OIT News – May 2014

OIT News
Monthly news briefs, information and announcements
Office of Information Technology, NC State University
Issue 79, May 2014
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Follow OIT on Twitter @ncsu_oit
For up-to-the-minute reports on OIT systems, see SysNews
For help with computing problems, contact the NC State Help Desk
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01: University rolls out campus IT Strategic Plan
02: Kaspersky antivirus software now available for personally owned devices
03: Web Registry renewal notifications
04: OIT to phase out Mail Manager personal forwards
05: OIT blocks Windows XP machines access to campus network
06: University IT Accessibility Office announces GAAD Challenge winners
07: Data Center 2 renovation update
08: What’s new in Google Apps?
09: OIT announces its summer lineup of workshops
10: SAR training scheduled for June 3
11: Never, ever share your password

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01: University rolls out campus IT Strategic Plan
NC State adopted its first university-wide IT strategic plan this spring. Partners in Innovation: A Strategic Plan for IT at NC State, 2014-2020 provides a framework for the campus community to achieve the IT environment necessary to help the university achieve its mission.

The plan culminates more than a year of gathering information from a broad cross-section of the university community and development by IT governance groups. This effort was led by a strategic planning process team.

The plan’s eight IT Guiding Principles will help everyone in the IT community operate individually and collectively. Its IT Strategic Goals and Strategies set out six areas to focus IT-related efforts between now and 2020, the same time period as the university’s Strategic Planning. Each goal has at least three strategies, developed as starting points to help achieve the goal.

Implementation of the new IT strategic plan will begin soon. Marc Hoit, vice chancellor for information technology and chief information officer, has appointed Greg Sparks, director of OIT Communication Technologies, to establish a team to champion the next implementation phase.

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02: Kaspersky antivirus software now available for personally owned devices
NC State students and employees can now download Kaspersky, the university’s new antivirus protection, for their personally owned devices. Kaspersky replaces TrendMicro.

A campus version, to be installed only on university-owned devices, is targeted to be available by the end of May, after testing is complete. Until then, be sure to keep using Trend Micro on university-owned devices.

When the campus version is available, OIT will notify all IT staff as usual via SysNews, OIT News and similar media. Please contact your local IT person for more details.

IMPORTANT:

  • Before you install Kaspersky on your devices, you will need to uninstall all other antivirus programs you may have. For instructions, see Uninstalling Trend Micro and other antivirus products.
  • An approved antivirus software is required on any device that connects to the campus network.

For more information, see NC State Antivirus Resources. Questions should be directed to the NC State Help Desk at help@ncsu.edu or 919.515.HELP (4357).

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03: Web Registry renewal notifications
If you’re the contact for a Google group, resource or generic account managed by Web Registry, be sure to check your email Inbox for your annual renewal notification. The renewal deadline is Friday, June 13.

OIT is sending your Web Registry renewal notification with instructions on renewing and/or requesting deletion of your Google group, resource or generic account. Be sure to respond to this request when it arrives, as non-responses are treated as requests to delete. OIT will send several reminder notifications via email to you prior to the June 13 deadline.

This is also a good time for you to log in to Web Registry and make sure all the contacts for your Web Registry items are up-to-date. Remove contacts that are no longer valid and add new ones as necessary.

If you have any questions concerning the renewal notification, please contact the NC State Help Desk at help@ncsu.edu or 919.515.HELP (4357).

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04: OIT to phase out Mail Manager personal forwards
OIT will phase out personal forwards that are created using its Mail Manager (USMDB forwarding) tool. Users may continue to renew and create personal forwards with this tool until June 30, 2014; however, all personal forwards will expire on Dec. 31, 2014.

If you want to forward your Gmail to a personal account, you will need to use Google’s Gmail forwarding tool. OIT recommends that you expire your personal forwards in the Mail Manager tool immediately and begin forwarding via Google. To set up a forward within Gmail, see Google’s procedures: Automatically forward emails to another account.

Note: OIT will email all users that have personal forwards, notifying them about the discontinuation of the service and providing them with instructions for setting up a Gmail forward.

Please keep in mind that if you are leaving the university, the retention of your Gmail/Google account will depend on your affiliation (student, faculty or staff). For more information, see:

OIT to keep certain forwards and aliases
OIT will retain its Mail Manager (USMDB forwarding) tool for the following types of aliases and forwards:

  • Departmental Forward: ced_ipad_setup@ncsu.edu –> ced_support@ncsu.edu
  • Departmental Alias: graduate_secretary@ncsu.edu –> jmcarter@ncsu.edu
  • Hosted Alias: rqu@cropsci.ncsu.edu –> rqu@ncsu.edu
  • Personal Alias: firstname_lastname@ncsu.edu –> unityid@ncsu.edu

For help or questions, please contact the NC State Help Desk: help@ncsu.edu or 919.515.HELP (4357).

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05: OIT blocks Windows XP machines from the campus network
If you’re running Windows XP and your machine is still connected to the NC State network, it will not be for long. As part of its continuing efforts to keep the network secure, OIT is in the process of blocking from the campus network all machines that are still running this unsupported operating system.

As of April 8, 2014, Microsoft ended maintenance support, including security updates and patches, for the Windows XP operating system, leaving it vulnerable to hacks, viruses and malware. This is a very serious issue. If an infection started on your unprotected Windows XP machine, it could quickly and easily spread across the campus network, putting your data and the university’s systems and data at risk of being exploited.

OIT recommends that you upgrade to a modern operating system and buy a new computer if necessary. Windows is site licensed for university-owned machines, and you can obtain media for Windows 7 or 8 from Software @ NC State. Contact your local IT support for assistance with your upgrade.

If an upgrade is not possible and your computer must remain connected to the campus network, you need to contact your Campus IT Director (CITD) Designated Delegate for Windows XP Approval and provide justification for any exception.

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06: University IT Accessibility Office announces GAAD Challenge winners
Campus website owners corrected 905,082 accessibility errors during NC State’s Second Annual Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GADD) Challenge. GADD is held annually to “get people talking, thinking and learning about digital accessibility and users with disabilities.”

Sponsored by the University IT Accessibility Office, the challenge was held during the month leading up to Global Accessibility Awareness Day, which is today (May 15). It featured a grand champion in three categories of sites that had the greatest percentage of accessibility errors corrected, and also featured sites that included the Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA) landmarks of “main” and “navigation” added to at least 80 percent of their pages. Winners included:

  • Large Sites (1000+ pages)
    NCSU Libraries (84 percent of errors corrected)
  • Medium Sites (100-999 pages)
    African American Cultural Center (66 percent of errors corrected)
  • Small Sites (1-99 pages)
    Internal Audit (25 percent of errors corrected)
  • Main Landmark – 21 sites
  • Navigation Landmark – 23 sites

The University IT Accessibility Office determined the top websites and all ratings based solely on automated accessibility tests. For the complete results, visit 2014 Global Accessibility Awareness Day Challenge.

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07: Data Center 2 renovation update
OIT is continuing its efforts to fortify the university’s Data Center 2 (DC2) to sustain future growth as well as minimize future outages.

In April, the DC2 Team replaced the center’s water pumps and began installing chilled water piping to support four new chilled water HVAC units, which will replace the existing air-cooled climate control units. The first of these units will be installed on Wednesday, May 21. Each unit will take approximately four working days to install. Piping work will continue until all HVAC units are installed. There will be no planned shutdown of IT services in DC2 during this project.

The team has already installed two new taps into the building’s chilled water supply system. These were necessary to support a new stand-alone backup chiller to reduce the center’s reliance on a single primary source of cooling.  

This seven-month-long power and cooling renovation will also include the installation of an independent backup generator to reduce the non-data center loads on the existing generator. All work is anticipated to be completed at the end of August.

See SysNews for continuing updates on this project.

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08: What’s new in Google Apps?
As a Google Apps user, you can now install mobile apps for Google Docs and Sheets, shuffle answers in Google Forms, work on Sheets offline, and much more! Check out the Google App’s April newsletter to learn about these and other exciting new features.

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09: OIT announces its summer lineup of workshops
If you’re looking for new experiences this summer, OIT is offering several Google Apps and accessibility workshops:

  • “Gmail: Advanced Tools, Tips & Tricks” will be offered on Thursday, May 29 from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. If you’re comfortable with the basics of Gmail and are ready to take it to the next level, this more advanced hands-on workshop is for you. You will learn more about creating labels, filters and canned responses, scheduling Google Calendar Events, and using Google Drive, along with any planned or newly released Google features. To register, visit Classmate.
     
  • “Interpreting Your Accessibility Scan Report” will be offered on Thursday, May 29 from noon to 1 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. This workshop will teach you how to interpret the results from your accessibility scan. Learn which errors are more critical to deal with and which are not as essential to fix. Also, learn strategies for prioritizing your corrections and techniques for doing so. To register, visit Classmate.
     
  • “Create and Collaborate with Google Drive” will be offered on Tuesday, June 3 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. in ITTC Lab 2 of D.H. Hill Library. In this hands-on workshop, you will learn everything you need to know to get started using Google Docs/Drive at NC State. You will learn how to use Drive in a collaborative environment, including editing a file simultaneously with other people, securing a document through file sharing permissions, and creating files for use by a group of colleagues or friends. For this workshop, you will need to have an active NC State University Unity account with access to Google Apps at NC State. If you would prefer using your own laptop or other mobile device, feel free to bring it. To register, visit Classmate.
     
  • “Google Drive: Forms” will be offered on Wednesday, June 11 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Are you looking for a way to easily create surveys, plan events or gather data? Are you interested in learning more about specific apps available in Google Drive? If so, don’t miss this interactive session on how to create and collaborate using Google Forms. In this workshop, you will learn the basics of creating forms and viewing responses and several advanced features like embedding forms in websites, adding page breaks, and incorporating question validation. If you would prefer to use your own laptop or other mobile device, feel free to bring it. To register, visit Classmate.

For other available training sessions, see Classmate Scheduled Workshops. If you’re interested in custom software training for your department, unit or classroom, please complete the Custom Training form. If you have any questions about OIT training, please contact Katie McInerney, OIT training coordinator, at 513-4091 or via email at classreg@ncsu.edu.

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10: SAR training scheduled for June 3
Security Access Request (SAR) training for campus requestors and approvers of access to secured university data will be held Tuesday, June 3 from 9:30 a.m. to noon in Room 108 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Please visit Classmate to sign up for training.

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11: Never, ever share your password
If you share your Unity password with anyone, not only is it a policy violation, but you also expose yourself and the university to significant risk. Think of your password like your signature. Sharing it with someone is like giving that person authority to sign your name—authority that implies you approve of everything they do in your name. You are the only person responsible for all activities performed with your Unity ID and password.

Never send your password to someone else via email.
If you receive an email from someone claiming to be a university staff member and asking for your password, do not respond. A legitimate NC State administrator or IT support person will NEVER ask for your password.

You can share email or calendar information with someone, such as an administrative assistant, while you’re traveling.
Delegate your email or calendar access. See How can I delegate email or calendar access to another person?

Someone affiliated with NC State is visiting you and needs to log in to a campus computer to perform university-related business.
Request a guest account for him/her via proper channels.  For more details, see Guest Accounts on Computing Account Procedures for Faculty, Staff and Guests.

You have Financials system access and to coordinate Travel Authorizations and Reimbursements for your department, you need to look at a colleague’s travel documents in the Financials system.
Do not ask for his/her password. Instead, learn how to allow proxy access for others in your department. See the NCSU Travel Center User’s Guide, page 7.

To read more about choosing a strong password and keeping it safe, see the following:

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