I’d been having network connection problems for a week or so — the network booting me at random intervals, anywhere from ten minutes to 40 minutes — and finally, when messing around with the installation of Internet Explorer I can run under Wine on my Linux installation, I figured out that it was indeed the campus network blocking me because I hadn’t installed a virus scanner and some kind of weird Korean firewall app.
Which only exists for Windows, of course, because Windows is the only OS in Korea, right?
Oh, the DRM!
Anyway, I had the network guys come by and I was explaining the problem to them in Korean. Their eyes glazed over. I called Lime, who said, “You’re explaining it fine!” but one of them had already left the room to ask her what the problem was.
When push came to shove, they did the only thing they could do: they totally unblocked our connection, so that I could run Linux in my home. Which, after two years of having network problems every four months or so, is kind of nice.
But they also renamed my wireless router for no apparent reason. Yes, my quirkily -named “Shibboleth” was suddenly dubbed “Linksys” for no good reason. I don’t know if they just reset the defaults without asking or telling me, but it took me a while to figure out where my home network had gone.
The PC that’s running Linux Mint dealt with it fine, but my wireless setup on my older laptop had been precarious for ages, and depended on wifi-radar finding a connection called “shibboleth.” When that failed, no more wireless connection, and try as I might, I couldn’t reconfigure wifi-radar.
Happily, after a few hours, I found the answer I needed: wicd, an alternative wireless management app. Beautiful stuff, the kind of thing I can use anywhere… way better for me than wifi-radar ever was. If anyone needs to try it out, the tutorial here was a lifesaver for me.
But I’m still a little annoyed. These guys could have saved me a few hours of work by not renaming my router. (I would have felt like a dork just renaming it back to avoid fixing a deep-seated wifi problem, to be honest, but I didn’t want to spend any more time installing anything or tweaking computer setups until next week, after I finish with grading, and this was my main computer that was knocked out of commission.) Ah well, that’s an afternoon toasted. At least there’s this evening. And I’m down to my last stack of essays.