2009-2010 Tampa Campus Tech Fee Wireless Network Upgrade

Project Overview

USF Information Technology Communications received Student Tech Fee funding to upgrade and expand USF's wireless network coverage. These upgrades will deliver blanket 802.11n wireless coverage in a number of buildings throughout the Tampa campus. This will include over 400 new access points, 42 gigabit Ethernet switches, and 47 Uninterruptable Power Supplies to help protect the network from outages.

Affected Buildings

Over the next couple of months, ITC will install new wireless access points in the following buildings:

  • BSN
  • CPR
  • ENG
  • LIF
  • PHY
  • SOC
  • MHC
  • EDU
  • ENC
  • CIS

Project Timeline

The exact timeline for the upgrades is still being determined. These upgrades will require that cabling be installed to each new access point location, wired network electronics must be installed to support the higher 802.11n speeds, and of course the access points themselves must be installed. This detailed schedule will be updated as dates are confirmed.

What users should expect before, during, and after the upgrades

Prior to the upgrades, ITC will coordinate with departments and classroom scheduling to identify times which will cause the least disruption to users as we run the new cabling and install the access points. We will also schedule after-hours times for the installation the new wired network electronics, which in some cases will require disruptions to the existing building networks.

During the cabling and access point installations, the existing wireless network will remain operational. The cabling installation will be performed by IT approved contractors. You can expect to see these folks on ladders in hallways and offices installing the new cabling. As we install the new network electronics during the after-hours maintenance windows, we will enable the new access points and retire the old wireless equipment. At this time, the new network will be operational and available for use.

After the upgrades, users will notice a greatly improved wireless signal throughout the upgraded buildings. In addition, any users which have 802.11n capable network cards will see a speed increase. Even users with older network cards should see a speed increase due to the improved signal strength and advanced radios in the newly installed access points.

Questions and Comments

Questions and comments regarding this project should be directed to Joe Rogers (joe at usf.edu, 813-974-7369).