September 2013 Computing and Technology Update

The semester has started and we have been quite busy in Information and Technology since our last update. This month we have several projects to report on and a few new ones on the horizon. None are as fun as the HuskyFest, Parking Garage Movie Night, or the Taste of Portland but we’re trying.

Novell to Microsoft Migration
This is by far the biggest project on our plate at the moment and it has been progressing well. Most of you migrated over the past month without problem. As expected there were a number who had problems and we believe most of these are cleared up at this point. Our next steps will be the removal of the Novell NetWare client and replacement of Symantec Anti-virus on all workstations. This won’t happen for a few weeks to avoid causing any problems these first weeks of the term. The process will happen at your desk and automatically. We will send out another update before we begin to let you know exactly when it’s happening. Also we will be migrating our “compliant” data storage and printers in the coming weeks and months.

Short Version: Migration is going well so far, next Novell and Symantec get removed, and we begin printer migration.

TechQual+
You saw several messages this summer about our customer satisfaction survey from TechQual+. It is very much like LibQual and takes only a few minutes to complete. We are surveying only 25% of the campus community including faculty, staff, and students. If you get a survey invitation please take the time to answer the questions. As a forewarning, the invitations will be from the TechQual+ site and have my name (and email) as the from address which makes them look a little like SPAM.

Short Version: Technology TechQual+ survey invitations may look like spam; they are not. Please participate!

Web CMS and MyUSM Portal
We continue to work on the upgrade from Drupal version 6 to version 7. We are beginning testing by technology staff and web publishers. The results of this feature and load testing will dictate our actual upgrade date. Currently we are planning for sometime in October based in this testing. Web publishers and technical liaisons will be getting more information through their channels as we get closer.

Short Version: Drupal version 7 upgrade will be in October based on testing with web publishers.

Windows Updates
With the transition to Microsoft services you will have less work to do with the never-ending stream of Windows Updates. The Microsoft “system center” allows us to pre-verify patches and updates, then send them to your workstation behind the scenes. This will eliminate the need for you to manually apply them. You will be able to delay some non-critical updates but there are also deadlines attached to the more critical ones to ensure you are well protected and secured.

Short Version: Windows Updates will be pushed to your workstation — you will not have to apply them yourself.

LearnIT Training
The first LearnIT training day for the academic year is planned for September 25th. We are continuing to collect training topics from you and work them into the schedule. You will get updated information about the schedule and locations as the details get fleshed out.

Short Version: LearnIT training on September 25th, 2013

Thank you for reading and helping us with these projects. If you have problems the Helpdesk is available to take your calls (780-4029), your email (helpdesk@usm.maine.edu), or you in-person (144 Luther Bonney Hall).

Stephen Houser
Executive Director of Information and Technology

This entry was posted on Thursday, September 5th, 2013 at 2:48 pm and is filed under news, printing, security, web, webcms. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

 

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