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Saint Mary’s retires ResNet and BelleAire Wi-Fi, introduces updated BelleNet

| Friday, January 31, 2020

Soon after the start of the new semester, Saint Mary’s students noticed a new feature to campus life.

The old Wi-Fi systems, ResNet and BelleAire, were retired and were replaced by BelleNet, the newest version of Saint Mary’s Wi-Fi. 

“We intentionally allowed the old ResNet network to remain active for a little more than a week beyond the start of the semester to allow for everyone to transition,” chief information officer Todd Norris said in an email to the campus community. 

However, by the second week of the semester, ResNet and BelleAire were officially deactivated and replaced by BelleNet. 

BelleNet is active in both the dorms and academic buildings, unlike ResNet and BelleAire, which were separated by location. 

BelleNet is also accompanied with DeviceNet, which operates specifically for residents’ televisions and other large devices that require an internet connection. 

“These changes add security to our network to keep your information safer,” Norris said in his email.

In general, the reaction to the change has been positive, sophomore Emily Tobias, an Information Technology Helpdesk consultant, said. 

“Professors were just confused and slightly frustrated at first, but once we told them to put in their username and password they were fine,” Tobias said. “There were some professors who ended up on the guest network, so we did have to help them get from guest to BelleNet which took some time, but we got them sorted out eventually.” 

The Helpdesk consultants are responsible for assisting faculty and staff with technology problems. 

“Some [professors] had to come in to the Helpdesk personally to get BelleNet installed,” Tobais said. “It was a little harder for them, and there is a slightly more complicated process for Windows Computers, but once they came in we usually got them taken care of.” 

But there has been some student frustration with BelleNet, Tobias said.

“It is better than ResNet, but there are still improvements that need to be made,” junior Greta Minnema said. “Some people have their TVs on BelleNet instead of DeviceNet and it makes BelleNet slower, which is annoying.” 

First-year Grace Anspach agreed with Minnema, but said she is happy with the increased BelleNet speed. 

“I’ve been having a little trouble connecting to BelleNet with my laptop,” Anspach said. “It keeps disconnecting. Although when it is connected, it is faster than it was with BelleAire or ResNet.” 

For the most part, however, the student reaction has been positive. 

“I think BelleNet is fine,” junior Grace Grueninger said. “It didn’t work for one day, but that’s less than any issue I’ve ever had with ResNet.” 

Grueninger said she hopes she can use the new network both for schoolwork and personal use. 

“Hopefully my parents will be able to start FaceTiming me again now that the Wi-Fi’s been fixed,” she said. “They used to try, but the WiFi kept going out on calls.”

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