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Connectivity

Eduroam: New certificate

Thursday, April 8th, 2021

Since the beginning of this year the MatiesWiFi service is no longer available for any staff or students for access to WiFi on campus. Instead you will be required to use eduroam for wireless connections. This change was mainly made to ensure better security. More information.  

To further improve security and comply to eduroam’s GEANT guidelines we had to implement a new security certificate. This certificate will lead to better performance and speed up the sign-on process in future.

If you connect and sign on to eduroam on a Windows device, depending on the versions, you will be prompted with the messages below. This will happen only once. Click on Connect and continue working as usual.  Similar messages will appear if you work on devices with Linux or Apple operating systems.

Windows 8.1

 

Windows 10

 

 

 

WiFi during load-shedding

Tuesday, March 16th, 2021

It seems we are never really done with loads-shedding and even though we try our utmost to prepare for the imminent interruptions, there is only so much we can do.

We realise that a stable internet connection in classrooms is vital for lecturers to stream academic content to students. In most university buildings we have generators in place to provide a backup for load-shedding. However, unfortunately we cannot guarantee uninterrupted supply of power. The reasons are as follows:

When load-shedding starts all network equipment loses power and the generator automatically kicks in. The network equipment will do a so-called “cold-boot” which can take several minutes. Subsequently it can take 10 minutes to 30 minutes (in some extreme cases) for the network to function optimally again.

Adding to this delay it could happen that network equipment will not recover automatically when the generator is activated. In these instances the network and WiFi will remain down for the whole duration of the load-shedding slot. 

Stabilising equipment and connections during load-shedding isn’t practically possible since the effort must be repeated once Eskom switches the power back on. However, we do have a monitoring system which checks for the equipment that does not recover by itself. 

In most cases WiFi and the rest of the network should be operational with the help of generator power after about 10 minutes. To ensure that the transition is seamless and network connectivity continues, it would be helpful if staff in the building could, after about 15 minutes after the generator started, check if the WiFi is active or not. 

Reactivate your username before 1 April

Monday, February 8th, 2021

Network access (usernames) for staff will expire at the end of March unless you reactivate your username.

We suggest that you reactivate yours as soon as possible to ensure uninterrupted access to IT services (internet, email, SUN-e-HR etc.). Keep in mind that the cost centre manager still has to approve your request before your username is reactivated; allow sufficient time for this to be done to avoid disruption of your service.

You will receive an email from helpinfo@sun.ac.za indicating that your username (“engagement”) will expire soon. Three notifications will be sent before the end of March. Alternatively, you can go directly to the reactivation page.

Once logged into the reactivation page, you can select the services you want to reactivate.  You are encouraged to read the ECP (Electronic Communication Policy) before reactivating.

Choose the services (network / email usernames and internet usernames) you want to register for (see images below).

 

Reactivation of internet usernames is no longer necessary and can be ignored.

Make sure you select the correct cost points and if you’re unsure ask your cost centre manager. Click Accept and Reactivate.

 You will receive a notification stating that your request has been submitted, as well as a confirmation email. 

The webpage will indicate that it will be activated as soon as it has been approved by the cost centre manager. When the cost centre manager approves the reactivation request access will be extended to the end of March next year.

If you have completed these steps successfully and still receive emails from helpinfo@sun.ac.za urging you to reactivate, please go back to the reactivation page and make sure the appropriate boxes are checked: Your Network / Email usernames Your Internet usernames

 If you are still not able to reactivate, please raise a request at servicedesk.sun.ac.za

Fortinet VPN replaced by Citrix gateway

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2021

Many of you have been using FortiClient VPN for quite some time to access internal University services i.e.

  • TeraTerm
  • SSH or remote desktop to your work computer/server, usually for access to specialist software or resources.
  • Full drive mapping (G: H: and P:) and scope of services as if you are in your office. 

However, FortiClient is built on outdated technology and from the end of February no longer be the default VPN (Virtual Private Network).

The new service has been made available by Information Technology for students and staff.  Citrix Gateway will allow you to access internal, University network-based applications from the Internet. This service, as well as the University, is protected and secured by multi-factor authentication for identity verification and requires that a device must meet specific security requirements before it is allowed on the University’s network.

Windows users:

If you are a Windows user, we recommend that you replace FortiClient with Citrix Gateway as soon as possible. 

Linux users:

Unfortunately, our Linux users can only use Citrix on the following versions: 

  • Ubuntu LTS 14.04 LTS and 16.04 LTS. (32-bit and 64-bit)  

If you are using other versions of Linux, you will still have to use FortiClient until an alternative becomes available. FortiNet installation instructions can be found here. 

Apple users:

Users with Apple devices such as MacBooks and iMacs can log a request for assistance on the ICT Partner Portal.

How to I get Citrix Gateway?

Students and permanent staff with Windows devices can migrate to the new VPN service by going to their web browser to the site https://securevpn.sun.ac.za and follow the on-screen instructions.

SunID users need to log a request on the ICT Partner Portal and select the Remote Access option right at the top. Once a technician contacts you and all required info is received, you can migrate to SU VPN MSP service by going to their web browser to the site https://suvpnmsp.sun.ac.za and follow the on-screen instructions.

Alternatively, you can log a request for assistance with the setup of VPN on the ICT Partner Portal.

FortiClient VPN replaced by Citrix

Tuesday, December 1st, 2020

Many of you have been using FortiClient VPN for quite some time to access to internal University services i.e. TeraTerm.  However, FortiClient is built on outdated technology which will no longer be available at the end of January 2021. If you are a Windows user, we recommend that you replace FortiClient with Citrix  Gateway as soon as possible.  Currently there is no support for all Linux versions at the moment but we are investigating possible solutions.

The new service has been made available by Information Technology for students and staff. Citrix Gateway will allow you to access internal, University network-based applications from the Internet. This service, as well as the University, is protected and secured by multi-factor authentication for identity verification and also requires that a device must meet specific security requirements before it is allowed on the University’s network.

Students and permanent staff can migrate to the new VPN service by going to their web browser to the site https://securevpn.sun.ac.za and follow the on-screen instructions.

SunID users can migrate to SU VPN MSP service by going to their web browser to the site https://suvpnmsp.sun.ac.za and follow the on-screen instructions.

Alternatively, you can log a request for assistance with the setup of VPN on the ICT Partner Portal.

 

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