3rd Tübingen Digital Freedom

On July 6, 2024, the Tübingen Digital Freedom Day, organized by Chaostreff Tübingen, will take place. This event features workshops and talks on ethics, politics, creativity, data protection, sustainability, and artificial intelligence. Its goal is to promote self-determination and digital literacy. The event is open to everyone and will be held at the Westspitze in Tübingen. For more information and participation details, visit the event website.

Fiber optic advertisement for the dorm is retro.

Imagine you’re living in a student dorm that has had fiber optic since 1974. And then, in 2024, you suddenly get an advertisement for the “soon arrival of fiber optic” in your mailbox.

Great!

If everything goes well, by this year, every room will be equipped with a synchronous gigabit connection, meaning 1,000 megabits of both upload and download.

That’s at least our goal for the 20th anniversary of our Network Work-group

Four out of nearly 6000 connections blocked

In rare cases, we must temporarily block certain connections to protect our network. This is done because of what are called abuse reports, which indicate that abusive activities might be happening from a connection. We receive this report from the BelWü-CSIRT (Computer Security Incident Response Team), and our task is to stop the abuse with appropriate actions, which we do by turning off the connection of the room.

What is an abuse report?

In short, an abuse report is triggered when suspicious or unusual activities are observed coming from an internet connection. This could be, for example, sending spam emails or unauthorized attempts to access other computers. Often, you may not be aware of this behavior because it is usually caused by viruses or other malicious software that has secretly installed itself on one of the devices in the network.

No blame on you

We want to emphasize that such a blocking is in no way meant as a blame towards the affected users. In most cases, you are victims of malicious software acting without your knowledge. Our priority is to quickly identify and solve the problem to prevent further damage.

Why we block the connection

The fastest and most effective way to inform you about a possible security issue is by temporarily turning off the connection. This measure immediately attracts attention and prompts most users to contact us right away. This way, we can address the problem together as quickly as possible.

We are almost always available

Please note that we are also available on weekends and outside regular working hours. If your internet connection unexpectedly stops working, do not hesitate to contact us. We are ready to analyze the problem and offer you steps to solve it. Together, we can ensure that your connection is quickly safe and fully functional again.

Conclusion

The security and reliability of our network are very important to us. Through proactive measures like these, we want not only to ward off potential threats but also to raise awareness of the importance of network security. We thank you for your understanding and cooperation in keeping our shared digital environment safe.

If you have any questions or concerns, we are always here for you.

Quo vadis Gigabit?

In Geislingen, Sigmaringen, and Albstadt, we have installed Gigabit switches for quite some time. It was more of a coincidence that these places were equipped with Gigabit internet before Tübingen and Hohenheim.

We have just checked how many residents of the dormitories actually use the offered Gigabit internet.

The results are somewhat sobering: In Albstadt, 53% of the residents use the Gigabit internet, in Sigmaringen it’s 33%, and in Geislingen only 25%.

This raises the question of whether we have not informed well enough that Gigabit can be used with the right router, or whether the residents simply do not need such high internet speed.

Workload Admissions Winter Semester 2023/24

Since we have some time, we would like to provide a brief review of the admissions wave for the winter semester of 2023/2024.
The wave of admissions can also be clearly seen in the volume of emails.
All emails were answered manually and in the shortest possible time.
I will write a separate article about the most notable routers of this admissions wave.

WS2023-24 Mails
WS2023-24 Mails by time
WS2023-24 Mails by day
WS2023-24 Mails by month

Network restructuring on the weekend of November 25th and 26th, 2023.

Next Saturday and Sunday, we finally have the long-awaited network restructuring happening.

These changes are necessary to improve the performance and reliability of our network.

To minimise the impact on you, we’ve planned to carry out the restructuring early in the day. During these times, there are usually fewer users online, which should reduce any inconvenience.

The scheduled offline periods will each last about an hour. We understand that this may be a bit inconvenient temporarily, but we are confident that the long-term benefits will outweigh any short-term inconveniences.

We appreciate your understanding in advance.

Update Nov 25th 2023 4:15 PM:

Yesterday, Malte worked until 11:30 PM, and Lucas until 1:00 AM, preparing and configuring.

The implementation of network changes started this morning at 10:00 AM and resulted in a longer network interruption across the entire network (student housing and dormitories) at 10:30 AM.

The interruption lasted from 11:30 AM to 2:00 PM and then from 2:30 PM to 3:30 PM. The work was completed by 3:30 PM, and the last device came back online at 4:00 PM.

During the cleanup following the work, no further outages are expected.

Whether work will be needed again on Sunday depends on whether disruptions are reported to us or if we discover issues that are not functioning as desired.

Water damage Pestalozzistrasse 41

The water is running through our electrical cabinet, some ports have already failed. Our hardware is now off the grid and will be scrapped.

We will set up new hardware later this evening and place it next to the cabinet in the dry.

Schimpf-Eck (Am Lustnauer Tor 1) July2023

Surprisingly, construction work for Schimpf started last week. Each room, as usual in our dormitories, will have its own network connection with a double network socket, and one connection will be active.

We don’t consider a comprehensive alternative like WLAN networking, which is often desired, to be practical here. Those who have dealt with connecting hundreds of devices to Eduroam will understand why we are avoiding it.

In each room, you can set up your own secure and easy-to-configure WLAN with a simple router for around €35, allowing you to connect everything from a printer to a PlayStation.

The connection of the WG units in Schimpf Eck depends on the work at Pfleghof, whose starting date is still unknown to us. As surprises are possible, we prefer not to estimate when it will be ready. Getting new DSL contracts doesn’t seem sensible to us. We hope that the WG units will find a fair solution to redistribute the internet access costs or find a way to get rid of these contracts once the dormitory is stably connected to our network.

The final connection via fiber optic to our network is planned but not yet confirmed.

Hohenheim Uplink Upgrade 11:30 am till 4 pm

Good morning dear Hohenheim residents!

Today, the Uplink upgrade will be fully implemented. If everything goes well, you will be running on 10G afterwards, and the outages will come to an end.

To transport the Uplink technology from the temporary location at Schwerzstraße 2 to the new location at Egilolfstraße 57, we will need some time. Unfortunately, during this time, the Hohenheim dormitories will be offline.

Since we have to unplug the device and then reconnect it in a different building, it cannot be avoided. However, we will hurry as much as possible.