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Old 09-15-2018, 12:56 PM   #1
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Connecting to Wi-Fi when abroad

I've made this topic title a little vague, as I want to document my current experiences connecting to wifi in Turkey, but it may apply to other countries too. Now, connecting with my netbook to wifi in the UK has never been a problem. However, I come to Turkey quite often and I only have a problem here. I didn't understand what the issues were until today.

For instance, a few months ago I went to a hotel and I couldn't connect in spite of having the username and password for the hotel. I went to reception and they couldn't help. They called the IT guy there and I told him I was using Linux. "Ah, Linux", he said, as if to say, "I know what the problem is". He whitelisted my mac address at this hotel and I thought little else of it.

Until now. I went to another hotel today and I still couldn't connect in spite of having the username and password. After about an hour the IT guy came and understood that the issue was because I was using Linux. He gave me the password for his phone and I connected through that.

He told me that the issue was that Linux attempts to correct 'more directly' than Windows or Mac. In this country, certain aspects of personal data are required to make a wifi connection, e.g. name, passport number, national IDs, addresses etc. However, because Linux computers don't necessarily hold this information, the firewall for many hotels will block them. This generally means that you will be able to connect to private wifi but public, no, you'll have issues. This is a rule which, I think, is law - there is a name for it but I can't find it at present, if I do find it I'll post it back here.

Doing some minor research I've found that Russia is another country which requires personal information in order to permit a connection. So for those people in some countries who can't connect, this would go some way to explaning why you may not be able to and would hopefully go some way towards offering a solution.
Old 09-15-2018, 04:15 PM   #2
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You picked two countries where people are scrutinized more closely. The local linux heads will have a way around it, I'm sure.

China is another place with issues (Big Brother is censoring you). There, I believe you can connect but content & access is controlled.
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