Bandwidth and Traffic

A. What is UBRL?

UBRL stands for User-Based Rate Limits.

B. Why was UBRL implemented? 

The rationale behind moving from the old “Top-Talker” system to the new UBRL system is to give equal and uninterrupted access to all students. This is a more equitable system then the previous “Top-Talker” system that shut off users for 7 days when they had gone over the bandwidth limit. The old system was determined to be inequitable and detrimental to students’ academic progress at the university because of the high demand for internet based resources.

C. When was the system implemented?

The new UBRL system was implemented in January 2010. The system limited the download and upload speeds to 1.5 Mbs and 768 Kbps respectively. In November 2014, the speed limits were increased to 4.5 Mbps each.

D. How does UBRL work?

Access to network resources within the University (on RUNet) are considered internal traffic and are not limited under the UBRL. Access to resources outside of the Rutgers network are considered external traffic and are limited to maximum download speeds of 4.5 Mbps and maximum upload speeds of 4.5 Mbps.

E. What is the difference between internal and external traffic?

If you are connecting to Google, YouTube, or other such sites, this is considered external traffic. Any websites hosted within the Rutgers network are internal. A good guideline for checking if a website is internal to the Rutgers network is checking the URL of the website. Sites ending in “rutgers.edu” (e.g. my.rutgers.edu or sakai.rutgers.edu) are generally internal sites and are not limited by UBRL.
 

It is important to note that there are websites affiliated with the University which are not hosted within the Rutgers network, although these sites are sometimes linked from Rutgers websites. The Indexes and Databases collected by the Rutgers Libraries page, RutgersOnline.net, and the MSDN Academic Alliance Software Center are all examples of Rutgers related resources which are hosted outside of Rutgers. UBRL will affect information that is downloaded or uploaded from these sites.

 

Access

A. What programs can I run on my computer?

The OIT Acceptable Use Policy clearly states that all users on the network are entitled to an expectation of privacy. As such, ResNet does not restrict or monitor what programs you install and use, as long as you abide by the rules set forth in the AUP.

B. What Web sites on the Internet am I not allowed to visit?

ResNet does not restrict nor monitor any sites on the Internet you choose to visit, as long as you abide by the rules as explained in the OIT Acceptable Use Policy.

C. Am I allowed to use my computer to run my own services?

The ResNet Network Rules prohibit the use of a computer in a residence hall residence for several purposes, among them being:

  • FTP servers that contain copyrighted material (Software, MP3 Files, etc.)
  • E-mail servers
  • Any service that has the intent of commercial use, such as a web site that is being used for profit
  • Any program designed to scan for, seek out, or exploit network or host vulnerabilities
  • Any services that attempt to allow access to private space addresses to the outside world, such as proxy servers
  • DHCP servers
  • Any other services that violate the AUP

Be aware that ResNet does have the ability to monitor your activity. A report that your computer is in violation of the ResNet Network Rules or the OIT Acceptable Use Policy may result in ResNet's use of network activity logs to verify those claims.

D. Why can't I access a non-Rutgers Internet service that my friend outside the network can visit?

ResNet does not currently block any access to outside services. If you are having difficulty connecting to a particular service, it may be a limitation of the Rutgers "private space addressing". Each residence hall appears to be one IP address to the Internet. If anyone tries to connect to that address, the network does not know which computer the intended host is trying to connect to, so it simply gives up. Services that connect from your computer to the outside world usually work; while services that try to connect from the outside to your computer frequently fail. While that may appear to be an unreasonable restriction, it does in fact help protect your computer from "hackers," and other attacks from outside of the Rutgers network.
 

ome programs are able to work by requesting a "reverse dns lookup", meaning your computer tries to contact a service, and then that service needs to connect back to you in order to work. As before, the request gets lost inbound and therefore a connection cannot be established. Many file sharing programs and online games have this limitation.
 

In addition, many online game servers also allow only one connection per IP at a time. Since each Rutgers residence hall appears to the outside world as one IP, you may be denied access to such a service if someone else in your residence hall logs on to that service first.

E. When I am home, I can connect to [service], but when I am at school, I cannot What should I do?

  • If you are trying to have someone from the outside connect to your computer, try connecting to their computer instead.
  • Contact the administrator of the service in which you are trying to connect and ask if they have had similar problems with "private IP space" in the past. You may also be able to find documentation on the service's web site.

Please be aware that ResNet does not support connections to commercial services.

F. Why am I having trouble connecting to AOL Instant Messenger?

AOL Instant Messenger only accepts a certain number of connection attempts per computer for any given amount of time. Because all computers in a given residence hall have the same IP address to the outside world, AOL thinks that many people trying to sign on at once from the residence halls are really one person trying to sign many times in a short time span. Therefore, if too many people try to connect at once, the AOL server disallows access for a brief period of time.

G. Does ResNet allow port forwarding so I can use a particular program?

Unfortunately, ResNet cannot enable port forwarding on the Residential or Wireless networks.