Network, WiFi, and VPN

Summary of How to Use Wireless at Hampshire (TL;DR)


  • When in the dorms, connect to the dorm-named network ('enfield' in Enfield, 'dakin' in Dakin, etc)
  • When in academic areas, connect to 'gromit'
  • If it tells you you have no internet access, open a web browser and try to go anywhere. If you're not automatically redirected to our sign-in page, type "" into the address bar of the web browser
  • You can also use 'eduroam' in both places (and many other college campuses, including all of the Five Colleges), but in some dorm areas, coverage may not be as good.
  • If you use 'eduroam', your username is the <> form (make sure the is on the end), and your password is your normal Hampshire password.
  • If you use an iPhone, make sure "Private Wifi Address" is turned off.
  • For more details, including how to register a device that doesn't have a web browser, see below.

Faculty and Staff

  • Use 'wallace' in most cases on your computer.
  • If it tells you you have no internet access, open a web browser and try to go anywhere. If you're not automatically redirected to our sign-in page, type "" into the address bar of the web browser
  • You can also use 'eduroam' (and on many other college campuses, including all of the Five Colleges)
  • If you use 'eduroam', your username is the <> form (make sure the is on the end), and your password is your normal Hampshire password.
  • In general, don't use 'hampguest' (except on your phone/tablet). That's for guests. It has many restrictions on its access.
  • If you use an iPhone, make sure "Private Wifi Address" is turned off.

Details and additional information about network access at Hampshire College

What if I want to use a device that doesn't have a web browser?

If you have a device, such as a smart lightbulb, a Google Home device, Alexa, game system, etc, that you want to use on our network, you can manually register it. Details here.

Additional wired network details

There is wireless connectivity in every dorm room and wired ethernet connections in most. Almost all computers today come with wireless connections, but not all come with a wired (ethernet) port. If you have a desktop, you probably have one built in, and you'll be all set. If you have a laptop and you want to use a wired connection, you may need to purchase an adapter to do so.

If you choose to use an ethernet connection you will also need an ethernet cable to connect to the wall jack. Many rooms have a beige wall plate with two ports - one labeled "Voice" and one labeled "Data". The "Data" port should be ethernet, but in a few cases, the "Voice" port actually is. Other rooms have wall plates with blue ports in them that should provide ethernet connectivity. If you have a small 5.5" x 3.5" rectangular white device on your wall with a lit-up-blue "U" logo on it, lucky you - you have a wireless access point in your room, and there should be four network jacks on the bottom of it that will provide gigabit connectivity to our network. Access points of other sizes may have ports on them that look correct, but they will not work to access our network.

Ethernet does provide lower latency, sometimes higher speed, and generally greater reliability. In particular, if you are gaming, you may prefer to access our network using a wired connection.

NetReg: Network Registration and Activation

If you use a dorm-named network or 'gromit', you will need to register. Registration is required for both wired and wireless connections. You can register as many computers as you want and it only needs to be done once per network interface. You do not need to re-register if you change rooms, but you will need to register for both wired and wireless connections.

When you first plug your computer into the network or connect to our public wireless network, open up any web browser. You will be redirected to the NetReg page, which requires you to login using your regular Hampshire account. If you're not redirected automatically, just type "" into the address bar in your web browser. As mentioned below in more detail, turn off any custom DNS settings or "private wifi" settings.

Trouble with NetReg?

If you have trouble registering your device with us it may be because of incompatible DNS (Domain Name Service) settings; your device may report no internet service. DNS is responsible for interpreting web address that are typed into web browsers (, for instance) and pointing the browser to the corresponding IP address. Sometimes DNS settings are changed to use a specific DNS service--commonly Google--but that is incompatible with our NetReg system as well as some other security features we use on our network. Our DNS settings should automatically be set up on your computer unless you have some previous manual settings. Instructions for accessing DNS settings on a Mac can be found here, but do not use the Add ("+") function--only use the Remove ("-") function to remove any settings that are removable (you cannot remove our automatic settings). Similarly on Windows you can access the settings here and just remove any DNS settings that may have been preset.

Connecting your Phone to our Network

Your phone has to be registered to our network in the same way, through Before you go there, though, turn off your cellular access and select our network. If you use an iPhone, make sure "Private Wifi Address" is turned off.

Details about Wireless on Campus

We currently have wireless connections available in all public spaces, including the library, academic buildings, and the dining commons, as well as in all student housing.

There are four discrete wireless networks available in academic areas:

  • Eduroam (private): Eduroam is a global federated wireless network for the research and education community. It allows members of participating institutions to use the same wireless configuration they use at their home institution when visiting other participating institutions. Hampshire community members may find this particularly useful because it has been implemented at all of the Five Colleges; if you set up eduroam at Hampshire, you can go to the other institutions in the Five Colleges, open your laptop, and be instantly online.
  • Hampguest (public): This network does not require a login and has an entirely separate connection to the Internet. In this way, it is like sitting in an internet cafe; you are not really on Hampshire's network while using this wireless network, and as such cannot access anything that is on-campus only, and on-campus services will be slower than when using wallace or the dorm networks. This network is only available in the public areas of campus. Students should register their guest's computers under their names if they have guests that need access in the dorms. In this way, you are taking responsibility for the actions of your guests on our network.
  • Gromit (private): This network requires a current Hampshire login, and provides full, direct access to on-campus services, with the exception of certain resources only available to faculty and staff.
  • Wallace (private): This network requires a current faculty or staff Hampshire login, and provides full, direct access to all on-campus services.

In the dorms, the network name matches the housing area, and requires a Hampshire login, like Gromit. For instance, in Merrill, the network name is "merrill."

Private wireless access points are not supported and should not be used. They will cause problems for you and your neighbors. If you have poor wireless in your housing area, please submit an IT ticket on TheHub.

Peer to Peer Filesharing, Copyright Info, and Network Management

We are aware of the fact that there are legal and illegal uses for P2P, and differentiating between the two is problematic. Therefore, we may need to limit all uses of P2P, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. We ask that users of our network limit their use of P2P to legal and reasonable activities, and have respect for the other users of our network.

We will not and do not provide support or troubleshooting assistance of any kind for P2P activities. Please note that sharing of copyrighted material with persons not authorized to have possession of such materials is illegal and is punishable by fines and/or imprisonment.


VPN allows Hampshire employees and students to access Hampshire services from off campus that are not normally available from off campus. If you're planning to use it, you should install and test it before you need it.

About our Network

Hampshire College's network consists of a fully-switched infrastructure with a 10-gigabit fiber backbone in a star topology and at least 100base-T to the desktop. In many cases, there is gigabit to the pillow, and our multimedia labs all have gigabit. Every building on campus has ethernet and wireless coverage. Hampshire gets its server connectivity, which is highly redundant, through the University of Massachusetts, and its commodity bandwidth through Crown Castle, both running over the Five College Fiber Network. We have more than twice as much bandwidth per student than any other institution in the valley, and our 2Gbit connection has only rarely gone over 50% utilization.

Security is a serious concern for all academic institutions, and Hampshire College is no exception. We follow a traditional security model consisting of edge firewalls, NAT, distributed routing with OSPF, many virtual Local Area Networks with associated subnets, access control and routing at building edges as well as in the core, a regular patching and update schedule, and SSL encryption of all sensitive traffic.

Interested in more details? View the technical description of our network.