• Northern Michigan University
  • NMU


WiMAX is the next generation (4G) of wireless. This type of signal has much broader access than the WiFi signal, meaning that you can connect to the NMU network from more places off campus than ever before. However, NMU WiMAX is not a replacement for the NMU WiFi network.  Connecting to WiFi or to an orange data jack should always be your choice when you are on the Northern campus. WiMAX may be an alternative when you are off campus.

Connecting to WiMAX

  • How to complete installation of WiMAX? Click here to go to the Academic Computing Web site, go to "Computing News" and select the NMU WiMAX Update link for your model of notebook.
  • What to expect from WiMAX connection?  This link brings you to a page with a detailed explanation of how to find WiMAX and what to expect when trying to use WiMAX.
  • Even though the WiMAX network is seen on campus and usable, it is not meant for wireless access when on campus. The notebook's have WiFi / WiMAX cards, not WiMAX only. The WiFi network was designed for high density in building and outdoor use on and close to campus. The WiMAX network should be used when NMU WiFi is not available. The WiFi network is 20-25 times faster than the WiMAX network. 
  • Intel and NMU are currently working on an application that will automatically select the correct wireless network when the notebook is powered on.

Where is it found?

WiMAX Coverage 2011The NMU WiMAX network covers the cities of Marquette, Gwinn, Ishpeming, Negaunee, K.I. Sawyer, Houghton, and Chocolay township. This map contains details about coverage areas and expected signal strength. You can help us identify hot spots and dead spots within the city by sending information to helpdesk@nmu.edu with "WiMAX" in the subject line.

The WiMAX network is not targeted to work in the residence halls or on campus. This is why the wireless card in your NMU notebook is both WiFi and WiMAX enabled. When on campus, use WiFi.  You may have to turn off your WiMAX and turn on your WiFi to access the WiFi network.

When should it be used?

WiMAX has a broad signal.  It is not necessarily a faster Internet tool. In fact, WiFi is about 20-25 times faster than the WiMAX network.  When you are on the NMU campus, you should turn WiMAX off and then connect to the NMU WiFi network as it will be a faster Internet provider.  Likewise, when you are on campus and have access to an orange data jack, it will always be your fastest, strongest Internet connection.  But when you're off campus, WiMAX is what you should choose to use.

Why is WiMAX important to NMU?

Northern has the largest educational WiMAX network in the United States and is one of the first universities to deploy a WiMAX network. With more than two-thirds of NMU students living off campus, being able to provide Internet access off campus helps expand the learning environment.

Who are our partners in building the network?

We've been working with some of the world's leading technology companies to build the new WiMAX network, including Intel, Lenovo, Motorola and Cisco. These tech leaders are including NMU students in the research and implementation of this endeavor.  NMU thanks them for their continued support!