updated 09:35 am EDT, Mon July 23, 2007
Duke: Cisco/iPhone issues
The chief information officer for Duke University has issued an explanation of the service outages recently caused by iPhones. According to Tracy Futhey's official statement, the problem was caused by a "Cisco-based network issue" -- Duke is said to use a "very large" Cisco wireless system, one which supports multiple network protocols. But Futhey confirms an Apple statement that the issue has been already been resolved without recurrence, thanks to a fix from Cisco, and advice from Apple.
While Futhey notes that Duke is still trying to "fully characterize" the problem before releasing more information, he claims there is nothing specific about the iPhone that is responsible. Initial reports indicated that the iPhone's Wi-Fi roaming feature was to blame, since it would repeatedly hunt for the MAC addresses of invalid router addresses as it attempted to switch from one hotspot to another. This supposedly flooded Duke's network, and the university originally denied that Cisco had any responsibility for the outages. Both Apple and Cisco are said to be long-term corporate partners with Duke.