Thursday, July 14, 2011

“Why should I care about this AD upgrade thing?”

ITS has been telling you a lot about our Active Directory (AD) upgrade over the past few weeks. You’ve read that we will begin the next phase of the upgrade at 5:30 PM next Wednesday July 20, and that you will run a process on Thursday July 21 to complete switching your computer away from Novell Netware.  Details will be published next week about what you will see, what steps you may need to take, problems you may encounter and how to get our help with those problems.  Watch for those details in the Daily Piper and the ITS blog.   You will find all the “what,” “where” and “how” in those postings.

What you may want to know now is “why are we moving from Novell to AD?  What benefits will I notice?”  Since Novell Netware is no longer being actively developed, we must upgrade our network OS, and AD is the industry standard product.  We are beginning the upgrade with staff members and the Admin server’s G:, H: and M: drives because you’re here, while most faculty and students are away from campus.  (We will upgrade the Academic server later, during the Fall semester, when faculty and students are back.)  You will see real benefits from this upgrade, including

*faster logins
*one single login to your computer, tied to your network account
*fewer drive mappings (but you’ll keep the ones that matter)
*significantly increased reliability and stability on Admin
*more reliable printing across the network
*unification of Admin and Academic file systems, creating easier access to files that were previously stored on other servers

You won’t see it now, but this upgrade also lays a strong foundation for continued development of new online tools and resources, which will ultimately benefit you as well.

Thank you for your support as we get ready to enter the next phase of the AD upgrade!  If you have questions, please call our ITS Help Desk at 651-696-6525.

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