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For support: call extension 5-Help (212-305-4357) or email us
Faculty and Staff FAQs

Wired Network

How can I connect to the network?

For any computer set up you should first communicate with your department's business office to verify that you are following all internal procedures. The Connecting to the Wired CUMC Network web site outlines general procedures on registering and connecting a computer or other device. All systems must be properly registered with CUMC/NYPH's CORE Resources prior to using the network.

How do we get IP (network) Addresses?

Each system that connects to the CUMC network must be registered via the IP Request Form. This requires that you know the Hardware Address of the system that will be connecting (also known as a Physical, Ethernet or MAC address). This Hardware Address is unique to the computer's network interface card, or NIC, world-wide, and is how the computer will be recognized on the network.

How do we find the computer's hardware address?

An ethernet card hardware or adapter address (also called a MAC address) is a unique, 12-digit, hexadecimal (0-9, A-F) number assigned by the ethernet card's manufacturer. The address or string of characters may be formatted as shown in these examples: 0260.8C3B.7A21 or 02:60:8C:3B:7A:21 or 02-60-8C-3B-7A-21. Because it is unique world wide, it this address is used to identify your computer on the campus network.

All systems, regardless of operating system, must be registered in order to be permitted access to the network. Users will be required to provide their device's hardware address when registering.

The hardware address is often included in any documentation, labels or ordering information from the vendor or manufacturing company of a computer or device. If you do not have this information the address can be found when using the computer itself, please see instructions on the wired network page for help.

Can I choose any IP Address?

No, you may not choose your own IP address. Picking an IP Address has the potential to cause more harm than good, see Network Addresses and Naming requirements for full information. CORE Resources considers this "stealing of network resources" and will render your network card inoperable on the network. A Security Incident Report will be created and your computer will be found. A decision is then made as to whether your connection can be reactivated or if further action is to be taken against you.

For further assistance:
  • Columbia University staff and faculty should contact the Information Technology group for their department. If you do not have one or if you are unsure if your department has an IT group, contact your business office.
  • If you still have questions or if you are unable to get your computer connected to the network, you can contact the Service Desk at extension 5-Help.

How long does it take to process my registration and connect?

It can take a few business days to process correctly submitted wired network registration. An email confirming that your registration is complete will be sent to the person who submitted the form, and the computer will automatically receive its "IP" address when plugged into the wired campus network. Most computers are able to connect soon after being approved; be sure to carefully review any information you receive regarding registration and approval to avoid possible issues or delay.

Should I request a manual IP address?

We recommend that you do not request a manual IP address (one that has to be manually configured within the computer's network settings). A dynamic (not manual) address is generally much easier to use, and allows for roaming if you have a laptop.

How do we configure our computers?

Once you submit the Online Form for IP registration, you will receive an email that the request has been received. Within a few business days you should then receive an email that the request has been processed and your computer can connect after the specified time listed in the email.

Most computers are already configured to use a protocol called DHCP, which will allow them to automatically connect to the network once the IP request is completed. The email you receive will tell you if you need to set up your computer differently, or you can contact the CUMC IT Service Desk for assistance if your computer does not connect as it should according to the instructions.

Can we use our laptops anywhere?

Registered laptops may be used anywhere on campus and remote sites. If you only have wireless capabilities, your coverage area is much smaller. To find out the current locations of the CUMC Wireless Network, please see the list of wireless availability.

Where do we plug in?

Phone and Data Ports

Network cable data connection outlets should have an identifiable orange label on them. They are usually red or blue in color and look similar to a telephone connection.

Connecting an Ethernet network card to a telephone outlet can cause severe and irreparable damage to the card and/or your computer, please make sure you are putting the ethernet cable into the correct data port. A data port is slightly larger than a telephone port, and most ethernet cables will not easily fit into a telephone outlet.

Who assigns the IP addresses?

The group that manages the network for the entire CUMC and NYP campus, CORE Resources, assigns the IP addresses. Please remember that if you have any issues or questions regarding the campus network you must first contact the CUMC IT Service Desk at extension 5-Help, option 5. All requests for IP addresses must go through the online form.

How can I transfer files over the network?

  • If you have an Exchange email account (ending in, please see this FAQ.
  • If you need to share large files with others in your department there is typically a shared network drive that can be used.
  • If the file does not contain confidential or sensitive information, it is possible to use an online file sharing services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive or Apple's iCloud, however you must be very sure that you are not violating institutional policies or requirements by using one of these services.
IMPORTANT: any files containing sensitive information including PHI, PII, or institutional information cannot be stored (temporarily or permanently) using a vendor that does not have a signed Business Associates Agreement with Columbia. Please contact Information Security if you need to transport PHI, PII (personally identifiable information) or other confidential information.

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Last updated 10/28/2014