Nov 22, 2013
By David Sweetman
Below is this month's status report for significant projects which LSA IT is leading or other Michigan IT initiatives that may be of interest to you. Feedback and questions are always welcome.
Updated MiWorkspace Timeline - As announced at yesterday’s Chair & Directors meeting, given the significant changes being introduced by AST and desire for opportunity for greater involvement across LSA in planning, the MiWorkspace IT Rationalization timeline is also being revised to enable greater opportunity for involvement in planning. We are seeking departments to volunteer to transition during this academic year. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more. Other transitions will be rescheduled to a later time. (Contact: David Sweetman).
MiWorkspace Pilot Milestone - Yesterday we reached a significant milestone in MiWorkspace efforts, with our initial pilot user batch in Comm Studies now using MiWorkspace. We are pleased to report the migration went smoothly. Despite the updated MiWorkspace timeline mentioned above, the Comm Studies, DMC, and other Dean’s Office area pilots are all continuing as previously scheduled, with these pilots being thoroughly evaluated and used to refine further implementation. (Contact: David Sweetman).
Eduroam - ITS added an additional Wi-Fi network across the academic campus. Eduroam (education roaming) is a secured Wi-Fi network service that allows students, faculty and staff to use their home institution's Wi-Fi credentials to access Wi-Fi network services, when visiting other eduroam participating institutions—without having to set up a guest account. This will be useful to many visitors to our campus. U-M students, faculty and staff should continue to use MWireless while on our campus and can now use eduroam at other participating institutions. More info. (Contact: 764-HELP).
Project Horizon - Based on campus feedback, there were recently some changes to Project Horizon, the initiative to retire underutilized IT services at the University. If you received a notification on October 24 regarding services you use being retired, that status may have changed. Specifically, Web Application Hosting, AFS Group Storage, Oracle Database Hosting, MediaWiki and Drupal will remain available. More info. (Contacts: Terry Houser, Keila Walton).
OSX 10.9: Incompatibility issues - LSA Mac users are strongly advised against upgrading their computers to OSX 10.9 ("Mavericks") until further notice. Updating to 10.9 may interfere with extended printing functionality--such as duplex, stapling, etc--with Konica devices. We also have reports of missing email, machine slowdowns, and additional application and/or hardware incompatibilities with 10.9. (Contact: Greg Beyer).
GMail and other Google updates - Google will be continuing to provide updates to GMail and other Google tools over the coming weeks. Some of the new features include: downloading attachments directly to Google Drive, location sharing and SMS, animated GIF support in the mobile app, scheduled Hangouts On Air, auto enhance photos, and more. (Contact: Eric Fruth).
M+Box Shared Accounts and other M+Box updates - Shared M+Box cloud-based file storage accounts are now available for departments, projects, and other groups that require collaborative storage (in addition to user-based accounts previously available). Shared accounts are not connected to an individual user and offer 200GB of storage compared to 50GB for standard personal accounts. M+Box is also implementing a number of other new features over the next few weeks. (Contact: 764-HELP).
SPSS and SAS Workshops - CSCAR - the Center for Statistical Consultation and Research conducts a variety of statistical workshops that are open to all faculty, staff, and students. Workshop listing.
Staff transitions – This month LSA bid farewell to Bill Bingham, who accepted a position with ITS managing a portion of MiWorkspace Neighborhood IT, and David Rhey and Aaron Fown, who are each pursuing an opportunity outside the University. As with any organizational change, continuity of quality service to users remains the top priority throughout these transitions. (Contact: David Sweetman).
Recent CTools release - UM recently implemented CTools 2.9J which, among other things, made the Lesson Builder learning sequencing tool generally available. This tool allows instructors to build custom learning sequences that include content delivery, interactions, assessments and so forth. This significant enhancement to our online learning capability has been shaped through collaboration with faculty focus groups. LSA-ISS, CRLT, Library Knowledge Navigation Center, and ITS Teaching and Learning are all familiar with the tool and able to provide support.
New and Updated Software Available – Since last month's update, we’ve released the following upgrades: Maple 17, Materials Studio 6.1, MATLAB R2013b, SPSS 22, and Microsoft Windows 8.1. Maintenance contracts for the following existing titles in the portfolio were renewed: Intel C++ & Fortran Composer XE for Mac, SolidWorks for Instruction, and Stat/Transfer. Click here for a complete list of all titles available. (Contact: Crystal Borgman, email@example.com).
IT in LSA cohesive service management implementation continues - The project for the new ServiceLink tool continues. Preparations for the next releases, which cover Configuration Management and Change Management, are progressing well. IT Staff will have access to Configuration Management in mid-December and Change Management in mid-January. Specifics about training for the new modules will be coming out soon. More info. (Contact: Erin Dietrich).
Local File Backup - Need free, unlimited backup storage for your workstation? We can help. Desktop backup is available to all LSA faculty and staff using Linux, Mac and Windows. This is only intended for cases where files need to be stored on the local workstation. If all your files are stored in M+Box, Google Drive, LSA shared network drives, or LSA research storage space, your data is already backed up and covered. (Contact: Marissa Green, Ryan Bankston, firstname.lastname@example.org).
Identity & Access Management integration - While the University has done much in recent years to streamline the way people log in to many of our services, much remains to be done, especially as we prepare for increased integration with cloud-based services into the future. The University is in the early stages of planning for a comprehensive and integrated identity and access management solution across the Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and Flint campuses in addition to the Health System. More info. (Contact: DePriest Dockins).
University-wide agreement for Amazon Web Services (AWS) - The University recently signed an enterprise agreement with Amazon Web Services (AWS) for cloud-based infrastructure services, with service offerings planned for early 2014. Advantages of the enterprise agreement include integration with university infrastructure, cost savings through aggregating usage, simplified billing, several important legal protections for data, and other support services. More info. (Contacts: Bob Sabourin, Terry Houser).