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Roam Freely with eduroam

By Marissa Malone

Published May 19, 2015

Since UB adopted the eduroam Wi-Fi network in 2014, traveling students, faculty, and staff no longer need to worry about exorbitant roaming data charges or guest credentials for Internet access when visiting other academic and public institutions.

Marissa Malone (UB Student, Class of 2015) has a dream of traveling to all seven continents, and she’s already visited four. When not globetrotting, Marissa studies Communication, Spanish, and Management at UB while working for both UBIT and Career Services.

eduroam acts as one large, secure and worldwide wireless hotspot, developed for international research and the educational community. According to eduroam’s website, there are 12,960 eduroam hotspots worldwide.

UB Roaming

In order for UB to join eduroam’s service, Kathleen Murphy, Service Manager for Network and Classroom Services (NCS), part of UB Information Technology, said, "UB needed to upgrade network access and establish routing to the eduroam infrastructure, which ensures that visitors are rerouted to their home institution’s network for their secure, wireless needs."

Currently, UB is one of 232 institutions across 69 countries to join eduroam. "UB introduced eduroam as a convenience to UB traveling faculty, staff, and students," Kathleen added.

Professor Robert Straubinger with UB’s department of Pharmaceutical Sciences first encountered eduroam while on sabbatical in Europe, "It’s very helpful to know I will have both mobile device and computer access to the Internet seamlessly on short working visits. Configuration and any necessary troubleshooting can be done at home before travel, and I have not had to change my settings - or log in manually - to any eduroam network during my travels."

Connecting Around the World

eduroam coverage map as of May 2015 from eduroam.org.

As of April 2015, Jerry Bucklaew, Network Architect with NCS, reported 217 unique visitors to UB’s eduroam from 19 different countries. According to UBIT’s Key Performance Indicators, eduroam traffic accounts for .7% of all Wi-Fi connections at UB.

64% of eduroam authentications are from the United States, 16% from Canada, 6% from the United Kingdom and 15% from other countries (AU, BR, DE, DK, ES, FR, HK, IE, IT, LV, NL, NO, PL, PT, SE, TR). See an interactive coverage map.

Before traveling outside of UB’s community, students, faculty, and staff should configure their devices to the eduroam network. “eduroam seems much more secure than the free Wi-Fi hotspots provided in various cities,” added Professor Straubinger. “You never know who controls the other Wi-Fi networks or has access to the information passing through it.”

For more information about eduroam and how to connect, contact the CIT Help Desk at (716) 645-3542 or ubithelp@buffalo.edu, or stop by the Lockwood 2nd Floor Cybrary counter.