In article <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org
>> But cell phones are a curse to some degree. A local University that
>> shall remain nameless instituted a no cell phone policy for students.
>> That quickly went downhill when professors cell phones would ring during
>> class time, etc.
> That's nothing. Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, Tennessee
> has an interesting policy to allow interconnect to the campus network.
> When my first niece went off to school, several family members gave me
> money to purchase the parts needed for me to put a nice computer
> together for her to take off to school with her. In addition to a
> number of other pieces of hardware, I put a dial up modem and a NIC
> card in it. It was a fairly common one (in fact my PC has the same
> model in it).
> When she got there, she called me and said that the folks at TNU said
> her NIC card was no good and they wanted to charge her ninety dollars to
> install a 3Com card in it.
> I didn't believe it was defective and told her not to pay them to
> install that card. After a couple of days, she called me again and
> told me that they wouldn't hook her up until a 3Com card was
> I called the I.T. department at TNU and asked what was going on. I
> was told that the school policy said that only 3Com NIC cards could be
> used to connect to the campus network. Needless to say I was a little
> upset that they were going to make me drop another ninety dollars into
> that computer.
> But, I wasn't going to let them get the money. I called around and
> found a deal on a 3Com card and had them ship it to her at school.
> Fortunately, she had a classmate that was a Saturday afternoon PC
> tech. He installed it for her and got her connected to the network.
> I spoke to the dean at the school where I was taking computer
> networking classes. He told me that while this was completely
> unorthodox, that TNU was far from being the only school doing
> something so ridiculous. His own daughter went to a school that
> required a specific brand (and I don't remember what he said it was
> except that it wasn't a 3Com card). She had to fork out fifty dollars
> for the card and sold it to another student when she graduated.
> I wish someone in a position to do so would blow the whistle on this
> practice of soaking the students for the money for these cards. It's
> unethical at best.
> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Other than the fact that she apparently
> was not able to hook herself up to the network, I wonder how the
> school would know what was or wasn't there. In other words, if she now
> were to open the computer and install the original card in there
> instead, how would the school ever find out, or do they search dorm
> rooms looking for contraband hardware, etc? PAT]
MAC addresses contain a manufacturers code that takes up the first
couple of bytes. It would be fairly trivial to set a router up to
refuse any MAC not containing said bytes. But then, it would be just
as trivial to reprogram a MAC on a NIC to look like a 3Com even though
it's a $10 D-Link.