Support policies

Please note IT does not support the following, as they are provided to the NAU campus by central ITS. If you are having trouble with any of the following you need to contact either the campus ITS help desk, or the academic computing help desk.

  1. Faculty and staff email is maintained and supported by campus ITS. Student email (NAU g-mail) is supported by academic computing.
  2. Faculty and staff are provided with a home drive on Bonsai by campus ITS. Students are provided a home drive on Dana which is supported by academic computing.
  3. CEFNS IT does not repair or service printers; central ITS will do this as long as the printer has a NAU property control number and it is either a HP or Dell laser printer. They can sometimes service a Dell inkjet if it is still under warranty and tagged.
  4. PDA’s/SmartPhones are supported by ITS. Please contact the Solution Center if you have a problem. Also please visit the ITS Mobile device Support Policy web page to verify a device is fully supported prior to purchase.

CEFNS computing labs policies

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Computer Classroom and Lab shutdown 

The University has asked all areas to try to save resources by shutting down unused computers overnight. This is an admirable request and as a consequence CEFNS IT maintains a computer shutdown policy. Users on computers in labs and classrooms will be informed that the machine is shutting down and that they need to save work if they do not want to lose it. After this grace period the computer shuts down. During the work week the computer automatically starts in the morning before classes. Having worked through a series of compromises the first shutdown occurs at 11 p.m. and a second at 3 a.m.
We CANNOT manage multiple schedules for specific situations as it is too time consuming to maintain. Obviously if a user needs to continue working then they can restart the computer. At most this would cost them 5 minutes - about the time it takes to go to the rest room! The second shutdown is simply to catch computers that get restarted at 11 p.m. as these are rarely shutdown after users are finished with them.

We do not think that this is an unreasonable policy - we think it is admirable and something that the few students who are affected by it should plan to work around.

Updates

CEFNS IT will upgrade (re-image) all computer labs prior to the start of the spring and fall semesters. To facilitate this we require information concerning new software additions prior to the start of the semester. The cut-off points are the last day of fall semester for the spring update and mid-July for the fall update. 

CEFNS IT will endeavor to remind teaching faculty via email prior to this cut-off date. Please note that we cannot add software to whole computer labs once the image is deployed – it is too time-consuming to manually do this.

Users of the labs should treat the resource with respect – keeping foods and liquids well away from any computer, keyboard etc. damage caused by food or drink may well be charged to the individual.

Printing

Most computer labs that we manage have dedicated printers, these in almost all cases point to the students' academic print server. All printing is charged immediately to the student's printing account. Unless the student has a prepay or free quota this is directly forwarded to the bursar every month. A single side to a black only printer costs $0.10 and to a color printer $0.35. There can always be problems printing (server problems, printer problems [no paper, toner etc.] however, we require that we are informed with one business day of any issues that require a credit. Requests after this grace period will not be accepted. 

Data Storage

We provide a small amount of data storage space in our computer labs for students, and instructors. We also have a system whereby a users settings can follower the user from computer to computer. However we do not provide space for third party data application managers such as Dropbox. If Dropbox is found on our systems we delete its whole folder.

CEFNS classroom policies

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The audio visual equipment in classrooms is supported in the following way: we will try to troubleshoot problems with hardware and will replace items such as bulbs. However, fixing hardware usually requires communication with the vendor or supplier; this often can take several weeks if there is a major problem It is the department that “owns the room” responsibility to fund this hardware and replacements of items needed.

While CEFNS-IT will do everything it can to ensure that the A/V presentation equipment in each classroom is functional, please keep in mind that this equipment does fail and that it may become unavailable without notice. With this in mind, please ALWAYS be prepared to perform your instruction without the aid of the classroom A/V systems.

It is also teaching staff's responsibility to be prepared when a major failure occurs; e.g. have a backup system available. For fast turnarounds, in cases like bulb failures, it would be prudent for the department to hold a stock of replacement bulbs. CEFNS IT will update the software for the lectern computers and when deemed necessary. Departments should plan into their budgeting a provision to replace these machines every 4 years at the longest.

CEFNS Linux or Unix desktop support

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While NAU does not support Linux or UNIX desktops, let us know if you have questions and we may be able to help.

CEFNS Macintosh support policies

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On staff and faculty machines we install and maintain a supported operating system of Mac OS versions 10.5 (Leopard) and 10.6 (Snow Leopard) that contains all base software that is either free or licensed via campus agreements.

This includes: web and connectivity plug-ins and applications, Firefox, Google Earth, iLife '09, Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac, and Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection. NAU does not have a campus license for any Adobe products; however it does have a generous purchase agreement. Often this is cheaper than even the academic versions that are available from the book store. Please contact us directly for information.

Application/system updates

Apple Software Updates are not automatically applied to Mac OS systems as they are for Windows based systems. Updates must be applied by the end user manually. The end user will be notified by the Apple Software Update application when Mac OS and Mac Application updates are available, and the end user must apply all Apple supplied updates to both OS and Applications.

Further, Microsoft Office installs must be manually updated by the end user through the Microsoft Software Update application. The end user will be notified by the Microsoft Software Update application when Office and Remote Desktop Connection updates are available.

As a general rule, if you are not sure about having all of the available updates just continue to run the updater application until you are prompted for no new updates.

CEFNS purchased equipment support policies

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Computers

We can purchase computers from Dell and Apple and tablets from HP. In all cases please contact us to check on whether we will support it. The basic requirements are a minimum of 4 GB ram and warranty of at least 3 years.

All the above vendors can meet this requirement. We will fully support a system while it is under warranty; however once it drops off warranty the department takes responsibility for replacement parts etc. At present we follow ITS’s support policy of maintaining laptop\desktop systems up to 4 years.

Printers

CEFNS IT does not have hardware technicians that support printers. Central ITS have a technician that will repair and service HP or Dell laser printers, however they do require that the printer has a NAU property control number. In most cases it is not possible to repair Inkjets.

CEFNS website policies

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College websites are now now maintained on the University Content Management System (CMS). This is a commercial product supplied by Ektron. The College and all Department sites are housed on this system. CEFNS IT maintains a dedicated web server for use by any staff or faculty member. We also support group and project sites as well as technical applications.

We can offer assistance with issues that might be described as technical. Again currently we support the following web technologies: html, php, MySQL, no .asp or IIS specific extensions. 

We also have the ability to setup EBusiness pages that collect payments for events or the like and web databases. For either of these please send a request to cefnsithelp@nau.edu with full details.

In all cases with new developments, we need sufficient time to design, build and test and so these cannot be left to the last minute. Setting up a page may be quick (a day), and EBusiness page will take 2 weeks (a payment account needs to be set up) and a whole site may take a month or more. We do not have a full time web administrator or designer.

Currently the notice period for new web applications/sites is three months.

Lastly the university has recent purchased a new content management system for web sites. Over the next few months we will evaluate this new development.

It has yet to be determined what is the full list of web technologies that will be supported, but since this is Microsoft Windows server it will include html and asp and probably a MS SQL Server database backend. It may or may not be setup for php and MySQL.

If it is found to provide savings for my team in terms of time and money and will satisfy the College’s needs in full, then all (with probable exception of personal sites) our current sites may we be transitioned to the new CMS system over the coming year.

CEFNS Windows support policies

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On staff and faculty machines we install and maintain a supported operating system, which is currently Windows 7, that contains all base software that is either free or licensed via campus agreements. This includes: web and connectivity plug-ins and applications, browsers, email client, Microsoft Office and a pdf reader. The installation of any other software requires a valid license.

This may involve either a purchase by the individual user or the department. If software such as shareware is installed, this should either be purchased or removed after the expiration of the trial period; and a common example here would be WinZip. NAU does not have a campus license for any Adobe products; however it does have a generous purchase agreement. Often this is cheaper than even the academic versions that are available from the book store. Please contact us directly for information.