Welcome students!

August 29th, 2014 by michael_jessen

From Emerson IT, welcome! Or if you’re a returning student, welcome back!

As you get settled on campus, you may have questions about how to connect to our services, and we want to make sure you know how to get in touch with us.

Call us, email us, tweet us – we’re always here to help!

You can also use our IT Help Center at it.emerson.edu/help, which allows you to submit a trouble ticket without calling the Help Desk, or send us comments or other questions.

Connecting to ECwireless?

3 Easy Steps:

  1. Select ECwireless from your list of available wireless networks
  2. Enter your Emerson username and password to authenticate
  3. Accept and trust the certificate if you are presented with one

 

 

Online Help Guides

We have a long list of Guides available on our website at it.emerson.edu to help you every day!

 

Computer Labs

At it.emerson.edu/labs, you can find a list of all of Emerson IT’s computer labs as well as:

 

New Student Technology Guide

Make sure to check out the New Student Technology Guide!

It’s got tons of useful information and best practices.

What’s New this semester?

 

Emerson’s entire email system has been upgraded, and one of its best features is an all new and enhanced ECmail Webapp, at ecmail.emerson.edu.

You can access all of your email here as well as your calendar, and it replicates features of most regular email clients. In fact, many people use the Webapp exclusively to access their ECmail!

What do you do when you forget your password? You need to get an authorization code to reset it on your own.

Now, in addition to receiving on at your email address outside of Emerson, you can also get one by text message!

ECwireless, in addition to a 5GHz makeover across campus, received some major upgrades in the Little Building this summer, so look for better coverage and better reliability!

If you have any comments or questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Mailbox migrations are complete!

August 28th, 2014 by michael_jessen

Emerson IT has worked over the recent months to migrate mailboxes to our new mail system, Exchange 2013. We’re pleased to report that as of last week all staff, faculty, and students have been successfully upgraded! Our software and hardware upgrades have resulted in improved Outlook performance and new Webapp availability to all community members.

We thank everyone for working with us during this process! If you would like to learn more about the new web app, check out our guide.

Upcoming Changes to Median

August 25th, 2014 by Cyle Gage

I’m very excited to announce that there’s a new version of Median coming out next week on Monday, September 1st. The two primary updates are a refreshed interface along with a more versatile backend. The functionality of the site will remain mostly identical, it’ll just look a little cleaner. In addition, I’ve created a brand new custom video player to further accommodate the use of subtitles by online courses.

Median 6 Player

Last year Median crashed a few times due to heavy load, especially during the EVVYs submission week. It has been my goal with this new version of Median to improve stability by separating out the different mechanisms behind Median’s operations. For example, the files themselves that make up Median entries are now stored independently of the upload processes, the streaming processes, and the website itself.

Median 6

This means one piece can fail — such as uploading — without bringing all of Median down with it. Furthermore, additional servers can be “spun up” on demand to accommodate periods of high use to make sure that everyone can upload to Median without worrying about it crashing.

I’ll be continuing to improve median over the course of the year based on feedback from staff, faculty, and students. Please do not hesitate to use our online Help Center to send in feedback of your own if there are features you’d like to see! Thanks for using Median and making it such a unique Emerson experience.

IT at Open Campus Day

August 21st, 2014 by Francis Frain

Human Resources hosted Emerson’s first Open Campus Day, in which departments hosted activities and tours through their spaces. IT invited the campus to visit its offices in the Ansin Building, including Networking and Telecommunications, Enterprise Systems, and the newly renovated space for Media Services. Visitors were introduced to the new phone system, our large format org chart, new HD projectors and panels, and tours of the IT Data Center.

Check out the video here!

Changes to the Password Reset Procedure

August 12th, 2014 by Francis Frain

Emerson IT is excited to announce that we have improved the online Emerson password reset procedure for forgotten passwords. We have added the ability to receive a reset authorization code via text message, and have also added security questions to help verify your identity.

sms_authcode

Please visit myaccount.emerson.edu and ensure that your information is up-to-date.

It is vital that you ensure that your external contact information and security questions are kept up-to-date. For your security, you will need to verify your identity or we will not be able to reset your password. Resets over the phone, email, or fax will no longer take place.

For your convenience, you can still come to the IT Help Desk to reset your password in person. You must present your Emerson ID (or other valid form of photo identification).

As always, please feel free to contact the Help Desk with any questions or concerns by phone at 617-824-8080 or online at it.emerson.edu/help.

The IT Project Center

July 28th, 2014 by Cyle Gage

We’re very excited to announce a new feature of the IT Website: the Project Center. The Project Center is based on our weekly Change Management process, during which we discuss ongoing IT projects and review new project proposals. Integrated into the Project Center is our Project Request form, which allows anyone with an Emerson account to propose new IT-related projects.

Our hope is that the Project Center will help other areas of the college align their initiatives with IT projects, and generally be aware of what we’re up to. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to send us feedback.

Windows Encryption Update

July 24th, 2014 by carlin_corrigan

bitlockerLast month, we were faced with a challenge when our Windows encryption solution, TrueCrypt, discontinued its development.

After further discussion and research, IT has decided to use BitLocker for all Windows disk encryption. We have updated documentation on the IT website. We will be rolling out encryption to all user-assigned Windows machines. Plans to encrypt Macs with FileVault2 have not changed.

If you have any questions or concerns, please leave a comment here or contact the IT Help Desk, 617-824-8080.

Announcing Windows 8 Installations

July 11th, 2014 by michael_jessen

Beginning today, IT will be installing Windows 8.1 on new Windows-based computers instead of Windows 7. All new computers with Windows 8.1 will be distributed with a “cheat sheet,” including a link to an instructional guide on our website. You can take a look at this guide now to familiarize yourself with some of the most noticeable changes.

Many of the functions you use day-to-day remain unchanged, and some are even easier. Most importantly, we’re remaining up-to-date with security enhancements and patches, ensuring utmost reliability.

Mac-based computers will continue to have the most recent version of OS X installed on the computer when it arrives, currently Mavericks. This will transition to Yosemite in the fall.

As always, please feel free to contact the Help Desk if you have any questions, by phone at 617-824-8080, or online at it.emerson.edu/help.

Summer 2014 Workshops and Survey Results

June 9th, 2014 by carlin_corrigan

Every semester, Emerson IT hosts an array of computing and software workshops. During the Spring semester, we offered a wide selection ranging from our traditional Adobe CC workshops to our Microsoft Office drop-in clinics. However, our attendance numbers were less than we had hoped for.

In an effort to increase faculty and staff participation, we recently sent out a survey to gather some data regarding workshop interest and preferences.

The data revealed a few things:

  • Over 95% of the survey takers preferred email as their method of learning about workshop opportunities.
  • More than half of the survey takers did not have time to attend workshops.
  • Less than 35% of the survey takers utilize Lynda.com for free video tutorials.

Many workshop topics were suggested but the most frequently mentioned was Excel, followed closely by Adobe Creative Cloud. The other suggestions were spread out pretty evenly over a variety of subjects – some new and others we currently offer:

SummerWorkshopSuggestions2014

After reflecting on the data and discussing with our IT Staff, we are excited to announce our newest Summer 2014 Workshop Offerings designed specifically for Faculty and Staff, here: it.emerson.edu/workshops

We have included two Excel sessions, Adobe Photoshop and InDesign, a new curated Lynda.com course, and brand new offerings including Google Drive, SQL and Cognos Reports! You can click the link under each listing to RSVP, but we also welcome drop-ins. Don’t forget to add the event to your calendar!

For Canvas questions, the Instructional Technology Group (ITG) offers one-to-one and group-based training. Contact ITG with your availability at itg@emerson.edu or 617-824-8090.

For Skype questions, the Media Services team offers one-to-one training. Contact MSC for more information at media_services@emerson.edu or 617-824-8676.

We hope to see you this Summer!

What’s Up With TrueCrypt Encryption?

June 5th, 2014 by Francis Frain

What's Up With TrueCrypt?Several weeks ago, we announced our plan to encrypt all college-owned laptops and desktops. For Windows, we planned to use the open source software TrueCrypt, but last week, the tech world was surprised to see a dramatic change to the TrueCrypt website. Suddenly, the widely-used software was said to be insecure. The nameless developers released a new version, only for decryption purposes, and announced the old software should no longer be used.

Obviously, this gives us pause. On the one hand, TrueCrypt version 7.1a, which we were deploying, has successfully undergone the first half of an independent security audit. No backdoor exploits or major vulnerabilities were found. The second half of the audit is ongoing for v7.1a.

As is common with any open source software created by anonymous developers, communication can be sporadic and disparate, and it’s just as likely that a new team of developers could resume TrueCrypt’s life. Additionally, the second half of the audit could return with entirely positive results, and many companies/institutions will opt to continue using the software. However, the situation is uncertain.

For this reason, we have decided to take a breath, not react impulsively, and wait for more information. In the interim, the only change we intend to make is to not encrypt new Windows computers. This does not impact our continued encryption of Macs with FileVault2.

Please contact us with questions, and please continue to use this blog as your resource for all security and general IT updates.