Information Technology Fall 2010 Update
Technology Across Campus
The campus bandwidth has been increased from 43Mbps to 100Mbps. We were able to secure the additional bandwidth through our provider, Illinois Century Network. They provide high speed telecommunications networks for Illinois schools, institutions of higher education, libraries, museums, research institutions, state agencies, local government, and other local entities that provide services to Illinois citizens.
Upgrades to the Network Infrastructure
No one thinks about how your Internet connection is delivered to your building and desktop…it just magically appears, kind of like electricity….it is there for us to use when we need it. The “infrastructure” of the network consists of many wires and pieces of equipment that reside centrally in the server room and in closets distributed throughout the campus. These components of the network must be replaced and maintained and this summer and fall, there will be several upgrades to equipment which will improve the delivery of the Internet and our local network, wired and wireless, to your desktops and laptops.
Virtualization of Servers
Over the past year, Millikin has consolidated 26 servers in our data center by "virtualizing" them onto two physical servers. This "virtual" technology allows us to run more services on less hardware, thereby reducing the amount of equipment necessary to power and maintain. In addition, power savings are being realized as the cooling unit for the data center uses less energy to maintain the proper temperature.
New “Virtual Thin Clients”
All the computers on the first floor of ADM/Scovill (110 units) and Tabor Lab (33units) in Shilling have been replaced with Sun Ray Clients which access their images from central servers. These clients provide the same look and feel of a desktop computer. There are several advantages in using these clients instead of desktop computers.
1. They use 4 watts of power versus 100 watts
2. The software is managed centrally, allowing software to be added or upgraded to all the clients without taking down a lab to re-master the image
3. The clients will not need to be replaced for eight to ten years, only the servers will need to be upgraded with software and/or hardware
Re-distribution of ADM/Scovill Computers
The 110 computers from ADM/Scovill are being re-distributed across campus to what had been known as “orphan labs and workstations”. These “orphans” were purchased with grant or department dollars and were not officially on the replacement cycle budget and some were over eight and nine years old.
Replacement Computers for Employees
New iMacs were purchased for twelve faculty this summer and the two-year old computers from Tabor Lab in Shilling were distributed to 33 employees to replace equipment that was over six years old.
Increased Wireless Network Access Across Campus
Full wireless access has been added to some buildings and will continue to be added through the fall semester. These buildings will have full wireless coverage by the end of the calendar year:
1. Dolson Hall (already done)
2. Perkinson Music Center
6. Upgrade to New Halls
7. Upgrade to Hessler
Additions and Changes to Media Classrooms
A “trackview” camera system was installed in ADM/Scovill 207 and will be added to ADM/Scovill 212, along with recording capability. The trackview system allows the instructor to move freely at the front of the classroom while the camera tracks their location and zooms in on their activity, such as using the whiteboard, the computer, or moving back and forth. That will provide faculty access to two classrooms with recording capability. Projectors were replaced in LTSC 001 and 112 and ADM/Scovill 109. Most projectors on campus are now networked which provides the ability to control them centrally.
Stock Ticker and LCDs in ADM/Scovill
Thanks to the Tabor School of Business in ADM/Scovill, there is now a “stock ticker” and two programmable 46” LCDs that display information which comes directly from the Internet, RSS feeds, or Millikin originated content.
Microsoft Office 2007
The campus has been updated over the last year to Office 2007, all labs now contain version 2007 and any employees that still needs to have their Office version updated on their Millikin computer should contact the help desk 362.6488.
Microsoft Software for Employee Owned Computers
Microsoft Office 2010 for PCs and Office 2008 for Macs is now available for employees for their home computer. Also available are copies of Windows 7. To obtain disks with the software, visit the Millikin IT website, click on Employee Support and Software FAQs. You will pay $9.95 for each full copy which can be installed on your home computer.
Antivirus Software Replacement – Free for Personal Use
New anti-virus software from Microsoft was installed campus-wide in early summer replacing McAfee. The enterprise version we are using on all servers is named Forefront and is providing outstanding coverage. We encourage the use of the free Microsoft Essentials solution for students and employees for their personal computers.
To download Microsoft Essentials anti-virus software, go to:
The online application process is expanding to graduate level programs. The ability to email directly from the advisee/observer lists has been added. Critical assessment data has been integrated into Banner for the Education Department. The ISBN information has been fully integrated into the MuOnline pages for students to access at registration. MuOnline has links directly to our Follett Bookstore and students are able to add books to a shopping cart and pay online.
Revised Information Technology Website
Check out the revised IT website at http://www.millikin.edu/it. We have added many links and pages with information for students and employees with FAQs, “How to’s”, wireless access, software, labs, media, phones, copy/print services, and mailroom.
Look here to find links to tutorials and articles for all versions of Microsoft Office for PC and Mac. The resources are extensive and categorized into easily identifiable functions.
myMILLIKIN…..Continues to Evolve
Millikin’s portal, myMILLIKIN, is always going to be a “work in progress”. Please continue to use it to gain access to all your applications through a single sign-on and a way to communicate with the Millikin community. IT will be adding functionality throughout the year and welcomes your feedback and suggestions for additional features.
Touchnet Systems Marketplace was implemented over the summer. This software is used to design online stores and is fully integrated into our administrative system (Banner). Alumni and Development was instrumental in the acquisition of this software which will benefit the entire university community with its functionality.
Some of the features of Marketplace:
- Ability to create shopping cart type web pages with full color pictures of items
- Can be used to set up secure online and recurring payments for campaigns
- Ablility to take reservations for events and collect payment
- Ability to take credit/debit card transactions and ACH payments (virtual checks)