Connecting to UAlberta's UWS on NixOS

Posted on January 10, 2019

The University of Alberta’s campus wifi netowrk, UWS, uses WPA2-Enterprise with PEAP. The usual choices for managing wifi connections on NixOS, wicd and NetworkManager, both have poor to non-existent support for such a network out of the box. So to connect we need to configure wpa_supplicant manually. As root add the following to /etc/wpa_supplicant.conf (creating it if necessary):

Then use one of the various wpa tools (wpa_gui is pretty user friendly) to connect.

It is unfortunate to store credentials in plain text; see the discussion here on StackExchange here for instructions on storing the hash instead. In any case you should ensure no one unauthorized is able to read your wpa_supplicant.conf, and to not use reuse wifi passwords for more important secrets if you can avoid it.