Wi-Fi at Boston University, United Kingdom

Every year, 600 smart college students study at Boston University’s U.K campus, located in the heart of London. Now, with a world of information at their fingertips, they’re even smarter, thanks to wireless Internet access from Sputnik.

Ivan Dimitrov, campus system administrator, researched a variety of wireless options before selecting Sputnik. He wanted to provide students with wireless access via username/password, and to track and manage activity on every access point on the network. He needed a solution that was easy to implement, flexible, and cost-effective enough to deployed throughout the campus. Finally, because the network would be deployed in a densely populated area of London, he needed to avoid interference from nearby Wi-Fi networks.

“It took me exactly six minutes to set up Sputnik Control Center. It is very easy to configure and integrate, and has very impressive features.”
—Ivan Dimitrov, Boston University British Programmes

Ivan tried other wireless solutions, but found them hard to manage, expensive, and difficult to scale. They didn’t work well with the firewalls installed at various campus locations. And there was no way to remotely upgrade network equipment.

Searching the web for a better answer, Ivan found Sputnik. In six minutes, he had Sputnik Control Center running on an inexpensive, “low spec” Intel server. With the money he saved on hardware, he was able to have a second server on standby for disaster recovery. Then he began to deploy Sputnik access points across various campus buildings and dormitories. The students took to the network immediately. Wi-Fi is heavily used in classrooms, where students access content to supplement and enhance lectures.

Ivan has real-time visibility into the wireless network as a whole, and the operation of any access point. He can take immediate action if there is a network problem, wireless interference, or if someone is using too much bandwidth.

Ivan will expand his wireless Sputnik network to additional student residences by the end of the year. In addition, the University is looking into using Sputnik to offer paid Wi-Fi services to library visitors, and outdoor wireless access.

At Boston University, access to knowledge has always been the goal. With Sputnik, it’s in the air.