tidBiTS
Informs and engages the UNB community on IT developments and news

Management Briefing - ConnectEd

Author: ITS

Posted on Mar 1, 2013

Category: Management Briefings

Background In 2011, ITS determined that enterprise‐level productivity tools such as email, file sharing, printing, etc. had to be replaced. Novell products such as Groupwise no longer served our needs, and the technologies supporting them were long past their ‘best before’ date. After extensive internal and external consultation and review, the Microsoft Exchange platform was chosen for email and calendaring, while Active Directory and Sharepoint were selected for file sharing. The Novell tools never did much to serve the growing Mac population at UNB, while the migration would mean that ITS could support Mac users much more comprehensively and reliably. Migration Students were moved to Live@edu, a free Microsoft cloud service providing email and file storage, in late 2011. Staff and faculty were moved to UNB‐hosted Exchange over the summer of 2012. While not without early technical glitches, both environments have become reliable and economical productivity platforms, very much as expected. Training End user training for Outlook email and calendaring has not been offered to staff and faculty; the tools are pretty intuitive, and can be configured and operational for most users in minutes. There are online tutorials, FAQs and tip sheets available; ITS also subscribes to Lynda.com, an online training site for users looking for more in‐depth instruction in Outlook features and tools (many other tutorials are available as well). Future enhancements In mid‐2013, students will be migrated to Office 365, the next generation of Live@edu, providing more integration with Microsoft applications and services, especially cloud file sharing which will offer far more storage space to our students than ITS ever could. Alumni and retired faculty and staff will also be migrated to the new cloud platform. At about the same time, ITS will deploy Sharepoint, a web‐based, community‐focused toolset that will allow groups like faculties, admin units, and others to share files and to collaborate on projects and initiatives across the university. We will also introduce Lync, a messaging service that will integrate various communication tools such as email, video, telephone, and instant messaging into a single, unified platform to enable community members to make contact, collaborate, and innovate much more easily than ever before.

Terry Nikkel, March 1, 2013