Friday, December 27, 2013

Network Maintenance Day Coming Saturday 1/4/14

ITS staff will conduct a regular system maintenance period on Saturday January 4 2014, from 6:00 AM until 12:00 noon.  We will be performing upgrades, testing connections, patching and doing other tasks to keep our critical campus information systems running efficiently.

Please expect that most networked services - including Banner, 1600grand, DegreeWorks and PaperCut-based printing - will be inaccessible, completely or intermittently, during the maintenance period.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact the ITS Help Desk at helpdesk@macalester.edu or 651-696-6525.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Discounted Microsoft Office for Employees

Did you know that Macalester faculty and staff members can purchase Microsoft Office at a substantial discount for use on personally-owned computers? This is the Home Use Program (HUP), which is part of our Microsoft Campus Agreement.  Office includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and (on PCs only) Access.  All you need is our unique Program Code and $9.95.  Read all about it starting at http://www.macalester.edu/its/hardware-software/microsoftoffice/

The fine print: you can buy and use Office on personally-owned computers while you remain employed at Macalester College.  If you leave the College, you must delete the software.  Because participation is restricted only to Macalester employees, it is necessary for you to log into the HUP purchasing page on our Web server to get the code, using your regular network password. 

Here's an overview of the HUP program:
http://www.microsofthup.com/hupus/chooser.aspx?culture=en-US

Microsoft's HUP Frequently Asked Questions may be useful to you:
http://www.microsofthup.com/hupus/faq.aspx

ITS staff have written step-by-step instructions on how to purchase Office with the HUP discount:
https://helpdesk.macalester.edu/helpdesk/WebObjects/Helpdesk.woa/wa/FaqActions/view?faqId=735

As always, if you have questions, please contact the ITS Help Desk, helpdesk@macalester.edu or 651-696-6525.   Faculty, your AIAs can assist you as well. 

Google Updates Biweekly Post


Publication Date: December 18, 2013

The Google Updates Biweekly Post will take a break and resume resume in January 2014. Happy New Year!

Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


Opt-in to use new features: Colored sheet tabs, custom number formatting, paste transpose and more.


Your messages are more safe and secure, your images are checked for known viruses or malware, and you’ll never have to press that pesky “display images below” link again.


Export a copy of your Gmail and Google Calendar data, making it easy to back up your data or move to another service.


Coming soon: A new drop down menu atop each Drive folder lets you take quick actions like rename, share, organize, and more.


Creating events in Google Calendar is now faster with autocomplete predictions from Google Maps.

Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.


Adoption of security standards is widespread across the industry, dramatically reducing spammers’ ability to impersonate domains that users trust, and making email phishing less effective.


Google News readers on Android and iOS devices: A new version of the mobile web app provides an improved overall experience resulting in a kind of real time news desk for you on your phone.


Chrome Apps work offline, update automatically and sync to any computer where you're signed into Chrome, so you can pick up where you left off.

Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


The notion that Google ad-placement practices threaten our privacy is raving nonsense.


Google is unveiling six new Global Impact Awards—totaling $11.5 million in grants—to innovators using technology to tackle the world’s toughest challenges.


NYTimes Q&A


A change to Gmail that relegated retailers’ emails to a separate inbox for promotions has had a big effect during the busiest shopping period of the year, according to three services that manage mass emails.


Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.


Discover the top 100 searches


As 2013 comes to a close, these are some of the videos, channels and moments that shaped our year.


Google Doodle: December 9, 2013


Google Doodle: December 14, 2013


Friday, December 13, 2013

Banner/1600grand Scheduled Maintenance 12/21/13

ITS staff will be performing necessary scheduled maintenance to Banner and 1600grand on Saturday December 21, beginning at 6:00 AM and ending by 10:00 AM.  Please expect that Banner and 1600grand will not be available for some or all of this time.  No other services, including email, Internet access, Moodle and the file servers, should be affected. If you have questions about this maintenance period, please contact the ITS Help Desk, helpdesk@macalester.edu or 651-696-6525.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Google Updates Attachments


Google has updated the 'attachments' function in email with new ways to view, download and save.
  • View attachments in your email by clicking the title of the attachment 
  • Download attachments to another location by clicking the down arrow button shown above
  • Save attachments directly to Google Drive by clicking the Google Drive button shown above
For more details, see Google's blog.

If you're unsure of how to manage this change or would like assistance, please contact the ITS Help Desk at 651-696-6525 or helpdesk@macalester.edu.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Google Updates Biweekly Post


Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


12/2/2013: Preview attachments feature


View attachments and save files directly to Google Drive without ever leaving Gmail.


The sign-in page for Gmail will now be identical to the sign-in page for Google Calendar, Google Drive, or any other Google Apps service.


Following the introduction of the new look full-screen video chat last month, Google rolled out some new Hangouts features specifically for Google Apps customers.


Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.


Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt says you should switch. When it comes to productivity, is he right?


A year after it was introduced, Google's nerdy mapping-backpack is pushing into new territory

Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


Andy Rubin is the engineer heading Google’s robotics effort. He is the man who built the Android software for smartphones.


The search giant has for years been evasive about its plans for a so-called public cloud of computers and data storage that is rented to individuals and businesses.


Google partnered with Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer to run a special session of Solve for X on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., to discuss and debate audacious science and technology moonshots that could transform the world.


Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.






Watch this 5 minute TEDTalk for worthwhile time-saving tech tips, including a couple Google ones!


Infographic: Some argue Google is changing the way we think and remember.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Are Your Files Backed Up? They should be.



Students, you're working on capstone projects, term papers, research presentations and résumés.  Faculty are polishing research papers, journal articles, book manuscripts and letters of recommendation.  Staff are updating information constantly.  Everyone is working with a lot of data - and it's all important.

Is it all stored in one place?  Along with your pictures, movies and music?  What will you do if that computer gets stolen, dropped, lost or destroyed by a spilled drink (besides curse and cry?) 

Back up your data.  You'll be glad you did.  There are multiple ways to do this:
  • Store copies of your most critical files in your personal webfile.macalester.edu.
  • External hard drives are not expensive.  Buy one.  Use it. Faculty, consult your AIAs for recommendations; staff, call the Help Desk or David Sisk.
  • Flash drives, aka “thumb drives,” are even cheaper.  Buy two.  Use them.
  • Check out 'cloud' storage solutions—some are cheap, some are free (like CrashPlan).  Faculty, your AIAs can help you set up the pay version, CrashPlan Pro, at a nominal cost; staff, consider buying CrashPlan Pro as well.
  • Speaking of cloud storage, back up important files to your Google Drive.  It's there; use it.
  • Consider burning your data to CD or DVD for archiving.  Even if your computer doesn't have an optical drive, many public-access computers do. 
For tips and assistance in backing up your data, please contact the ITS Help Desk at 651-696-6525 or helpdesk@macalester.edu.  Faculty, talk with your AIA.  Play it safe, and you won't be sorry.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Google Updates Biweekly Post



Publication Date: November 20, 2013

Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


Google Apps users who use their Google+ identity in YouTube will now have the option to post videos that are viewable only by others at their domain.


This new feature lets you view Gmail attachments and save files directly to Google Drive without ever leaving Gmail.


With the latest Chrome Beta release, you can now visually scan your tabs for a speaker icon to quickly figure out where that sound or music is coming from.


With the update to the Gmail iOS app, you’ll be able to do even more with your iPad.


Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


In a year in which government surveillance has dominated the headlines, Google is updating their Transparency Report for the eighth time.


Richard Salgado, Google’s Director of Law Enforcement and Information Security, testified before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and the Law on the Surveillance Transparency Act of 2013.


Judge Denny Chin said in his ruling that Google’s project did not replace books. “Indeed, all society benefits,” he said.


Eric T. Schneiderman, attorney general of New York, said Google violated not only users’ privacy, but their trust as well.


Google is partnering with global investment firm KKR to invest in six utility-scale solar facilities in California and Arizona.


Google is granting $3.2 million to support data analysis of U.S. veterans’ higher education.

Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.


A virtual visit to the early Christian cemetery is also possible on Google maps, which adapted its street view program to go underground.


On the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address, there’s three new exhibits now available on the Google Cultural Institute focus on President Lincoln and the 272 words that shaped a nation’s understanding of its identity.


You can now explore panoramic imagery of one of the most romantic spots in the world, captured with Google’s Street View Trekker technology.




A poignant advert for Google India tells the story of two friends separated by the partitioning of Pakistan and India who are reunited by a few Google searches.
Google Search: emotional Google India reunion advert goes viral

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Argos Web Viewer for Mac OS and Windows OS Available November 11, 2013

Introducing the Argos Web Viewer argos.macalester.edu/argos/awv



A new way to access Argos, Macalester's reporting tool, is now available with Argos Web Viewer. Mac OS and Windows OS users can now run reports from any web browser. With Argos Web Viewer, Mac OS users are no longer required to access Argos via Citrix to run reports. To get started, go to argos.macalester.edu and click Argos Web Viewer or go directly to argos.macalester.edu/argos/awv.

Get a Tour


To get a tour of the new features, follow the tutorial prompt that appears the first time you log into Argos Web Viewer. Run the tutorial anytime thereafter from the Help menu.

How to Run a Report

  1. Go to argos.macalester.edu/argos/awv and log in.
  2. Navigate to a folder.
  3. Click on a report datablock.
  4. Enter report parameters.
  5. Select the report from menu.
  6. Click Run.
Check out more tutorials on the Argos Web Viewer.  Visit ITS Argos Info for help logging in, training resources, and FAQs. For assistance, contact the ITS Help Desk at 651-696-6525 or helpdesk@macalester.edu

Monday, November 11, 2013

Coming Soon: Argos Web Viewer

Argos Web Viewer Preview



Starting Wednesday, November 13, 2013, Macalester Argos users may access reports using the Argos Web Viewer. Same great reports, just a different look and feel. Stay tuned for more information on working in this new report environment.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Resolved: Off-campus Telephone Problems 11/7/13

 As of 11:30 AM, all outbound and inbound calling services have been restored.  If you encounter any further telephone problems, please contact Kelly Borke at 651-696-6566 or borke@macalester.edu.

Original post:

We are having problems with our local and long distance phone service.  Currently we can neither call off campus nor receive calls from off-campus.  (On-campus calls, from one Macalester extension  to another, are working normally.)  We have contacted our vendors and they are working to resolve this issue.  We will update this notice when services are restored. We apologize for this inconvenience.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Google Updates Biweekly Post

Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.

It includes notifications, a Google+ share box (if Google+ is enabled), and a new App Launcher with links to other Google products.

This means that IE9 users who access Gmail and other Google Apps services will be notified “within the next few weeks” that they need to upgrade to a more modern browser.

Each time a new version of Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari browsers is released, Google begins supporting the update and stops supporting the third-oldest version.

This will prevent your photo, name, +1s and other activity from appearing in Google's advertisements.

Starting today when Google Calendar invitations are sent to members of a Google Group, the attendee list will automatically update as people join or leave the group.

Chome will have a "reset browser settings" button in the last update, which lets you easily return to a factory-fresh state.

In Slides, you'll see their names appear next to their cursor as they type—just like in Docs.

Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.

NYTimes Book Review

Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.

Speculation swirls around two mysterious barges as officials remain tight-lipped.

This summer, the company sped up a project to encrypt internal systems.

Google and Yahoo said that they were unaware of government accessing of their data links.

Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.

Google Doodles: Halloween