UWNet Frequently Asked Questions

My registration failed and it tells me I'm already registered. What should I do?

What is UWNet?

How do I connect to UWNet Services?

I need a campus NetID to access the UWNet services. How does that work?

How much does UWNet cost?

What regulations govern the use of UWNet Internet access?

Do I need to bring my own computer?

Am I required to have anti-virus software?

Am I allowed to have a static IP address?

What kind of cables do I need to connect, and where can I purchase them?

Why won't my email client send/receive mail on UWNet?

What are the links to popular antivirus/malware/spyware downloads?

My registration failed and it tells me I'm already registered. What should I do?

This situation occurs when you try to connect to UWNet wireless through an unregistered router. Before connecting to UWNet, register your router first. To register your router, find its MAC address located either on the router itself or on the box it came with. Power on the router and make sure it is connected to the (UWNet jack) on the wall. On your laptop/computer, connect to your router’s network via wired or wifi and open up an internet browser. You will be redirected to our UWNet registration page, where you can register the router using the first option named “WIRELESS ROUTERS, GAME CONSOLES, PRINTERS AND OTHER NETWORK DEVICES.” Follow the instructions and enter your credentials and the MAC address of the router. It is recommended to use step 5 “Click here” to populate the correct MAC address of your router. You may need to reboot your router—turning it off by unplugging it and booting it back up—to obtain a valid IP address that will connect to our network. 

What is UWNet?

UWNet is part of the Division of University Housing's Information Technology Department and provides data, video and voice services for the use of University Housing residents and registered guests. Internet service is provided for all residents living in University Housing Residence Halls and University Apartments. In addition, UWNet also provides the Residence Halls, University Apartments, and University Houses with expanded basic cable TV service. University Apartments residents seeking telephone service will need to contact a Madison area service provider and set up these services themselves. UW-Madison does offer a selection of television channels on the Digital Academic Television Network (DATN) that can be viewed on any computer that is connected to the UWNet network.

If you have questions or need to open a support case, please call the DoIT Help Line at (608) 264-4357 and choose option 3. You may also visit the DoIT help page. 

How do I connect to UWNet services?

Go to the UWNet Internet Access page for information on how to connect to the network in your room/apartment or to the UWNet Wireless network.
Go to the UWNet Video Service page for information on television services.

I need a campus NetID to access UWNet. How does that work?

When you connect to the UWNet network, you will be asked to provide your campus-assigned NetID as part of the authentication process. Normally you will receive a NetID account when you attend the incoming Freshman orientation or when you sign up for classes. If you are a registered student and you do not yet have your NetID, contact the campus help desk at 608-264-HELP or visit the NetID activation web page. You will need to provide your Wiscard student ID number in order to activate a NetID.

Registered visitors and guests staying in University Housing who are not eligible for a campus NetID can use the third option on the registration page to register the device as a Guest. Guest registrations last for 365 days.

How much does UWNet cost?

Residence Halls

The cost of Net data and video services are included in your Housing contract, so there are no additional fees. If you would like to have a telephone line installed in your room, visit the UWNet Voice Service page for information and costs.

University Apartments

The cost for UWNet data and video service is included in your monthly rent. UWNet does not offer voice services at University Apartments. University Apartments residents seeking telephone service will need to contact a Madison area service provider and set up these services themselves. UW-Madison does offer a selection of television channels on the Digital Academic Television Network (DATN) that can be viewed on any computer that is connected to the UWNet network.

What regulations govern the use of UWNet Internet access?

UWNet network access is governed by a University Responsible Use Policy. For more information, visit the campus Information Technology web page.

Do I need to bring my own computer?

While the convenience of UWNet Internet service will offer great advantages to Housing residents, there are plenty of computing resources on campus to meet the needs of those who choose not to bring a computer to campus. For residents of the University Residence Halls, there are Technology Learning Centers (TLC) that operate computer lab facilities from within Housing buildings that emphasize academic success in a technological environment. There are also numerous computer labs (InfoLabs) on campus, some offering 24-hour access, that are open to all UW-Madison students and staff. It may be wise to check with your academic major department to see what computer recommendations they have.

The University Apartments Community Center also offers the use of two computer kiosks for residents of University Apartments. These kiosks provide residents access to web browsing.

If you are thinking about purchasing a new computer, students and staff are often eligible for discounts on computer hardware and software. The Division of Information Technology (DoIT) has a Computer Showroom (265-SHOW) in the Computer Sciences building, with many models and a professional staff to answer questions.

Am I required to have anti-virus software?

Campus policy requires that all computers connected to the campus network are running up-to-date anti-virus software. Residents can download a free, fully functional copy of Symantec Anti-Virus from the Campus Security web site. At this site you will find a variety of tips for keeping your computer secure and protected.

Am I allowed to have a static IP address?

No, IP addresses on UWNet are assigned dynamically by a DHCP server. Residents using unauthorized static IP addresses may lose network access privileges. If you are interested in having your own web page, check out the free service My Web Space offered by the Division of Information Technology (DoIT).

What kind of cables do I need to connect, where can I purchase them?

To connect your computer to the data jack in your room/apartment, you will need a Category5 or Category6 Ethernet data cable. To connect to the TV jack in your room you will need a coaxial video cable. If you need a data or Coax cable they are available for purchase at any Housing Dining Services convenience store, University Apartments Community Center or DoIT Tech Store.

Why won't my email client send/receive mail on UWNet?

Residents using non-web email clients must use the secure campus mail server for sending mail. Visit this campus help desk knowledgebase article for instructions to configure popular email clients.

What are the links to popular antivirus/malware/spyware downloads?