October 16, 2007

TOO SHY ON WI-FI? Steven Erickson emails: “Several months ago you mentioned on your website that Panera bread was offering free wi-fi. Indeed, they are and that is the sole reasons I now go there instead of Starbucks. But, Panera won’t let users run VPN, which is a pain for me given that Yale requires VPN to access library stuff. Plus, with all of the security holes in open wi-fi networks, VPN adds a greatly needed layer of security. Given how much your blog is read, perhaps a post might spur some interest in changing this policy?”

I doubt it, but good point.

UPDATE: Various readers email that they’ve used VPN successfully at Panera, and reader Bill Sommerfeld emails: “Part of the problem here is that there are a bunch of different technologies all called VPN which look kinda similar to the user but do very different things on the network. It is unfortunately not difficult for a network operator to inadvertently block one or more of these. It’s nearly impossible for a network operator to block all of them.”

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