Wireless Internet Access – Frequently Asked Questions

General Setup Information

Timberland Regional Library is pleased to offer free wireless Internet access to patrons. Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about using wireless in the Library.

What is wireless?

  • Wireless networking uses radio frequency signals to connect your computer to the library’s network in order to access TRL’s Internet connection.

Why wireless?

  • Wireless networking allows library patrons to bring their own laptop computers to the library to access the Internet, as well as the library catalog and the library’s Reference Databases.
  • Patrons can use their wireless laptop computers in most areas of the library – they are not restricted to the normal computer areas.
  • Patrons with wireless laptops do not need to wait for an available library computer to access the Internet.
  • Public wireless allows more computer and Internet access in the library, while saving the library the cost of buying additional computers.

Which Timberland libraries offer wireless?

  • Wireless access is available in all TRL libraries.

What hours is the wireless service available?

  • Daily 6:00am - midnight

What do I need to use wireless at the library?

  • TRL uses the WiFi standard known as IEEE 802.11a/b/g.
  • You will need to bring your own laptop computer to the library with built-in WiFi capability or a WiFi-compatible network card installed. Other portable wireless devices such as handheld computing devices and Internet enabled cell phones may also work.
  • Most WiFi equipment should work but TRL cannot guarantee that your equipment will be compatible with the library’s wireless network.

What software do I need?

  • You need a web browser such as Internet Explorer or Firefox.
  • You should have up-to-date virus detection software installed on your laptop.
  • If you use a pop-up blocker, you must temporarily disable it or allow pop-ups from the library’s wireless authentication system in order to login to the wireless network.

Will I need a login and password to connect?

  • No login or password is required to connect to the wireless network.

Can the library help me configure my computer?

  • Library staff do not provide technical assistance for connecting to the wireless network.
  • Everyone’s computer hardware and software are different so you are responsible for knowing how to configure and restore the settings on your own computer.
  • TRL is not responsible for any changes you make to your computer’s settings.
  • If you need assistance, you may need to contact your hardware or software manufacturers.

Can I access the library catalog and reference databases?

  • Yes, you can access the library catalog and Reference Databases from the TRL home page. Because you are inside the library's network, you do not need a library card to access the reference databases.

Are there any restrictions on my use of the Internet?

  • There is no time limit on wireless sessions.
  • Wireless connections may time out after a length of time without any data to or from your computer. If you are filling out a form or email message for an extended period of time, it is suggested that you save your work periodically, or browse to a new webpage in a different window.
  • Wireless reception and connection speeds are affected by your distance from the TRL wireless equipment and by barriers such as brick walls, metal bookshelves, stairways and people. The number of computers in use in the local library and traffic on the wider Internet will also affect speed. Reception and speed may improve if you move to a different location in the building.
  • All wireless Internet access goes through TRL’s Internet content filter which blocks Internet sites that contain adult content. There is no provision for turning off the filter on the wireless network.

Can I print while using wireless?

  • Printing is not available on the wireless network. If you need to print, save your work to a floppy disk or a USB jump drive, or email the files to yourself. You can then login to one of the library’s Internet computers and send your job to a public printer. You may need to reserve a session if a library computer is not immediately available.

Is my information safe while using wireless?

  • The library’s wireless network is not encrypted or guaranteed to be secure from interception. Information sent to or from your laptop could be intercepted by anyone within three hundred feet with a wireless device and with the appropriate software. Keep this in mind if you are accessing sensitive business or personal information. It is recommended that you access private web information only through a secure browser connection with SSL enabled.
  • It is recommended that you not enable file sharing or print sharing when using a public shared network. If you do so, other people may gain access to your hard drive and files or misuse your computer.
  • You should have have up-to-date virus detection software installed on your laptop.

Electrical Outlets

  • Plan to have your laptop battery fully charged when you come to the library.
  • Some libraries have electrical outlets available that you can plug your laptop into, other libraries have NONE.