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Student Network Down at CCC

By Jordan Kuga

A technological disaster struck at Chemeketa during the second week of the fall term.

Students couldn’t check their Facebook page or other vital social networking and mandatory sites. “It was annoying that I had to use my own data to check my college email and other online activities,” Audrey Alderete, a first-year student working on an AA degree, said. “Chemeketa is supposed to supply internet to its students.”

Alderete wasn’t alone in expressing her frustration.

John Savage, another first-year student, said he could connect to the student network but kept being kicked to the guest network.

Turns out, the students were correct.

According to Jeff Moore, the college’s manager of IT Core Systems Administration Teams and Helpdesk, the student wireless network was not functioning.

In brief: While some devices were connecting, others were not.

Moore said the problem was one of capacity: The number of devices connecting to the college’s network has doubled since last year.

“We basically overloaded the routing being done by the firewall,” he said. “The firewall said, ‘I can’t do anymore routing.’ ”

To correct the problem, the college’s networking team installed an actual router on Oct. 9 and solved the issue for the next couple of years.

Rossella Mariotti-Jones, a Chemeketa Telephone/Networking and Security specialist, said the upgrade was done at night “because we wanted to do it when not a lot of people were on so we wouldn’t disrupt the students.

Moore said, “There was a limitation on the firewall of 2,500 clients.”

In this case, however, the term clients doesn’t just mean the people using the network.

Dan Loop, the college’s Network Systems specialist, said that every device connecting to the internet counts as a client.

“It’s your cell phone, your laptop, your tablet. If you’ve got three things, you are connected three times,” he said.

According to the technology team, the new router is now capable of supporting all of the devices that are being used at Chemeketa.

How long will the patch last?

Moore said that if the growth that the college has been experiencing continues, another upgrade will be necessary in two or three years.

“There are a lot of challenges we face daily with the network,” he said.

But for now, at least, the disaster has been dealt with: Students can once again check their Facebook page.

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