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Hooking up smartphones to school "public" networks

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Started by anne robertson 26 Jul 2012 11:24am () Replies (7)

Hi there, we are in the process of going BYOD.  It hasn't been a very effective process for many reasons which I won't go into here but one of the issues we have is that our IT Department (technical) have said that students can not hook their smartphones up to the school network. Every device that is to be used on the school network has to be "enabled" (I am not a tecchie so I am not sure what they do to "enable" them) and the mac address is noted, the students can then log in to the "public" network with their usual username and password.  We are told that it is not possible to do that for Smartphones and especially Android ones.  Please can anyone advise what happens in their school and whether it is possible to hook up Smartphones.  We think that kids are far more likely to bring smartphones as they are easier to carry around and that is just what kids use!


  • Steve Voisey (View all users posts) 03 Sep 2012 12:36pm ()

    I've had too many bad experiences with Android. I bought an android phone then the following weekend upgraded to wpa2 enterprise - which required me to upgrade my firmware, which required me to root (jailbreak) my phone...

    Also: viruses. Sophos antivirus has detected a virus on my son's adnroid when he plugges it into his PC.

    Also: my organisation has seen clients who are running Exchange 2003 have intermittant problems with Gingerbread.

    Sorry, I know this is not meant to be an android/iOS discussion.

  • Bruce Saunders (View all users posts) 03 Sep 2012 12:09pm ()

    Yeah Proxy settings and Androids are not friends. I am trying to convince the techies here to have a wireless option that will not require a proxy setting (we have one that works now, I think it bipasses proxy). We did have limited success using a proxy with my android phone (samsung galaxy) but this was on Froyo not ice cream which I have now. There was the ability in wifi settings to push the menu button then select advanced settings, which gave a place to enter a proxy and port. Frustrating though, as I always had to complete this workaround when changing from working at school to anywhere else (home). I also trialed a workaround using the opera browser, where a proxy can be entered into the config of the app, however this only gave me internet browsing and did not let me use all the other features of the phone and other Apps. Our school currently has two wireless networks, one for teacher computers and one for everything else. The everything else option is currently being trialled and is expected to change significantly next year when we roll out wireless across the school.

  • Rebecca Ronald (View all users posts) 01 Sep 2012 8:28pm ()

    We're having trouble with android devices too. Have got the wireless set up and running sucessfully on other devices, but my smartphone (I was their test case) won't hook up - there is nowhere to enter the proxy details or something like that, my techhie tells me. He is still working on it.

  • Gerard Macmanus (View all users posts) 28 Jul 2012 5:14pm ()

    We are doing the same at present for our boarders. Every student that wants access to the wireless has to have a specific BYOD acceptable use policy signed by their parents. We record their MAC Address of there device(s) and allow access through Active Directory. This is to make sure that the students that have signed up are allowed access and not their mates using someone elses login (we consider this stealing). We monitor all MAC addresses and logins to make sure that they are not abusing the privilege.

    We allow any device, though we have had issues with older androids as they will not allow Enterprise networks - WPA2 connections, the other we have hit is nokia phones. We have also found a couple of old WIndows XP installs that don't allow for a WPA/WPA2 connection. So the old second hand hand me down laptop that students are given is an issue that we need to communicate to parents. We need to communicate that the device must be capable of 5Ghz - 802.11n.

    We do allow iTouch/iPhone/iPad to be connected and andriod 3+ tablet/phones. 

    Enterprise networks are different to a home wireless network, these use high levels of encryption to protect the data traffic from eaves-dropping as well as users can enter there own credentials instead of a passphrase, this allows for greater security.

    Students will also be the same when we allow them on, they will need to sign an acceptable use policy for BYOD and have there device checked, serial numbers and mac address will be noted for security reasons that the students identited with the BYOD survey that we carried out. Also, we have found with the boarders a couple of users with outdated anti-virus packages, for the security of the network we have denied them access.

  • Melissa Moore (View all users posts) 27 Jul 2012 3:04pm ()

    It is the same process on an iPhone as an iPad - same seetings menu etc

  • Karen Mills (View all users posts) 27 Jul 2012 2:01pm ()

    Not sure about Android phones but if I want to access our school network on my iPhone, then DHCP has to turned on so my phone has its own IP address. Then I simply connect one of the Wireless networks.

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