Recommended Routers for UW Housing Residents

A summary of which personal routers are compatible with ResNet

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Recommended Routers for UW Housing Residents 

Should I Bring a Router to UW Housing?

If you are living in a dorm hall on campus, a router is not recommended for general internet use cases. The provided HAP (Hospitality Access Point) in your room should be sufficient for web browsing and getting schoolwork done. A router is only recommended in dorm buildings when students wish to use a device that requires a personal network, such as a wireless printer, or a streaming device, such as a Chrome Cast, Amazon Fire Stick, Roku, or Apple TV. Students that play Video Games also find that bringing a router may fit their needs as well. 

If you live in a non-dorm UW Housing location, like University Houses, Harvey Street Apartments, or University Apartments, AKA Eagle Heights, a router is recommended. Harvey Street Apartments residents may get a stable connection to UW Net, but the signal strength in some locations isn't perfect. At University Houses and Harvey Street locations, the Data Jacks on the walls in the apartments are plug-and-play, so residents should be able to bring a supported router, plug it in, and enjoy their WiFi connection. University Apartments (Eagle Heights) residents will need to register their router to be able to get a WiFi connection in their apartment. 

If you have any questions about your location and if a router is recommended, please contact the University Housing Technology Services Help Desk, either at ts@housing.wisc.edu, or by calling (608) 265-2717.

Supported Routers

The brand TP-Link is recommended for personal routing in UW Housing. Most routers will work, unless they are a modem. Linksys models work well and Netgear is also typically a reliable brand. A router that does not have a modem feature will have a WAN/Internet port, or have an internet symbol. The WAN port should be distinguished because it will likely be a different color. Some Belkin routers will need to be setup as an access point in the router management page as they typically expect a connection to a modem.

The pictures below show a recommended router from TP-Link, the TL-WR940N. The port that should be used to get an internet connection is the blue port on the back. The yellow ports can be used to split the wired Ethernet connection to other compatible devices. WiFi connection should be adequate for most use cases.

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TP-Link TL-WR940N Blue Wan Port 


Not Supported Routers

There is one model of router that will not work with our infrastructure. This is the Netgear WNR2000v5 - N300. Here is a link to a forum by another school who experienced similar issues.

We also do not support most modems. Cable modems will look like the picture on the left below. They need a coaxial connection to the internet. DSL modems will look like the picture on the right below.

They need a phone line connection to the internet. Some modems may have a WAN port and in rare cases may function on our network. Modems may also function as a wired switch, but will not function as a wireless router if an Ethernet cable is run from the data jack to one of the LAN ports

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Cable Modem DSL Modem


~Created by Ian Simmons on 7/28/2017

~Updated by Hayden Breene on 7/18/2019




Keywords:Routers Wireless ResNet   Doc ID:74927
Owner:Ian S.Group:UW Housing
Created:2017-07-28 10:38 CSTUpdated:2019-07-24 13:37 CST
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, DoIT Tech Store, UW Housing
Feedback:  9   2