Access Points are you using and recommending?
With the Wallplate Services Project you will have a Cisco Aironet Access Point installed, the model will be based upon your needs. If you are purchasing your own it is advisable to submit a request for a consult to Network Services for the current model of access point compatible with campus wireless.
What should we do if we want wireless voip service?
Wireless VoIP Service is not included with Wallplate Services. You would submit a Telecommunications Services Request for wireless voip service.
What do I need to access the wireless network?
You will need to have a computing device (e.g., laptop, PDA, phone) with built in wireless or capable of utilizing a wireless adapter card that is Wi-Fi Compliant with 802.11n or 802.11a/b/g. The product should have the 'WiFi' logo. If your wireless card is 802.11b only it is still supported on campus. You will also need a valid Gatorlink account to be able to log in to the network via the campus VPN service or through the WIPA authentication system.
How do I need to configure my computer?
Instructions on how to configure various Windows versions to use the wireless network are listed at the Help Desk Wireless Connectivity Help page.
Everything is installed and configured, how do I get on the network?
Once your wireless card is active and you are associated to a wireless access point you need to log in to the network. This can be accomplished by one of two methods. The first is to use the campus VPN service. Use of the VPN will provide a secure connection across the wireless network and is the recommended method for connecting to the wireless system. If however the VPN client is not installed or not available you can log in to the network via a standard web browser. Simply open a web browser and you will be redirected to the login page. If for some reason the login page does not appear perform a full reload (usually [Shift]+reload) of your browser. The process is described at the WIPA page. Note that if you have the VPN client you do not need to log in via the web page.
Where can I access the wireless network?
You can access the wireless service in any of the indoor and/or outdoor areas where the service has been deployed. Go to the Campus Map for current wireless coverage areas. You should click on the technology link located in the upper left corner, in the blue square and then select wireless. The buildngs that currently have wireless coverage will be displayed in a darker color, the reddish outlined area signifies outdoor coverage.
How fast is the connection?
The connection depends on your wireless card, it is greatly affected by the environment, harmful interference, number of users currently on the access point and the access point itself. We currently have a mix 802.11n and 802.11a/b/g which will provide different levels of service.
What is the network best used for?
It is ideally suited for applications that require mobility and for locations that are difficult or impossible to wire conventionally. It facilitates and offers new opportunities for research and education. It is also useful for more mundane purposes like checking e-mail or web browsing. Low bandwidth applications in general are the best fit. The limitations of the wireless system can cause unreliable service for applications that require high bandwidth usage.
What should I not use the wireless network for?
As discussed above, applications that require a lot of bandwidth should not be expected to run reliably over the wireless network. This would apply to things like streaming audio/video, running server based applications, large file transfers, and interactive graphic environments (games).
What problems do wireless networks have?
Wireless systems are limited in bandwidth and they are a 'shared' medium. This means that multiple users have to share the network so the total potential speed of the network gets split among them. It also carries security concerns (see next section). To make matters worse there are problems that occur as traffic increases on shared networks that can render them useless. Additionally, there are problems that can arise from environmental conditions and radio frequency interference.
Are there security issues with using this system?

Yes, there are definite security issues associated using a wireless connection that all users should be aware of. The fact that a wireless network is a shared environment means that anyone within RF reception distance of you can see every packet you send. The expertise level required to accomplish this is quite low as well. For this reason you should never use any unsecured connections to connect to wireless accounts. The following uses would compromise your account userid and password if run over an unsecured channel that was under observation:

  • Checking your e-mail through either a POP or IMAP based client. (Although you can send mail as this doesn't usually require that an account password be used)
  • Logging in to an Internet site over a non-secure web page
  • FTPing a file to or from a remote account
  • Opening a telnet session to a remote host

For these reasons we strongly recommend the use of the campus Virtual Private Network (VPN) system. The client software is relatively easy to install and is available for free for most operating systems. Use of the VPN client will help to insure the security of your network activity. For more information and to obtain the VPN client software please go to the VPN service page.

If for some reason you are unable to use the VPN connection there are application level services you can use to help secure your wireless communications. For e-mail use a web based e-mail system that offers an SSL connection. This service is available for Gatorlink email accounts at https://webmail.ufl.edu/. For remote host connections like telnet and FTP, utilize SSH services to provide a secure connection. It is a good idea to use SSH connections even with the use of a VPN connection to help ensure end to end security.

I've heard about encryption for wireless networks, what is it and why aren't we using it?
We recommend using the campus vpn we are not using security methods such as WEP but have implemented an open authentication wireless network. The future direction is to use WPA2 which is more secure then the encryption methods have been in the past.
Can I walk around while accessing the network?
Yes, this is called 'roaming'. However there are limitations. Area of campus are broken into regions because of network infrastructure issues. If you don't cross the boundary of the region you are in you will be able to move around without loosing connectivity. If you should cross one of these boundaries you may maintain a wireless connection but you will have to reauthenticate via the WIPA process to access the network again. As we move to a centralized management or LWAPP implementation reauthentication will no longer be necessary.
How can I get my Gaming Console or other devices on wireless?
Login into the WIPA web page with your gatorlink id and password from your computer. In the lower left hand corner there is another login box that allows you to sign in a guest. Click "sign in guest" and enter the address that you received through dhcp, most likely a 10.30.x.x address. Now click "sign in" on the bluesocket page. This should allow access for your device based upon your credentials.
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