Spring Cleaning Your Devices for Students

The close of the semester is a great time to spring clean your devices.

You should always back up your files, but sometimes that falls to the wayside in the busyness at the end of the semester. Now is a great time to make that much needed back up. Plug your mobile devices into your computer to back them up, or back them up to the cloud. You can back up files on your computer with Office365 to OneDrive or to a personal portable hard drive.

You should also delete any unneeded files (and make sure to empty the trash bin when you’re done to permanently delete the files) to free up space on your computer. This is also a great time to go through your email account and delete any unneeded emails, like all those issues of Campus News that aren’t relevant anymore.

You should also clean out your network folders, especially your public folder, which is accessible to anyone on campus. At the end of each academic year, all the content in your network public folder will be moved into your private folder.  This has become necessary due to a growing academic integrity issue resulting from students reusing materials from other students’ public folders.  Remember: public folders should not be used for storing course materials as everyone on the network can see these files.  Instead, please use your private folder, to which only you have access.

Running updates on your computer is also a good thing to do for spring cleaning. It’s easy to just click “install later” when it’s time for your device to update its system, but this may be slowing down your computer. Optimize your device’s performance by installing those put-off system and application updates now.

If you’re in the process of spring cleaning, you might have found some old devices that you don’t need anymore. Donating these is a great way to help the environment and declutter your home, but make sure the device is properly wiped of all personal information before it leaves your ownership. Visit the EPA’s website for suggested places to donate your old electronics.

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Tech Tip: How to Schedule a Meeting in Zoom

Meetings can be scheduled via Zoom through two different ways 

The traditional way has been to click the My Meetings tab and select Schedule a New Meeting. 

 

Now, you can also click the Host a Meeting menu on the top left side and choose Schedule a Meeting. 

 

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What’s an ITS Ticket?

If you have contacted ITS for assistance with an issue, you may see an email that looks something like this:

The upper box will contain details on what the ITS team has done to fix your problem. The lower box will have your information, let you know who is responsible for your ticket at ITS, and contain a brief description of your problem.

ITS will continue to email you updates using this method until the issue is resolved.

For more information on using the ticket system, including how to enter your own tickets, click here.

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Tech Tip: Outlook Not Working?

If you have just changed your network password, you may find that Outlook no longer works. To fix this, you will have to enter and save the new password in Outlook when you’re prompted. You will need to do this every time you change your network password. 

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Cisco AMP for Endpoints and Mojave

There’s a new version of Cisco AMP for Endpoints (our antivirus software). If you’ve updated your Mac to Mojave, when AMP for Endpoints upgrades to version 1.9.0, your Mac may require a system setting change for AMP to continue functioning. If the AMP icon on the bar along the top has a flashing exclamation point, it requires attention. Here’s how to repair those settings.

 

Step 1:

Click the flashing icon and select Grant Full Disk Access.

 

Step 2:

AMP will present you with basic instructions, which are a less detailed version of the instructions contained in this article. Click OK.

 

Step 3:

The Security & Privacy page will automatically open. Click the lock at the bottom of the screen.

 

Step 4:

Enter your credentials and click Unlock.

 

Step 5:

Now, in the amp folder, drag the application ampdaemon to the box in the Security & Privacy window.

 

Step 6:

When a checked box appears by the ampdaemon application, click the lock to prevent any further changes. AMP will now function as normal on your computer.

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Tech Tip: How to Use the Ticket System

Enter a Ticket 

You can enter your own tickets for support from the ITS Help Desk. Just navigate to https://helpdesk.etown.edu/helpdesk/WebObjects/Helpdesk.woa or click the button on the ITS webpage (https://www.etown.edu/offices/its/). After you sign in using your E-town username (without the @etown.edu) and password, you will be directed to a page where you can enter your request details. Choose the category that best fits your problem first, then type a subject and description. Enter information in the additional fields, if applicable. Click Save. ITS staff will be notified of your ticket and will contact you as soon as possible.  

Check a Ticket 

To see if any updates have been made to your ticket, click on the “History” tab at the top of the webpage. There, you can see all your open tickets and select the one that you would like to view. You can also see your ticket number. 

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Tech Tip: Microsoft Office and Mojave

Mac users who wish to update their computer to Mojave must be sure that all Microsoft Office software is updated. Some older versions of the software will not work on Mojave. More information can be found here 

To avoid issues like this altogether, update Office software regularly. You can update the software from any Office application. Instructions can be found here.

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Tech Tip: Introducing the Myer Gaming Room!

If you live in Myer, you’ve probably noticed that ITS has been hard at work doing something involving a wall of TVs. Now, that project is finally complete – and it’s a gaming room! There are four Xboxes for students to use. Adding personal accounts is easy, and more information can be found at this KB article. Additionally, you can also bring your own device. Check the laminated instructions in the room for more information. 

If you encounter any problems, DO NOT try to fix them yourself. Contact ITS at ext. 3333. Our office hours are Monday – Thursday 8:00 am – 9:00 pm, Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, and Saturday 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm. 

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Tech Tip: Reset Your Password Through Office365

The days of trouble resetting a forgotten password are over. You can now reset your password through Office365, using an alternate email or phone number.

You should enter a backup email or phone here to ensure continued access to your account, and the ability to reset your password without contacting the Help Desk.

If you ever forget your password or when it expires, click “Can’t access your account?” on the Microsoft sign-in page and select “Work or school account.” Follow the prompts to reset your password.

Click here for detailed instructions.

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Tech Tip: Password Rules Update

With the transition to Office365 as our mail server, the rules for password complexity have changed slightly. In addition to the previous rules, your new password cannot contain any of Microsoft’s banned words (common words like Fall, Password, or Office) or any of Microsoft’s banned substitutions (like “P@ssword”). The full rules read as following: 

  • 8 characters minimum 
  • Must contain 3 of the following 4 items:  
    • Uppercase letter 
    • Lowercase letter 
    • Number 
    • Special character like # 
  • Cannot be your username or email address 
  • Cannot be the same as your last ten passwords 
  • Cannot contain any of Microsoft’s banned words (common words like Fall, Password, or Office) 
  • Cannot contain any of Microsoft’s banned substitutions (like “P@ssword”)  

We suggest you use a pass phrase, which is a long phrase or sentence that is easy to remember and hard for others to figure out.

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Tech Tip: Outlook Rules

Is your inbox always cluttered with a lot of email that’s potentially useful, but hides the truly important email that you’re looking for? Try creating a rule in Outlook. ITS’s newest Knowledgebase article details just how to do that. Maximize your productivity by filtering your mail to stay organized and up-to-date, and never lose an important email again.  

Click here to find out how.

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Tech Tip: Stop Programs Running at Startup

One reason that your computer may be running slowly may be too many programs set to run at startup. Here’s how to disable those programs to clean and speed up your computer. 

On Windows, right-click the windows icon and select Task Manager. Click the Startup tab. Click unnecessary apps and select Disable. Windows will even tell you the level of impact that specific apps have. 

For Macs, navigate to Apple menu > System Preferences > Users & Groups. Choose your user account and click Login Items. To disable a program, click on the title and select the minus icon. 

Adapted from https://support.apple.com/kb/PH25590?locale=en_US and https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4026268/windows-change-startup-apps-in-windows-10.

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Tech Tip: Have You Been Pwned?

Companies are being hacked and losing encrypted information every day, even if it only makes the news occasionally. Want to know if your information has been part of a breach? Haveibeenpwned.com is here to help. Enter your email into their search bar, and they’ll search their database of over 5 billion “pwned” accounts and let you know if your data was part of a breach. 

What happens if you find your email on the list? You’ll want to immediately change your password on the hacked account and any other accounts that you used the same password for. Try a password manager to generate a secure and unique password for each account. ITS recommends Password Safe, LastPass, or Dashlane. If the account contained any sensitive information, contact the parties responsible for that information and alert them to potential identity theft attempts.

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Keep Your Home Secured

We lock our doors and have alarm systems to prevent break-ins in our homes. So why don’t we extend the same precautions for our online safety? In this interconnected world, someone gaining access to your home wifi could be catastrophic. Anyone with access to your home wifi can theoretically see any passwords or other sensitive information that you enter. This is especially relevant when dealing with home wifi since this is where most people do important tasks like paying bills or filling out other important paperwork. 

One way that people look for vulnerable home networks is called wardriving. This is when people drive around neighborhoods and search for networks that might be easy to break into. Software for doing this is readily available online. Additionally, there are no laws surrounding this technique, so hackers can perform it without legal consequences.  

To help secure your home network, it’s a good idea to change your router password from the default. The same rules apply to this password as all other passwords, and ITS recommends using a passphrase (like Ilovesummer!) and avoiding obvious words like the name of your dog. Click on your provider’s name for instructions on how to change the router password: Verizon, Comcast. 

Additionally, make sure you replace your router every four or five years. This not only helps ensure that the security protocols are up-to-date but also keeps your home network from slowing down as the router ages. 

Protect your home from physical break-ins as well as online ones.

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Tech Tip: Personal Information on Search Sites

The amount of personal information that’s just a Google away is pretty scary. With just a name and area code, or a phone number, you can find out addresses, family members, and even criminal records on sites like Whitepages and Spokeo. Fortunately, these sites are required by federal law to remove listings if contacted. Most sites do have a process for removing your information, usually found at the bottom of the page. If not, emailing the site will also necessitate removal of your information. 

For information about processes specific to certain sites, click here.

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