Technology Changes for Fall 2019
New Identity Management System (IDM)
There has been a significant change to our underlying technology infrastructure over the summer that has been many years in the making. We are now running a system that auto creates My Evergreen accounts for students, faculty and staff. Core to this new system is that accounts are created solely based on a person's record in Banner. Accounts are not created manually anymore. This opens up the door to many new applications and services that we have not been able to consider until this work was done. A few features of the new system you may see include:
- New naming structure for employees. If you are new to the college and your name is Susan Anthony, your username and email will be firstname.lastname@example.org. If you change your name in Banner, your username and email address will change accordingly. If you don't do anything of course you will keep your account exactly as it is now.
- Students get to choose their username and email. Students will have the option of many different forms of usernames and emails that will accurately reflect their chosen name as well as allow their name itself to be confidential if they chose.
- All student employees get their own account. Any student employed by the college will automatically get a new staff account. Likewise if a staff or faculty enrolls in a class or program, they will automatically be provisioned a student account.This means that any person could have up to two accounts at any time.
- Self Service password reset. One of the big advantages to the new system is we now have a much more functional self-service password reset service that is hosted by Microsoft. Key to this is making sure you have an alt-email on record in Banner (HR can help with that) because that is the verification key to being able to reset your password.
- New usernames will be fed into our other systems. Most other systems such as Wordpress, Canvas, Evaluations, ILC/INT will be consuming this data so usernames and emails should reflect the new core information
- We're still working on it. New systems of this size and complexity are living ecosystems and as such we are still actively working on it. If you have questions or notice something that doesn't make sense, please contact the Technical Support Center and the development team will do our best to address the issue.
Thanks to the progress made in our Identity Management System, we are now well underway in preparing to migrate many of the technology resources we've maintained in-house to Microsoft hosted, cloud-based solutions. Once implemented, these changes will significantly enhance the technology services available to our students, staff and faculty.
- Email - Exchange Online: Student mailbox sizes will increase from the current 150MB to 100GB with a modern, browser-based interface. Mobile and desktop clients will continue to be supported. Enhanced security features, such as SafeLinks and Advanced Threat Protection, will work behind the scenes to improve the reliability and safety of our email system.
- OneDrive and Cloud-Based Applications: All users will have 1TB of cloud-based file storage with access to Microsoft Office 365 online applications as well as the ability to download and install the MS Office applications for free. Office 365 provides a robust suite of team-based collaborative tools that we will be testing once all email migrations are complete.
- Implementation Timeline: Prior to the start of Fall quarter 2019, Active Students that are not forwarding their inbox will be migrated to Exchange Online. Students with Email Forwards will be contacted and incrementally migrated. Faculty will begin migrating starting mid Fall quarter with Staff to follow thereafter.
New Portal for Help
We will soon be opening up our ticketing system which will provide a host of new opportunities to provide technical support. From the new help.evergreen.edu site you will be able to communicate directly with technical staff on a ticket you create. We hope to be going live with this before the start of the quarter. The new help portal will allow you to:
- View all tickets: You will be able to view all the tickets that you have submitted even the closed ones (which you can re-open)
- Ticket commenting: You will be able to comment on your existing technology help tickets and provide additional information, which will send an email to technical staff.
- Email notifications of changes: When a comment is made to your ticket, or the ticket is resolved, this will result in an immediate email confirmation so you don't need to figure out if your technical issue has been resolved (or not).
Adobe Subscription Licensing Changes
Adobe has changed its licensing practices once again and we are working hard to accommodate these changes in both the computer labs and on faculty desktops. We have until October 14th to update subscriptions for people who need these products for their teaching or research. The price per license has gone up as well so we ask that you consider carefully whether or not this is critical to your work or if you could learn one of the many alternatives that are available. If you do need a new subscription, there are a few things you should be aware of.
- Device license are no longer possible for individual machines: We have in the past been able to purchase device licenses for faculty. The new Adobe contract does not allow this, which means if you need a 1 year subscription it will need to be a named license and the cost is $250/year for a single license.
- Converting from Device to Named: The process for moving from a device to named licensewill require more than a simple service call. These machines will require rebuilds which will need to be scheduled with the Technical Support Center. We will work through these as quickly as possible but be aware of the fact that given where we are in the academic year this may create bottle necks for the TSC.
- Alternatives do exist! There are many functional and well designed alternatives to the applications found in the Creative Cloud suite. If you are curious about these, touch base with the TSC staff and they can work with you to find a recommended alternative.
Physical Computing Center
- There is a new lab on campus in Lib 2708 across the hallway from Media Loan.
- The lab offers 3D printing, as well as training and support for robotics, embedded computing, and 3D modeling.
- It has 12 workstations as well as a podium for presentations and lectures.
- The lab is staffed by two interns who are a part of the larger Computer science internship group. The interns provide curricular support to the academic programs scheduled in the space as well as individual support to other users of the lab.
Evergreen's original instance of WordPress hosted at blogs.evergreen.edu is being retired due to an aging database and will gradually be replaced by a new instance at wordpress.evergreen.edu.
- Site owners can request to have their site migrated to sites.evergreen.edu or to wordpress.evergreen.edu
- All new students sites and e-portfolios will be hosted at wordpress.evergreen.edu
- Faculty/staff college-related sites are still being hosted at sites.evergreen.edu - site creation is by request