EAA's network administrator, Brian Huth, answers questions about the newly-upgraded Wi-Fi system that will be available at AirVenture 2011. For additional questions, please contact Brian at firstname.lastname@example.org. Locate the Wi-Fi stations and hotspots on the AirVenture 2011 map.
Q: I have an older computer and can't see or connect to the SSID (i.e., the name of the wireless local area network) - what do I do?
A: Our system runs on the 802.11g standard. Your device must support this standard or our Wi-Fi will not work for you.
Q: What devices work on your system?
A: Basically any device that is Wi-Fi capable. This includes laptops and netbooks, PSP systems, Nintendo DS or other Wi-Fi gaming systems, readers and tablets.
Q: Are there services for people who have older computers or no computers to access the internet during AirVenture?
A: Yes, there are two locations where AirVenture attendees can access the internet. EAA will have computers set up in the Welcome Center (located on the corner of Celebration Way and Knapp Street) and in the Campground Internet Café (located on the corner of Schaick and Diescher). However, space is limited and you may have to wait to use a computer.
Q: Is there a password/code for the connection?
A: For SSID "EAA Wi-Fi" there is no password and it is open to the general public. You may also see "EAA Vendors" show up under your available Wi-Fi networks. This connection does require a password and is open only to vendors on the AirVenture grounds.
Q: Is the network secure? Is there any type of anti-virus?
A: No, the network is an open network and is, therefore, not secure. There is no firewall or anti-virus. Please make sure to update your computer protective software before you use the EAA Wi-Fi for safe internet browsing. Understand that use of EAA's wireless connection is entirely at your own risk and EAA is not responsible for any loss of any information that may arise from the use of the wireless connection, or for any loss, injury, or damages resulting from the use of the wireless connection.
Q: What speed can I expect when using the network?
A: The speed of the internet depends on the time of day that you are trying to connect and from what location. Generally, morning and evenings have the heaviest traffic in the campground areas and the traffic is heaviest on the main grounds during the day. The connection speed will range from dial-up to DSL.
Q: Can I go anywhere on the AirVenture grounds and find a Wi-Fi signal?
A: No, our system is a 'hotspot' model, which means that only certain locations will have a signal, and the signal usually covers a 100 ft. circle. The visitor and campground maps indicate where Wi-Fi hotspots are located.
Q: Will I get Wi-Fi service in the campgrounds?
A: There are four Wi-Fi stations and numerous Wi-Fi hotspots located throughout the campgrounds, but you will have to go to these places to get the best service.
Q: My signal is not constant and keeps fading. Why is this happening?
A: The access points in the Wi-Fi hotspots are doing their best to ensure a strong signal, but a hostile environment (e.g., high heat, microwave interference, and heavy foliage) may cause the signal to fade at times. Getting closer to the hotspot will make the signal stronger.
Q: I keep picking up a Wi-Fi signal, but I am not near any Wi-Fi hotspots. Why is this happening? Can I use it?
A: The Wi-Fi signal from a Wi-Fi station will bleed-over into areas that are somewhat near it. The signal from a station reaches much farther than the signal from a hotspot, so you are fortunate if this is your situation. If the signal says "EAA Wi-Fi" feel free to use it, but keep in mind that it will not be as strong and could fade easily, resulting in the end of your internet-surfing session.
Q: What is the difference between a Wi-Fi hotspot and station?
A: Hotspots are located throughout the grounds, providing a Wi-Fi signal. There are a few Wi-Fi stations in the campgrounds, which also provide basic amenities, such as electricity, shelter, and shade. The signal will be much stronger at Wi-Fi stations.
Q: I was in the middle of sending e-mails online and I got kicked off. Why?
A: Our system has a one-hour timeout for all users per hotspot. We do this to avoid inactive or idle users who slow down the connection or prevent other users from taking advantage of the service. The good news is that you are allowed to use the connection as long as you want. All that you have to do is re-sign in on the terms and conditions page and you will be directed to airventure.org for another hour of use.
Q: Will I be able to stream a movie at night?
A: EAA highly discourages streaming because of the large amount of bandwidth that it consumes. Each access point has a limited amount of bandwidth and it is important to be courteous of other attendees who also need to use the Wi-Fi network. Please avoid downloading or uploading large amounts of data, or playing online video games while on the network.
Q: Can I pay extra for premium service?
A: The public Wi-Fi access at AirVenture is a courtesy service and is free to use. Unfortunately, there is no EAA-provided premium or top-tier service available.
Q: Can I bring my own personal mobile hotspot (e.g., MiFi) device?
A: Mobile hotspot systems can be a benefit, especially for those areas where a Wi-Fi signal cannot be secured. EAA certainly doesn't discourage people from bringing them. Please keep in mind that mobile hotspot systems run off of local cell-phone towers and, due to the demand on these towers during AirVenture week, they can become very busy. This may result in a weak or slow connection for your mobile device.
Q: I have a smartphone, but the Wi-Fi that I need to use my apps isn't working. What's wrong?
A: In order for your Wi-Fi-enabled applications to work on your cellular device, you have to open the browser and accept the terms and conditions. Once you do this, you will have one hour of use like you would if you were using a computer.
Q: I have a corporate laptop and my e-mail program isn't sending e-mails. What should I do?
A: Due to restrictions with our Internet Service Provider, port 25 (the port used to send e-mail) is blocked. In order to access your e-mail, you will have to use your company's web-based e-mail option. Please remember to make these arrangements if you plan on sending company e-mails at AirVenture.
Q: My corporate laptop doesn't allow open Wi-Fi connections. Is there something that I can do?
A: Unfortunately, EAA cannot do anything to help your situation. If you have this restriction, it is necessary for you to contact your IT department to see if the restriction can be lifted temporarily.
Q: I am having a problem with my Wi-Fi connection. Is there a place that I can go for help?
A: A staffed Wi-Fi help desk (920-230-7831) is in the Campground Internet Café (located on the corner of Schaick and Diescher). Support hours are 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily.
Q: If I have a general problem with my computer, can I bring it to the Wi-Fi help desk?
A: The Wi-Fi help desk is only able to offer guidance on Wi-Fi related issues. If you have a question or need a repair, it would be best to visit a local computer retailer or repair shop.