About the Michigan Tech Data Network
Telcom maintains a high-performance data network which is built on an extensive wired infrastructure and available throughout all campus buildings, all university's residence halls rooms, and on-campus apartments. It is Telcom's goal to reliably delivery any service, on any port, anywhere on campus. To this end, we maintain our standards to current industry standards. All campus academic and administrative buildings are serviced by fiber-optic network cabling with networking connections on campus ranging from 16x1 Megabit ADSL2+ to 10 Gigabit Ethernet.
The campus also maintains a wireless LAN network which provides subscribers with roaming access to the network using a variety of devices including PDAs and laptops.
A small number of remote locations are also connected to the campus via point-to-point microwave or licensed millimeter wave links. These off-campus links are engineered for 99.999% uptime even during occasional extreme conditions to provide users with the same network services afforded to the campus population.
Michigan Tech has adopted a converged network strategy to support packet voice, data, and video services on the data network. The primary technology deployed is Ethernet switching, which supports speeds up to 10 gigabits per second. The campus gateway is comprised of a carrier-grade router and bandwidth shapers to manage the off-campus traffic. With increased demand for networking services, additional products and services are continually being added to our suite of services.
The Michigan Tech Data Network is supported through user fees for services. These fees currently provide 64% of the total funding required to maintain the university network. Services used by our campus constituents include:
- 10/100/1000 Mbps ethernet for client connections
- GE or 10GE for servers
- Roaming wireless LAN access
Funding and Service Pricing Models for Data Network
Michigan Tech charges a monthly fee for all network connections. The rate varies based on the speed of the connection, the number of hosts that will be connected, and whether or not the connection has a routable address or belongs to a private bridge group.
The fee covers the cost of all the hardware, the software, hardware and software maintenance, cable infrastructure maintenance, and the support service (DNS, DHCP, LDAP) costs of providing the connection. The charge does not cover the cost of the engineering staff that builds, designs, and troubleshoots the network. These costs are covered by the University General Fund.
The service-pricing model is adjusted every year to reflect changes in costs for providing these services.
Research and Development Initiatives for Michigan Tech's Data Network
Networking technology is a continuing developing technology, and as such, it is very important to follow advancements in this field closely. Telcom does not participate in 'pure' research initiatives. Rather, our focus is on investigating new technologies with a goal of finding cost-effective, well engineered, and highly functional features or services that would benefit the Michigan Tech community or improve the performance, security, or reliability of the existing network.