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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why are you upgrading the network?

A: To improve the speed, reliability and coverage of the wired and Wi-Fi networks. Our staff and students will benefit from a much better experience. As our needs evolve and the world requires faster and faster connectivity with multiple devices, we’re investing for the future.

Q: What are you upgrading in the network?

A: We will be consolidating and replacing approximately 3,000 network switches in University buildings and data centres to provide a more resilient and dynamic network service for both Wi-Fi and wired connectivity.

Q: Will there be an impact to the service I receive during this work?

A: Where possible, we’ll keep disruption to a minimum. As this is a programme of extensive improvements, you may experience some short interruptions to Wi-Fi, however we will keep you informed of this downtime well in advance through a variety of communications channels including email and messages cascaded via Estates collleagues.

Q: What will happen on the day(s) of the Wi-Fi upgrade?

A: Our contractors will be replacing the Wi-Fi access points around your building. As these are situated on ceilings or walls, this means the contractors will be using ladders. Where possible the work will take place out-of-hours, however due to the amount of equipment which needs changing, most work will take place during the day. Our contractors will always clearly carry identification.

Q: Will I need to do anything after the improvements?

A: You will not need to make any changes. If your computers, phones or tablets are connected to the eduroam or UoM_WiFi networks, they will reconnect automatically.

Q: What will happen to the wired network (Ethernet/LAN) sockets in my office or room?

A: As more people discover the benefits of using Wi-Fi, the use of wired network sockets is decreasing at the University, and indeed worldwide. The increased performance and coverage of the upgraded Wi-Fi network will mean that staff no longer need to rely on connecting to the network with a cable. While we are planning to reduce the number of wired network sockets, we will ensure that we don’t disconnect sockets which are still in use; even if you use the socket only occasionally.

  • All active data outlets will be transferred to the new network
  • Any live data outlet that has not been active for 1 Year and 1 week (53 weeks) will not be transferred and will be made inactive.
  • If an inactive data outlet is required to be made live to support a device requiring connection to the University IT Network then contact the IT Support Centre.
  • An inactive data outlet may have its cable reutilised to provide for additional Wi-Fi access points. If the re-use of a Data Outlet for connecting a device that has been reutilised for Wi-Fi is confirmed as a requirement within a six month period then IT Services will supply this free of charge.

Q: Who do I contact if I have any questions about these improvements?

A: Email IT.Modernisation@manchester.ac.uk and we will get back to you as soon as we can. If we consider that the information may be useful (and it is not specific to you), we may add your question to this page. Please let us know if you do not want this to happen.

Q: Who do I contact if the disruption is longer than expected, or I need to report an unexpected fault during the change?

A: For any disruption occurring outside of the upgrade dates, telephone the IT Support Centre’s 24/7 phone line on 0161 306 5544.