OIT News – February 2009

OIT News
Monthly news briefs, information and announcements
Office of Information Technology, NC State University
Issue 16, February 2009
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For the up-to-the minute reports on OIT systems, see SysNews:
http://sysnews.ncsu.edu
For help with computing problems, contact the NC State University Help Desk:
http://help.ncsu.edu

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01: WolfWise Team to hold technical forum for campus IT staff
02: Student Email Task Force seeks feedback on Google and Microsoft email services
03: Student Records migration completed successfully
04: Beware of virus-loaded e-greetings!
05: OIT implements new virtual private network (VPN)
06: New Adobe workshop series offered
07: SAR training scheduled for Feb. 17
08: Upcoming OIT Brown Bag Lunch and Learn sessions: “Practical Encryption” and “Twitter”
09: All invited to Gertrude Cox Award Ceremony on Feb. 23
10: Symantec Antivirus expires in June: Download new antivirus now

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01: WolfWise Team to hold technical forum for campus IT staff
The WolfWise implementation team has scheduled a technical forum for campus IT staff to discuss and answer questions about the Oracle calendar migration to the new WolfWise system. The forum will be held from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 18 in 107 Harrelson Hall. WolfWise is NC State’s implementation of Novell GroupWise for its single centrally supported calendaring and email solution for faculty and staff.

If you have any questions or feedback, please send them to the WolfWise implementation team via the feedback form on the WolfWise Web site (no longer available).
02: Student Email Task Force seeks feedback on Google and Microsoft email services
The Student Email Task Force is seeking feedback on ways to support current and future student email and related needs. The task force is currently comparing the Unity email service with two hosted service options-Google Apps Education Edition and Microsoft’s Live@edu/Exchange Labs.

Students especially are encouraged to check out what the two hosted options have to offer at a demonstration from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 16 at Carmichael Recreation Center’s Play Zone. Bring your laptop computers. Light refreshments will be served.

A limited number of test accounts are available for these services. If you are a current student or IT support staff and have the interest and time to test these services and to provide feedback, visit the Student Email Initiative Web site and sign up for an account.

If you are unable to attend the demonstration, please leave your feedback on the Web site.

03: Student Records migration completed successfully
On Feb. 9, after three years of planning, the involvement of many campus groups, and the migration of approximately eight million student-related records from the old mainframe system, Registration and Records and OIT announced the successful completion of the “major upgrade” of the university’s student information system. Students, faculty, and staff who work with student records will notice differences in the way student data is now delivered through the MyPack Portal. Congratulations to the entire SIS team for reaching this important milestone. As CIO Marc Hoit noted on Twitter: “SIS Records – 8M records moved from legacy – 825K enrollment records – only 22 errored out! – 30K transcripts – OUTSTANDING execution.” Links to training and online tutorials are available under Faculty Services, Admin Services, and Student Self Service in the MyPack Portal, as well as the SIS Web site. Issues can be reported to the NC State Help Desk at 515-4357.

04: Beware of virus-loaded e-greetings!
As Valentine’s Day approaches, OIT-Security and Compliance warns campus computer users to be watchful of emails posing as e-greetings cards. Although the fake emails are very convincing copies of legitimate e-greeting cards, these counterfeits really contain links to fake e-card Web sites with automatically downloadable viruses. Subject lines such as “from a secret admirer” are common. Be very careful of any e-cards that you were not expecting or that come from an email address that you do not recognize.

If you click the links in the fake e-card email, your computer will download a Trojan virus that if opened will allow virus authors to take over your computer without your knowledge and then use your internet connection to attack other computers, host fake Web sites, distribute further copies of the virus, or commit other illegal acts. The email will entice you to open the download in order to see the e-card.

If you have any questions or think that your computer has become infected by a fake e-card, please contact the NC State Help Desk at 515-4357.
05: OIT implements new virtual private network (VPN)
To allow all NC State students, faculty and staff secure remote access to university data and resources, OIT-ComTech has implemented a new secure virtual private network (SSL VPN). The SSL VPN will replace the Cisco IPsec client. The software is available free of charge.

The SSL VPN client offers more benefits than the university’s former VPN solution. The SSL VPN uses the same ports and protocol as standard HTTPS web access, offers smaller download and automatic configuration and installation for many clients, and is available on the following operating systems: Microsoft Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000, Linux, and Macintosh OS X.

To access secure campus resources by means of the VPN service, users must install the VPN client software on their off-campus computer. The VPN client requires a Unity username and password to verify the user’s identity. Once the user’s identity has been verified, the program connects the user’s computer to the NC State network. The university’s Computer Use Regulations apply to the VPN.

Current Cisco IPsec users and those interested in learning more about this service should visit the VPN Web site. For desktop or installation support, contact the NC State Help Desk at 515-4357 or your LAN administrator.

06: New Adobe workshop series offered
The OIT introduces a new Adobe Series as part of its spring workshops. Registration for all spring OIT workshops is currently open.

The new Adobe Series will include workshops about collages and photography, greeting cards, advertisements, and brochures. Attendees will learn a variety of skills for multiple Adobe applications during each workshop and will also complete a specific project from start to finish.

All workshops are free, and space is limited. For workshop descriptions and to register, visit ClassMate.

07: SAR training scheduled for Feb. 17
Security Access Request (SAR) training for campus requestors and approvers is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 17 in Room 312 of the Hillsborough Building. Please visit the Training Web site to view available classes and to sign up for training.

08: Upcoming OIT Brown Bag Lunch and Learn sessions: “Practical Encryption” and “Twitter”
The OIT invites the campus community to attend two upcoming Brown Bag Lunch and Learn sessions.

“Practical Encryption” will be offered from 12:15 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 17 in 216 Scott Hall. Tim Gurganus of OIT Security and Compliance will demonstrate encryption applications like TrueCrypt, Gnu4Win, McAfee Endpoint Encryption, OpenPGP, FileVault, BitLocker, and Microsoft EFS to show practical ways to protect data from theft, accidental loss, and eavesdropping. You’ll learn specifically how to work with encryption keys and passwords; encrypt data on your laptop, hard drive, CD, DVD, USB drive, email, IM conversations, iPhone, Smartphone, and Blackberry; backup and restore encrypted data; and will learn how to securely delete files so data can’t be recovered. To register, visit ClassMate.

“Twitter: Basic Use and Professional Use” will be offered from 12:15 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 25 in 216 Scott Hall. Twitter is a free social networking blogging service that allows users to send “tweets” or brief updates to each other. John Martin of OIT Information and News Services will show how to sign up for Twitter, what “Following” and “Followers” are all about, how to direct tweets, and how to send private tweets.

You’ll also take a quick look at a few Twitter tools such as TweetGrid, TweetDeck, and Digsby. And finally, you’ll look at ways Twitter is being used in the business world, including a look at how some OIT staff are using it. Bring your own laptop or Internet-accessible PDA to sign up and/or become Followers of each other on the spot. To register, visit ClassMate.

09: All invited to Gertrude Cox Award Ceremony on Feb. 23
Celebrate the creativity and dedication of NC State faculty and staff at the Eighth Annual Gertrude Cox Award ceremony! The ceremony will be held from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 23 in the Walnut Room of the Talley Student Center. The Gertrude Cox Award recognizes “the creative pedagogy of NC State’s faculty and technical staff and their work in integrating new technologies into effective teaching strategies.” The award is sponsored by the Teaching, Learning and Technology Roundtable; Distance Education and Learning Technology Applications (DELTA); and the Office of Faculty Development. Refreshments will be served. For more information, visit the Gertrude Cox Web site.

10: Symantec Antivirus expires in June: Download new antivirus now
NC State’s new antivirus products – Trend Micro OfficeScan 8 for Microsoft Windows and Intego VirusBarrier X5 for Mac OS X – are now available for download. All faculty, staff, and students accessing campus systems are encouraged to upgrade immediately to take advantage of the superior protection offered by these new antivirus products. Each computer connected to the campus network must have a university-approved antivirus program installed and kept up-to-date. Support for all Symantec antivirus products provided by NC State will end on June 22, 2009. For everything you need to make this switch, including FAQs and download instructions, visit the 
NC State Antivirus Resources Web site.

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For help with computing at NC State, contact the NC State Help Desk:
help@ncsu.edu, phone 515-HELP (4357), or visit Room 101, West Dunn Building.

Send your comments or suggestions about OIT News to Rhonda Greene, OIT Information and News Services, at rhonda_greene@ncsu.edu.