MichiganTech Wireless Changes – Certificate Warning

Michigan Tech is implementing a new controller for the MichiganTech wireless network.  This change is needed to implement AirPrint and GooglePrint features this fall.  This change will only affect the MichiganTech SSID.

After Wednesday August 19 at 7 AM you may see a certificate popup on your mobile device or laptop (similar to the image below).  When you see this message, click Accept and you will continue to be connected to the wireless network.

As always, if you have any issues or questions, please contact IT Help at 906-487-1111 or it-help@mtu.edu

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Important Campus Information on Windows 10

Windows 10 is available to users free for one year; this offer expires July 29, 2016.  More information is at: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10-faq.

However, there are three issues all home users need to know before upgrading:

  • Windows 10 is NOT COMPATIBLE with our campus F5 VPN Server, i.e., off-campus users will not be able to “Get an MTU Address.” The goal is to have this fixed by late August, but currently there are no workarounds.
  • Microsoft Edge web browser (New Internet Explorer) is not compatible with Banner, Banweb, and possibly other Michigan Tech related sites.  Workaround: You can install Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox and get most functionality, however not all.
  • Hundreds of campus applications have not been tested, so we cannot make any guarantees that your software will work.

Starting late fall semester, Information Technology will solicit volunteers from our Faculty/Staff to pilot a deployment of Windows 10.  Volunteers will have their machines upgraded to Windows 10 with our standard faculty/staff image, and we will work to test standard applications.  After the standard applications have been tested, we will work with faculty and staff to test specific departmental software, e.g., Mathematica, Matlab, ImageNow, Sewer/Water/AutoCAD, etc.  If you’re interested in being an early adopter, send an email to it-help@mtu.edu and we will add you to the list of volunteers whom we will contact when testing begins.

IT to eliminate most monthly Telcom bills

The Executive Team and the IT Governance Committee have approved a proposal to eliminate most monthly bills for network and voice services, beginning July 1, 2015.

The chargeback billing model is an antiquated system that most universities have abandoned. It was appropriate during the 1990′s, due to explosive growth of network connections and the internet, but has long since outlived its usefulness.

To recover the necessary revenue, most departments will have their general fund budgets reduced by the amount that they paid in Telcom charges in Fiscal Year 2014. Some Auxiliary and Research units will continue to be billed, but not on a per-jack or per-phone basis.

New network connections will be allowed, with only a nominal $50 activation fee, plus any needed parts or student labor costs if a jack requires an upgrade.

New phone lines will be allowed, but the department will pay the actual cost of the telephones, along with the nominal activation fee and any necessary parts or student labor if the jack requires an upgrade.

There will be no recurring monthly fees for any network connections or telephones. IT will continue to charge monthly fees for Cable TV and security cameras.

The proposal, which contains all the details, is available at http://www.it.mtu.edu/OIT/documents/telcom_funding_approved.pdf.

Contact CIO Walt Milligan at milligan@mtu.edu for further information.

Lean IT at Michigan Tech

Lean principles are generally well established and have been applied to manufacturing for quite some time. The idea is simple: identify and eliminate areas of waste that lead to poor service for customers. Within Michigan Tech IT, we’ve begun to apply those principles to our work. Though the changes are small, they’ve made a large impact in how we do daily business, and they’re sparking a cultural change within our organization.

Group-ups

The Services Team is using daily Group-up meetings to increase awareness among staff and solve problems. “Our morning huddle brings everyone together for 15 minutes to discuss what is most important, most time-sensitive, and most technically problematic,” says David Kent, IT Services Director. One of the main objectives of the meetings is to help each other solve problems or help with time-sensitive commitments. “Threats to projects and deadlines are identified quickly, and often resolved on the spot, because the entire team is present,” says Kent.

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The morning huddle fosters a more efficient and open, collaborative attitude within the team. “Since we’ve started having the group-ups, our ticket count has decreased significantly, and we’re continuing to set record lows on a regular basis.  Everything that is important to our group is on the whiteboard for all to see, and each member is able to make updates as needed.  We definitely accomplish more with less because we focus on what is on the board.”

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Project Board (Cadence Board)

For the past month, the Enterprise Application Services group has been using a Cadence Board for their Web Focus Project. The low-tech and flexible visualization tool giving visibility to the current workflow and progress and informs the team of each other’s work progress. The board displays planned work, unplanned work, high level milestones, a parking lot (for future items) and a rolling two-week work plan. The team meets three times a week for status updates and discussion.

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“The board helps us keep the project moving and more easily keep track of its different elements,” says Emmett Golde, EAS Director. “It’s increased communication between team members, and because it’s so visual, you can immediately see who’s doing what and where they’re at in a particular process. Tasks are shown in small enough pieces so that we can see where the workload is distributed. It shows us if a particular team member is overloaded.”

Process Mapping for a Kaizen Event

When Ashley Sudderth, Chief Information Compliance Officer, met with the Office of Continuous Improvement on March 23, it was to discuss IT’s Procurement and Deployment process for new machines. “It was an area that generated a lot of help desk tickets and was one we knew needed improvement,” said Ashley. “We met with the Office and completed a process map of the P&D process. They helped us examine the process for where we could benefit from a Kaizen event… and we chose the service desk workflow for task management.”

Through the mapping process other small changes were identified that had a big impact in addition to the Kaizen event. “It’s been very helpful to have outside input from actual customers who also understand the Lean Process,” said Angie Hebert, Sr. Help Desk Consultant, a member of the process mapping team. “One of the things customers were unsure of was what software would be included on their machines at delivery. We took that feedback and set up a web page that gives them a full list of what software they will receive as a standard installation. It was just one of the things that we might not have considered had we not gone through this process.”

One of the deliverables: a new computer checklist which now accompanies each new deployment.
One of the deliverables produced as a result of process mapping: a computer checklist which now accompanies each new deployment.

Though the team is still in the process mapping stage, they’ve already we’ve seen major benefits. “Our team members have an increased knowledge of the parts and pieces in the deployment process from procurement to the actual builds,” says Hebert. “We’ve seen more care and diligence in work, resulting in faster, better builds in deployment.”

Josh Olson, Chief Technology Officer, is embracing the shift to Lean IT. “As an organization, we want to be open to change in our processes and methods and commit to continuous and ongoing improvement,” he says. “Since we’ve started incorporating Lean thinking into our daily work, we’ve seen measurable improvement. The culture is changing. We’re changing. Lean IT is improving the way we provide services to our customers.”

IT Central Storage downtime – Sunday May 10

Summary

  • Campus Storage will be down Sunday May 10, 2015 from 6 AM – 9 AM
  • Services using central storage will be down as well (ie. web pages, Banner, BanWeb, etc)
  • Computers will be remotely shutdown prior to 6 AM — Close all files and logoff when you leave work Friday
  • User Services staff will be working Sunday 8 AM – 5 PM, and available at 487-1111 or it-help@mtu.edu for any issues

Details

It is necessary to upgrade the software that runs central storage for campus. This upgrade includes bug fixes as well as security patches. This upgrade will cause a campus wide downtime in storage and services.

The upgrade is planned for Sunday May 10, with downtime starting at 6 AM and restoration of service by 9 AM. Prior to 6 AM, your PC will be forced to shutdown so that no files are open while the upgrade takes place. It is recommended that you shutdown your computer when you leave work on Friday.

User Services staff will be in from 8 AM – 5 PM Sunday to assist with any issues. You can call 487-1111 or email it-help@mtu.edu.

If you have any questions regarding this outage, please contact it-help@mtu.edu

Scheduled Power Outage

Facilities Management has planned a power outage for Wednesday, May 6, 2015 and Thursday, May 7, 2015.  In order to protect IT network resources and computers, IT will be shutting down computers, networks, and phones in the following buildings beginning at 5 PM.

Please plan to log out and exit the buildings prior to 5:00 PM.  We also recommend you turn off copiers and printers.

The following buildings are affected by this outage both Wednesday and Thursday nights:

  • Rekhi
  • Fisher
  • Hamar House
  • Dillman
  • Forestry
  • M&M (UG and GR sides)
  • ME-EM
  • ROTC
  • Academic Office Building
  • Alumni House

The following buildings have a scheduled outage for Thursday only:

  • EERC
  • Wadsworth
  • Rozsa
  • Walker
  • McNair

If you have any questions, please contact IT Help: it-help@mtu.edu or 906-487-1111.

Email Lists Moving to Google Groups

In order to standardize and reduce the variability of email lists, Michigan Tech IT is transitioning all email lists to Google Groups.

With Google Groups you can:

  • Send a meeting invite to a group of people that will show up in their Google calendars
  • Share Google Docs out to Google Groups
  • If the membership of your Google Group changes, any file shares and meeting invites will update automatically.
  • Group administrators (list owners) will have easier web-based list management and Group members will have more subscription options (daily digest, abridged email, no email), all from one website: https://groups.google.com/a/mtu.edu/

In the coming weeks we will contact list owners directly when we are ready to transition their list(s) to Google Groups.

A little background on the switch:

Email lists at Michigan Tech are currently handled by one of three distinct list processing programs. By switching to Google Groups from our current programs (Sympa and MailMan), Michigan Tech users will have more functionality with their email lists, as well as eliminate the need for IT to manage multiple list programs.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the move to Google Groups, please contact IT Help at it-help@mtu.edu or 906-487-1111.

 

Protecting your identity – BCBSM breach

By now, many of you have heard of the data breach at Anthem, which may have also leaked data of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) members.  While BCBSM is still investigating what member data has been breached, we do know that Anthem stored data on BCBSM members who received health care in a number of states outside of Michigan.  The data accessed includes names, date of birth, member ID/social security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, emails addresses, and employment information.

Though the investigation as to the extent of the exposure of BCBSM data is still underway, there are a number of steps that all users should take:

  • Monitor you current accounts for any unusual activity.  Data from the breach may be used to try to answer security questions and access your accounts.
  • Sign up for fraud alerts with each of the three major credit bureaus.  This will notify potential credit grantors to verify your identity before extending credit.  This will stay on your account for 90 days and will allow time for BCBSM to complete their investigation.
  • Obtain a current copy of your credit report. You can receive a free copy of your credit report once every 12 months at: https://www.annualcreditreport.com.
  • Be aware of unexpected changes to your credit report or credit score.  Many sites will monitor your credit but may charge a fee.  CreditKarma is a well-respected free site for monitoring your credit score and can be found at: https://www.creditkarma.com.
  • Be suspicious of any email related to the breach that asks you to give personal information.  Anthem will be directly notifying all impacted members via postal mail and will advise you on the next steps to take.  Many cyber criminals are using the incident to target potential members with phishing attempts. If you receive an email that appears to be from Anthem and contains a “click here” link for credit monitoring, it is a scam!
    DO NOT click on any links in an email appearing to be from Anthem.

    • DO NOT reply to the email or reach out to the senders in any way
    • DO NOT supply any information on the website that may open if you do click on a link.
    • DO NOT open any attachments that arrive with email.
  • If you have received heath care services in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Virginia or Wisconsin, you should contact Anthem at 1-877-263-7995 or visit their website: http://www.anthemfacts.com/.

Online security while traveling – read the latest issue of OUCH!

The SANS Institute has released its February issue of OUCH!, a monthly security newsletter. This month’s issue covers how to securely stay online and get work done while traveling.  With more and more people connecting while on the road, this is the perfect time to cover how to do it securely.  We encourage you to download and share OUCH! with others.

English Version (PDF)
http://www.securingthehuman.org/newsletters/ouch/issues/OUCH-201502_en.pdf

Translations & Archives
http://www.securingthehuman.org/ouch