I am currently staying in a hotel with a free Wi-fi network. It doesn't require a password to log in to the network. When you first start up your web browser you are presented with a portal page , and once you click 'free connection', you're online.
A couple of days ago I downloaded a large file via Bittorrent, overnight, and in the morning I found I no longer had an internet connection, even though I'm still connected to the network. I have not had an internet connection since. The hotel tell me they aren't aware of any problems.
Is it possible that I have been barred from the network by a hotel tech guy, or an automated process? And is there a way to get back online, ie. 'fool' the network into thinking I am a different user?
My guess is that none of the hotel employees will have a clue either, because the Wi-Fi service has been contracted out to some firm that has blacklisted the OP's wireless MAC address for an AUP violation or for exceeding some unstated limit on the amount of use. The exclusion may have been triggered because the BitTorrent application's constant uploading was detected as running a server.
Just because the front desk "isn't aware of any problems" doesn't mean there isn't one. A couple of years back I stayed at a hotel with wireless and when I checked into my room all was well. I went to supper and came back and the connection was passing no data. This state continued through the next day and night as well. A bit of sniffing with Ethereal revealed everyone having the same problem--getting a DHCP address and no connection outside of the network. I found out the next morning that "someone" had unplugged the outbound router. D'oh!
If your MAC has been blacklisted, perhaps you can assign a different one to your interface. You can create a custom one starting with 02 if you'd like.
That's great for my business. Adding QoS and security to wireless networks run by a hotel, motel, restraunt, coffee shop, or bar, are a part of my business. Abuse by users such as yourself are a good inspiration, although abuse by the neighbors is more common.
Oh well. It appears the hotel is on top of things and has some traffic monitoring in place. They probably detected the amount and/or nature of your traffic and blocked your MAC address from their system. My guess(tm) is that the hotel is sharing a DSL line among all the free users. Your overnight download probably saturated their bandwidth for the entire evening. Since you left it unattended, you were probably also acting as a Bitorrent server thus also saturating their outgoing bandwidth until morning. It's a little like taking over their entire parking lot all night. It probably doesn't hurt them much, and only affect a few users of the parking lot after midnight. Still, it's generally considered a bad idea. Anyway, you probably don't need this lecture and know exactly what Bitorrent can do to a bandwidth limited network, as you were swift enough to monopolize all their bandwidth only late at night.
Yes. That's probably what happened. If the hotel has a clue or has contracted out the wireless service to some organization with a clue, that's exactly what has happened. It's often difficult to find an AUP (acceptable use policy) at hotels and such, but these are often provided by the service companies. Usually any bandwidth hogging services and all servers are usually proscribed.
I'll pass. See if you can find someone in the hotel with a clue and beg them for forgiveness. Personally, I'm not sympathetic.
Per information I've read, MAC addresses beginning with 00 are assigned to device manufacturers while those beginning with 02 are "locally administered". Be aware that it's possible to still retrieve the underlying hardware address even after you've assigned another. I've seen Kismet do this when monitoring locally administered MAC addresses.
You could always try another adapter (Cardbus, for example) or computer. ;-)