Hohenheim 26 of May Upgrade

It’s time!

Last night, we were given the task to carry out the upgrade.

As mentioned before, we had already prepared a new location for the uplink, which will enable all Hohenheim residences to go online.

To transport the uplink technology from the temporary location at Schwerzstraße 2 to the new location at Egilolfstraße 57, we will need some time. During this time, the residences in Hohenheim will unfortunately be offline.

Since we need to disconnect the device and then reconnect it in a different building, it cannot be avoided. However, we will do our best to expedite the process.

The estimated duration will probably be around one to two hours this afternoon, with several short outages as we make the necessary adjustments throughout the day, starting in the morning.

We will update this post once we have more information.

Hohenheim 16th of May

We were able to accomplish almost everything we had planned yesterday.

We dismantled and disconnected the three generations of network technology that were stacked on top of each other.

We managed to clean the room to some extent with a broom we found. Once we speak to the janitor, we will find a place for all the electronic waste (see picture).

One of the switches currently in use didn’t look promising during the removal, so we will replace it this Tuesday evening (starting from 6 PM, depending on traffic).

This means that we will need to unplug the cables of the residents of Egilolfstraße 51 to 59 again, and they won’t have internet during this time. Some rooms will be offline for about an hour, while others will experience shorter outages.

Afterward, the room should be prepared for the installation of the main network connection for the entire Hohenheim area.

The relocation and upgrade of this connection still depend on the IT department of the student services.

We hope that with this cleanup operation, we have eliminated any obstacles that could potentially further delay the final resolution of the network issues in Hohenheim.

Hohenheim 25th of April 2023

All Hohenheimer dormitories are connected to our network through a central hub.

Until now, this hub was located at Schwerzstrasse 2.

The building is undergoing renovation and will be without power for a while.

The plan was to relocate the hub to the newly renovated Schwerzstrasse 3.

Unfortunately, the connection between the buildings was so poor that we had to move the hub to Schwerzstrasse 1, which delayed the internet interruption accordingly. We planned for 10 minutes, but it took 3 hours.

During operation, we found that the connection there works, but is also too poor for continuous use.

Therefore, we will replace the connections again at around 12 p.m. today.

To keep the interruption short, we will send two teams. We expect the interruption to last less than an hour, ideally just a few minutes.

Update 4:50pm: Thanks to qualified feedback, an unexpected new problem that occurred during the repair of the fiber optic problem was identified and fixed around 4:30 pm. I’ll quote the translated message and thank you on behalf of the Netz-AK.

Hi, we know you’re working hard to switch over to Schwerzstraße. Since we haven’t heard anything new about the switch attempt at 12:00 since this morning’s blog post, we wanted to let you know (in case it hasn’t already been done) that if everything is back to normal, our flat still has problems. Greetings

Nevertheless, we also understand messages that explain to us that the internet is important for studying.

The fiber optic problem was traced to the edge of our network and optimized soon.

Hohenheim March 24th 2023

Good evening,
the maintenance work that was announced lasted from 2 PM to 6:30 PM.
The internet outage lasted longer than expected due to unexpectedly high attenuation of the fiber optic cable.
However, those moving from Schwerzstr 2 to 3 can now expect gigabit in every room.
Everything should be working everywhere again now, but if it’s not, please try restarting your router before contacting us.
Lucas and Heinrich

Hohenheim: Fruwithstraße and Egilofstraße from 53 onwards

As part of the cleanup work that the Network Working Group in Hohenheim is finally able to tackle, I plan to publish some events on our blog.

Here’s a short text explaining why we’re worried about the cabling in the mentioned dormitories, since only a few have looked at the cables in their rooms.

I’ll compare the cables from the dormitories in the Hibuka building in the French Quarter in Tuebingen, where I lived extensively. There, we had cables for the doorbell at the front door (2 wires), cable for the telephone connection TAE (6 wires), cable connection (2 wires TV, 2 wires radio), and a double network socket (two cables with 8 wires each).

Why two network cables for one room? If one cable is damaged, the other can be used as a replacement, and you don’t have to lay a new cable from the room to the basement.

The TERA cabling is much more economical. Over a single cable with 8 wires, two wires are used for TV, two for the combination of doorbell and telephone. This leaves 4 wires to establish a 100 Mbit network connection.

If one wire is damaged, the internet network access is gone.

If one wire of the network cable is damaged in the French Quarter, there will only be 100 Mbit instead of 1000 Mbit or we switch to the spare cable.

Given the fact that TERA cables are only manufactured on demand and this type of cabling seems to be very rare, I assume that the savings in installation costs compared to the risks in operation have not prevailed.

From a purely network perspective, we have only half a network cable, without any reserves in the mentioned dormitories.

Nothing will change without construction activity. But building is not within the scope of our volunteer working group.

If there is a cable, we will make the best internet access possible for you.

Even though we can’t do much at the moment, please inform us about any possibly defective network connections and other problems. If only your apartment knows about a problem, nothing will improve.

Thanks for your interest,
Heinrich from the Netz-AK (short for Netzwerk Arbeitskreis = Network Work-group)


Upgrade Schwerzstrasse 1

We need to make some unplanned changes to our hardware in your basement.

We can start working from 6 PM in Hohenheim.

Your internet will be down while we work, but we’ll finish by 10 PM. After that, all rooms will be back online, and the speed will be increased to 1 GBit from the previous 100 MBit. You can check the speed by running our speedtest.


Speed test

We have set up an internal test for you some time ago. At netz-ak.de/speedtest, you can see how much your connection in your dorm room can handle.
We hope that all devices connected to our network via cable have a ping of less than 5 and an insignificant jitter.

A high jitter of over 5 indicates that the device from which you are measuring is connected via Wi-Fi and may be affected by what we call the 2.4 GHz problem.

Both download and upload should be just below the respective maximum of your building, i.e. 100 MBit/s or 1 GBit/s (1000 MBit/s). You can find out how fast the connections in your dormitory are under the expandable map on the  facts and figures page.

Currently, none of the dormitories are reaching the limit of their connection.

Partial outage Egilolfstraße 49 & 51 2022-12-28

Today we exchanged a damaged network switch in Hohenheim. The outage affected around 24 connections. During replacement, the connected houses in Chausseefeld and Welfenstraße were also briefly offline.

Unfortunately another device failed during restart. We can only exchange this device tomorrow on December 29th, 2022. Until then around 24 connections will be offline in Egilolfstraße.

Hohenheim 2022-12-11

On Sunday we will be doing some work in Hohenheim.

You could be offline for at max 30/45 minutes at a time, but no longer.

Please contact us, if you have problems, we’ll wait “only” one hour in Hohenheim after we finished working.

Work will be between 11am and 5 pm on Sunday 11th of December.

Update Sunday 3 pm: Egilofstrasse shoud be up and running now. If you are still offline, reboot router and if that does not help, contact us!

Why I wouldn’t buy a FritzBox for my dorm room

A FritzBox has a bundle of functions that are helpful for a family home or an office.

You don’t need the following functions:

  • VDSL modem
  • landline telephones, faxes, fancy door bells
  • mesh, repeater and power line functions

For all of that you are paying when you are buying a FritzBox.
That’s why they are more expensive that simple Wi-Fi router and do not improve your internet speed.

A simple router with 5 GHz Wifi costs about 35€, which is half the price of a used FritzBox 4040.

Setting up a simple Wi-Fi router is easier than setting up a FritzBox with all the functions you can and will not use in our dorm.