2015 Summer Computer Upgrades
Posted by Patricia Goodman on 14 April 2015 04:07 PM
This summer the ITS department will be upgrading desktop computers that run the Windows operating system in offices and labs across campus. The upgrades will occur by department and will begin on June 1st. This year's upgrade will introduce a new concept: Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). Virtual computers will operate just like your current computer. but with several advantages:
This new paradigm advances strategic efforts to make the campus more mobile, control costs and make technology services and data ubiquitous.
Overview of important information in this communication that pertains to you
There is a lot of information in this communication that you will need to be aware of, and important action items with concrete deadlines that you will need to take in order to be prepared. All of this is outlined below. It is very important that you take the time to read this entire communication so that you are fully informed and prepared.
What is VDI?
VDI is defined as virtual desktop infrastructure. VDI converts your existing computer into a client that connects to a virtual computer that is running on a secure remote server.
What are the benefits of VDI?
What can I expect by using VDI?
Employees using GC issued Mac OS desktops, or GC issued laptops running Windows or Mac OS will have a way to connect to a virtual Windows computer if they need to off-campus access any Windows software or GCFile.
Employees will be able to connect their personal computers to a virtual Windows computer to have off-campus access to GC software and GCFile. iPads, iPhones, and Android devices will also be able to connect.
What do I need to do to prepare?
You will need to make sure that you have copies of any files that you may have saved to the hard drive (the C: drive) of your computer. This is because when we upgrade your computer to a virtual computer, we will only be copying over to your virtual computer application specific files, such as your web browser bookmarks. Any other files that youwould have saved to your computer's hard drive will not be kept and will be permanently deleted. Make sure you make copies of these files before the date that your computer is scheduled to be upgraded. Please note that files that you have on GCFile (the M: drive) WILL NOT be affected. If you're unsure of the difference between the computer's hard drive and the M: drive, below is a picture to help clarify:
If you still are unsure, contact the Help Desk at (574) 535-7700.
What are the files and data that are on my existing Windows computer that will not be copied onto my virtual computer?
Currently we are only able to grant each user a limited space allotment of 10 GB on their virtual computer. Because of this, there are certain files that will not be copied over from your existing computer to your virtual computer. AND, these files will be permanently deleted from your existing computer's hard drive once we switch your computer over to virtual. As you check your computer's hard drive for files that you may have saved to it, below are some areas where you should look. Please be sure to check these areas, and if you find any files, please copy them to either GCFile (the M: drive), or to your GC Google Drive, or burn them to CD or DVD. Please only put files related to GC business on GCFile or Google Drive.
Potential locations where you may have saved files to the hard drive are:
What are the files and data that are on my existing Windows computer's hard drive that will be copied onto my virtual computer?
What is the deadline that I have to deal with the files that will not be copied onto my virtual computer?
The VDI project will consume much of the summer, and we are still in the planing phase of when each employee's computer will be switched over. We will begin our work on June 1st, therefore we are requiring that you make a backup of the files that will not be copied over no later than May 31st.
Of the files that will not be copied to my virtual computer, will I be able to put them on my virtual computer once it is switched to virtual?
This will be at your discretion, but remember that you will only have a space allotment of 10 GB in your virtual computer for such files.
What do I need to do to prepare?
When will the switchover occur?
To see a schedule of when your computer will be switched to a virtual computer, click the following link. Computers are listed in alphabetical order by computer name. If you don't see your computer's name in the list, please contact the Help Desk at 574-535-7700. https://docs.google.com/a/goshen.edu/spreadsheets/d/1_n3l0-x15NEzhAV1NRCQhzJsCztKaUPIbNke1HwR53Y/edit?usp=sharing
What if I'm not on campus during the switchover?
The switch will take place regardless of whether or not you are on campus this summer. When you return there will be instructions on your desk on how to log in to your computer. Make sure you take care of the above mentioned files that will not be copied over BEFORE you leave campus, and no later than May 31st.
What if I'm not on campus during May term and and cannot make a backup of the files that I saved to my hard drive?
If you are off campus during May term and are unable to make a backup of the files that you have saved to your office Windows computer hard drive, please contact the Help Desk right away so we can assist you with a solution. Phone us at 574-535-7700.
What if I use special software for my work at GC?
If your department has installed special software to enable you and your co-workers to perform functions and business processes for your work at GC, someone from your department will need to send us a list of those software applications, the names of which employees in your department use it, and also provide us with the installation files, and serial numbers or activation codes so that we can install that software onto your virtual computer. Any other software, gadgets, utilities, drivers, etc. that you have installed that are not required for the work that you do at GC will not be re-installed onto your virtual computer by ITS. If you are the only user of that special software, you may be asked to install the software yourself once you receive your virtual computer.
What else do I need to know about the changes that will take affect on my computer once it is switched to a virtual computer?
What computers will not be switched to VDI?
We have identified specific computers that will not be switched to VDI due to the nature of the use of the computer, or the operating system that is installed. They are as follows:
I'm using a GC provided laptop. What can I expect?
Those who are using GC provided laptops that run either Windows or Mac operating system will not have the laptop switched to virtul, but instead will have a VMWare Horizon Client installed to allow connection to a virtual Windows computer for purposes of accessing GCFile while off-campus, as well as Windows software and Jenzabar EX.
When your time to have your computer switched to virtual arrives, here is what you can expect. A member of the ITS staff will come to your office and give you a temporary computer so your work will not be impeded by this process. The temporary computer you will receive will have GC institutional software installed on it. Note: If you're using the Google Chrome browser and have established syncing of your bookmarks through Chrome Sync, you will be able to log into your Chrome Sync account on your temporary computer so that you can still have access your Chrome bookmarks. We will bring your Windows desktop computer back to ITS where we will access the hard drive and copy onto your virtual computer the files and data that are in the above list of files and data that will be copied. Once the copy process has completed, we will return your virtual computer to you, instruct you on how to log onto your virtual computer, answer any questions you may have, and leave you with a set of printed instructions. We will also take away the temporary computer that we gave you. If you use a GC laptop running Windows, we can either install the VMWare Horizon Client for you or give you instructions to install it yourself. If you use a GC laptop or Desktop running Mac OS, the VMWare Horizon Client will be installed automatically from the Managed Software Center.
Training and support
When we give your your virtual computer, an ITS staff member will walk you through the process of how to log log onto your computer, answer any questions you may have, and give you a set of printed instructions. And, of course you can also contact the Help Desk at ext. 7700 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for ongoing support and questions.
We fully recognize that virtual computing is a new technology for most of you, and it may seem a little confusing at first. If you would like to experience what it is like to use a virtual computer before your computer is switched, feel free to come to ITS (basement of the Union building) during the month of May and try it out on one of the computers in the UN 002 computer lab.
Below some of the common questions that have been asked regarding this project, and their answers. Please read the following, and if you still need further clarification, contact the Help Desk as soon as possible at (574) 535-7700.
Question: Will you be switching my home/personal computer to a virtual computer?
Answer: No. This is for only a particular set of Goshen College owned computers.
Answer: No. The brand of computer hardware that you have does not determine whether or not your computer will be switched. What determines whether or not your computer is switched is the operating system that your computer runs. Only desktop computers that are running the Windows operating system will be switched to a virtual computer.
Answer: No. Just because the hardware is branded as an Apple product (a Mac) does not mean it is running the Mac operating system. It could be running Windows.
Question: How do I tell if my desktop computer is running the Windows or Mac operating system?
Answer: Look at the bottom left corner of your computer screen. If you see a Start button, your computer is running Windows and it will be switched to a virtual computer.
Answer: No. ALL GC issued laptops, whether they run the Windows or the Mac operating system WILL NOT be switched to a virtual computer.
Question: Do I need to do anything to prepare?
Answer: Yes. You WILL need to check your computer for any files that you may have saved to the hard drive and move them to GCFile (the M: drive), Google Drive, or portable media. Certainly, if the files you saved on the hard drive or desktop are for Goshen College business, you should place them in GCFile or Google Drive. Please don't place personal files, pictures, or music at these locations. Use portable media for your personal files.
Answer: The deadline is May 31st.
Question:How do I know where to look on my desktop windows computer for files that I may have saved to the hard drive that I now need to move off?
Answer: No. The only files you need to be concerned about are those you have saved to the hard drive (C: Drive) or the desktop of your Windows computer.
Although Google guarantees compliance with HIPAA and FERPA governance, we have put together a policy to help you understand the type of information that is considered confidential or restricted and should not be placed in Google Drive, but instead remain on GCFile; as well as the type of information that is considered public and can be placed in Google Drive. You will find this policy at https://sites.google.com/a/goshen.edu/its-department-policies/home/data-security-policy
Question: I have music on my GC Windows desktop computer that I play with iTunes or some other media player. What will happen to that music?
Answer: When we switch your computer to a virtual computer, you will have a space limit of 10 GB for storing files, which include music files, whether they are for iTunes or some other music player. You can have your music files on your virtual computer, but you will be limited to only 10 GB of total space on that computer for storing files. You will need to make a backup of your music files so that you can later copy them to your virtual computer. ITS will not copy your music files to your virtual computer for you. Obviously, any files that you use for Goshen College business should be stored in either GCFile or Google Drive.
Answer: Your work computer is property of Goshen College and is to be used for work-related purposes. It is not intended for your personal use. If you have personal files, pictures, or music stored on your Goshen College computer, you will need to move them to some form of portable media, such as an external hard drive, flash drive, or CD/DVD. If you're looking for a recommendation of an external hard drive, ITS recommends the following: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822236519
Answer: Contact the Help Desk at 574-535-7700.
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Zimbra migration to Gmail and Calendar
Posted by Patricia Goodman on 25 July 2014 09:33 AM
Goshen College is changing their mail and calendar system from Zimbra to Gmail and Google Calendar.
The switchover date is July 28. At 7 a.m. on Monday, July 28 we will throw the switch and Zimbra will no longer be available and you will begin using your GC Gmail and Google Calendar. On July 28th you will be able to access your GC Gmail and Google calendar by going to http://www.google.com See below for more details on how to log in. Note: Users with a lot of email may see older email slowly appearing over the course of a week following the switch over date. And, because the daily synchronization process for new email is time-consuming for our nearly 2,000 accounts, any email that comes in between Sunday, July 27 and 7 a.m. Monday, July 28 may take up to a day to appear in your new GMail account.
Next Steps for employees: Gmail and Calendar training
The Help Desk will be offering in depth GMail and Calendar training July 21, 23, 25, and August 11 and 20. Prior to these training sessions, we are asking that everyone begin learning GMail and Google Calendar now by taking a short online training course and quiz. The course contains a series of training videos for you to watch. Upon completion of watching the videos, there will be a short quiz at the bottom of the course that you will need to take. Upon successfully passing the quiz (which you can repeat until getting at least 80% correct), you will be given a link to a Google spreadsheet where you can sign up for one of eight in depth training sessions that will be offered. You can access this Moodle course now by logging in at https://moodle.goshen.edu and then clicking on the “Google Mail/Calendar Training” course.
Migration details you should know
Logging into your Goshen Google account
On July 28th you will be able to access your GC Gmail and Google calendar by going to http://www.google.com (You can also get to this login page by using the "Google Apps at GC" link on the MyGC page.)
*Note that if you have a personal Gmail account (or a Google account through your Internet service provider), you will need to sign out of that Google account before signing in to your GC account. For more information on how to do this, click here to see the support article.
Google Drive: You already have it!
Later in the year we will be migrating from GCFile to Google Drive. However, you can begin using Google Drive now to "test the waters" and get familiar with its features, even before we migrate! We only ask that you not import any files from GCFile to your Google Drive account because later in the year when we migrate everyone's files from GCFile to Google you would end up with duplicate files. But, you can create new files, and also share them with others who need to work collaboratively with you.
Additional Training Resources
There are a number of ways to learn more about Google Apps.
A special note about Google Apps vs. Microsoft apps. We will not be abandoning our Microsoft apps. You can continue to use the Microsoft products that are installed on an office computer or lab computer. In the employee training sessions we will address Microsoft applications vs. Google apps, and talk about best practices for saving and editing Microsoft files in your Google Drive.
If you have any questions, please direct all inquires to the Help Desk by:
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GC ends support of Windows XP and MS Office 2003
Posted by Pamela Kistler-Osborne on 10 July 2014 11:46 AM
Windows XP Retirement
Goshen College requires that any computing device connecting to its network be up-to-date with security patches. On April 8, 2014, Microsoft discontinued support for Windows XP. As XP falls out-of-date, it will no longer meet security requirements and will cease to function properly. Over time, the security and performance of a PC using Win XP will continue to degrade. Please note that as of July 1 2014, ITS is no longer supporing Win XP computers on its network.
Please note that we are also no longer supporting MS Office 2003.
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PDF attachment icon not visible when viewing email on iPad
Posted by Patricia Goodman on 25 March 2014 03:00 PM
With the lates iOS update for iPads came a change in how PDF attachments are handled in the Mail application. If you receive a PDF attachment that is a 1 page PDF, you will no longer have an attachment icon in the body of the email to select. Instead you will see an image of the PDF's contents present in the body of the email message. If you want to perform a Quick View of that PDF, or view it in another app such as GoodReader, you will need to tap and hold on that image to get the app picker to appear, and then choose the app that you wish to view it with. Multi-page PDFs still come through as an attachment icon in the email message that you can tap to view, or tap and hold to get the app picker. This issue doesn't seem to affect iPhones.
If you have any questions about this, contact the Help Desk at 574-535-7700 or send an email to email@example.com
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Google Apps for Education at GC
Posted by Patricia Goodman on 20 November 2013 02:01 PM
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