Dow Jones, some colleges have banned the iPad from their networks. Princeton and Cornell, for example, are seeing major networking and connectivity issues that mirror the problems many users are seeing with their iPads at home. Princeton also decided to share details about the issues it is seeing on its network in a detailed statement that could help Apple diagnose and fix the connectivity issues that have plagued the iPad since launch.According to
As we reported earlier this month, quite a few iPad owners have experienced WiFi connectivity issues with their devices. There seems to be a wide variety of issues, ranging from bad WiFi reception to regular drops on the WiFi connection because of what looks to be a bug in how the iPad connects to some routers.
The iPad's Problem According to Princetion: DHCP
According to the report from Princeton, at least one of these connectivity problems can be traced back to how the iPad handles DHCP leases. DHCP, which stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, is responsible for assigning IP addresses to computers on a local network. Normally, these IP addresses are renewed at regular intervals. If the device doesn't request a renewal of the address, the DHCP server can hand this address out to another device.
The Princeton team found that, under certain circumstances, iPads renew their lease of a given IP address once but then allow the lease to expire. Once the lease has expired, however, these devices still try to use the same address without asking for a new lease, which is bound to fail, as the router doesn't remember the device anymore and has probably assigned the IP address to another device already.
You can find more details about Princeton's diagnosis - as well as a step-by-step guide for reproducing this issue here.
Is This Good News for iPad Owners?
If this is indeed the source of most iPad connectivity issues, then this is good news for Apple and iPad owners who are currently experiencing these issues, as a straightforward software update can probably remedy this problem.