Bringing Your Own Laptop

(Frequently Asked Questions)

What is wireless Internet access?
Wireless Internet access provides access to the Internet throughout the library from an enabled device such as a laptop computer, game console, mobile phone, MP3 player or PDA without plugging into a wall outlet or a floor box.

What is the wireless connection speed at TCPL?
Wireless connect speed is 2 mbps in each direction. Response time depends upon the size of the web page or file, the speed of the website's Internet connection and the number of other wireless users transmitting data at the same time.

Who can use wireless Internet access? Do I need a library card?
Adults and children who comply with the Library's Internet Access Services Rules and Internet Usage Policy. A Tompkins County Public Library card is required. Information about obtaining a TCPL Library card is available at

Does the Library provide laptops or other equipment?
No, you must bring your own.

Where can I get help setting up my laptop for wireless Internet access?

You are responsible for setting up your own equipment. If you are not familiar with computers or networking, we recommend bringing someone with you who can help configure your laptop. View set-up directions at

Can I print from my laptop?
Printing is not directly accessible via the wireless network.

How can I tell whether the wireless network is working?
If your laptop has been properly configured, it should sense the wireless network as soon as it is turned on. If there is no response in two or three minutes, "reboot" and try again.

How long does my wireless connection last?
There is no time limit.

Why are some Internet services unavailable?

Internet services, such as FTP, ICMP, Peer-to-Peer and Telnet that may compromise the system security or stability, are limited or not allowed.

Is the information on my laptop safe from hackers while I am connected?

The Library's wireless network is not secure. We recommend that you utilize virus protection, personal firewall, and other protective measures. The library is not responsible for any loss of information or damage to your equipment that might result from using the wireless network.

Page last modified Dec 17, 2013