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Welcome back to campus for the fall term! As usual in the world of technology, there are lots of new things to report:

College email. Earlier this summer, the college finished its move to the consolidated Exchange server hosted by the university. We were one of the first colleges to join up, and over the next year we will see the rest of the university added to this single email and calendaring system (a move which will certainly simplify scheduling meetings outside our college). If you were gone for part of the summer, or have any questions about your email, please contact the Helpdesk.

Small-format printing for students. As part of our efforts to streamline operations for students, we have partnered with the campus Open Access Computer Labs (OAL) to merge the college-provided print quotas and queues with the printing systems operated by OAL and available all across campus. This change also adds a number of new features, including scanning, copying, mobile printing, email-based printing, and the ability to print from anywhere and choose your printer later. More details are available here: https://goo.gl/jiWdR3  

Classroom technology. We have partnered with campus IT to upgrade a number of classrooms to university standards over the past two semesters. This semester, we are continuing that progress. Starting Monday podium computers in all classrooms in Langford and Francis will look and behave the same. We will continue to improve the A/V hardware in our buildings to meet the same standards; a number of spaces are scheduled for upgrades during the fall semester. Additionally, you will notice new collaboration technology scattered throughout the Langford building—we are currently evaluating these tools for their suitability within the college. We really need your feedback!

Network upgrades. Our building’s network connection to campus was given a significant upgrade this summer, and is now more reliable and capable than ever. This will become increasingly obvious in the C building over the next semester, as older components are upgraded to take advantage of the new infrastructure. FYI:                the greenspace in front of Langford now has Wifi (broadcasting from the top of our building)!

New staff in ITS. We have had some staffing changes in ITS since January. Laura Melton is our newest employee and I’m sure you will be seeing a lot of her over the coming months. Those of you located in the Francis building might have noticed that we opened a remote Helpdesk location on the first floor. Stop by and say hi!

If you experience any problems or unexpected IT issues, please contact the Helpdesk at 862-8584, in person at A122, or just email helpdesk@arch.tamu.edu to open a ticket. Given all the changes that we’ve seen over the summer, some growing pains are expected. We’ll need your help to quickly identify and resolve any issues as they arise.

My door is always open if you have any questions or comments about these changes, or any other technology-related matter. Have a great fall term!

 

--

Jason L. Vaughn  |  Helpdesk Manager

College of Architecture | Texas A&M University

 

TAMU MS 3137 | College Station, TX 77843

Tel. 979.862.8584 | Vaughn@arch.tamu.edu

 

ITS Wiki | http://helpdesk.arch.tamu.edu

An issue with a server in the college authentication system caused the college mail servers to be inaccessible for several hours this morning (Sunday, May 10). The authentication system was not processing login requests and had to be restarted. During this time, you may have noticed you were unable to access the mail server to check your mail. 

 

The issue was identified at 10:25am and resolved by 11:02am. Although the incident prevented access to your mailbox, any mail sent to you during that time frame will have been delivered as normal. No data was lost as a consequence of this issue. 

 

We we apologize for the interruption; if you notice any further issues, please call the Helpdesk at (979) 862-8584. Although we are closed today, we are actively checking voicemail and the information will be routed to the appropriate staff. As always, an email to helpdesk@arch.tamu.edu will open a ticket directly. 

Starting this morning around 7 am, power will be cut to all three building in the Langford Complex. 

Most of the college's computer infrastructure is now housed in the main campus data center in the Teague building, but there is one major exception: email. As a result, all access to college email servers (including web-based email at http://mail.arch.tamu.edu) is unavailable until power is restored to the building. During this time, all email messages sent to you have been queued on campus mail servers, and once our email system is available, it will be delivered. We do not have any reason to expect that any email will be lost during this event, but delivery of some messages will be significantly delayed. 

If you are working remotely over the holiday, you may have to come to campus to power your machine back on.

The Helpdesk is closed during the break, if you have an emergency, create an issue.  ITS will be monitoring it throughout the day.  Please be sure to include a cell or home number.

Enjoy the rest of your holiday!

UPDATE As of 4:15pm power has been restored to Langford. Email is now functioning normally, and you should start to see messages deliver to your inbox that have been help in queue over the past 10 hours. This process may take some time, and the messages will sometimes be delivered out of order, so please be patient. 

The College will re-open for normal business at 8am on Thursday, July 25.

ORIGINAL MSG Starting this morning around 6am, there was a power outage on campus that affected several buildings, including all three building in the Langford Complex (http://problem.tamu.edu/blog.php?sid=472874). TAMU Utilities responded quickly, and began repairs to damaged equipment to restore power. Currently, power is expected to be restored by 5pm CDT.

Most of the college's computer infrastructure is now housed in the main campus data center in the Teague building, but there is one major exception: email. As a result, all access to college email servers (including web-based email at http://mail.arch.tamu.edu) is unavailable until power is restored to the building. During this time, all email messages sent to you have been queued on campus mail servers, and once our email system is available, it will be delivered. We do not have any reason to expect that any email will be lost during this event, but delivery of some messages will be significantly delayed. 

The Helpdesk will re-open when the building regains power. Please continue to check the website for updates to this situation, and notify the Helpdesk if you continue to experience issues after the power has been restored. 

Email Phishing Warning

College Faculty & Staff,

 

By now, many of you may have received an email with the subject, "April Scheduled Maintenance Outage." The body of the message suggests you should "kindly follow the below link to complete your account upgrade."  Please understand that this message is a phishing attempt and was not legitimately sent by Texas A&M University or the College of Architecture.

A phishing email is an attempt to collect confidential information from Internet users, typically by sending an e-mail that looks as if it is from a legitimate organization and asks you to visit a site where you enter personal information. The data that is obtained is then usually used for illicit purposes.  You may safely disregard and delete the email.  More information about phishing attempts may be found in the following infographic:  goo.gl/gxrxRh

Here are a few useful hints to help you determine the validity of an email that may be a phishing attempt:

  • Receiving email from a suspicious source (or someone you don’t know)
  • Links in an email that take you to a website with which you have no affiliation
  • Spoofing popular websites or companies
  • Not addressing you by name
  • In this case, please do not click the link inside the phishing email. The email may be safely ignored and deleted.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact ITS in person in Langford A122, calling (979) 862-8584, or through email at helpdesk@arch.tamu.edu.

 

Regards,

Information Technology Services

SUMMARY:

* "Heartbleed" is a serious bug
* You should change passwords as a precaution
* You MUST change your COA password this week

DETAILS:

You have probably seen information about a computer bug called "Heartbleed" that has created a serious Internet security risk. In fact, TAMU central IT sent out an email on Friday afternoon that outlined the risk and impact on Texas A&M servers. You can review this information here: http://security.tamu.edu/protect_myself/Heartbleed_Bug.php

COA systems are secure: ITS patched our servers within 24 hours of the announcement. Unfortunately, since the Heartbleed bug existed for more than 2 years before it was discovered, the potential exists that the passwords you have used on COA websites have been compromised. As a precaution, we are expiring all COA passwords over the next week. You will receive a standard notification within the next few days that your password is expiring soon, and instructing you to use http://myaccount.arch.tamu.edu to change it.

We STRONGLY recommend that you create a completely new password at this time -- any password you have used on the Internet in the last 2 years is potentially compromised. You can find an infographic with tips on creating strong, easy-to-remember passwords here: http://goo.gl/f0cjLR | http://goo.gl/BdQrGH

Furthermore, even systems that were not affected by the Heartbleed bug (like NetID login, SSO, etc) CAN BE COMPROMISED if you used the same password on a compromised system. So if you had your COA password matching your NetID password (or your SSO password) you need to change both. The same rule applies to Facebook, Gmail, Yahoo, and any other internet service.

Finally, you should also consider how this bug affects other Internet websites you use. Facebook, Google, Dropbox, and many other sites were affected, and are recommending that you change your password on their site: http://goo.gl/JVAO0G. Remember that if you shared passwords between sites, you should change all of them.

If you have any concerns about this process, please stop by the ITS Helpdesk (Langford A122) or contact us at 862-8584 or helpdesk@arch.tamu.edu. We will be available all week to answer questions and assist you with the password reset process. If you want help with your mobile devices (phones, tablets, laptops) don't forget to bring them with you to campus.

A maintenance window for IT services will occur this Wednesday, December 18, from 8pm to midnight. This window will allow ITS staff to perform regular maintenance on college and research servers, including security patches and upgrades. During this time, various services will be unavailable, including:

  • email and calendaring
  • college-hosted websites
  • printing services
  • network licenses

If you experience any unexpected behavior following the maintenance window, please email helpdesk@arch.tamu.edu.

Information Technology Services

 

Contact Us

Submit an Issue

     CREATE NEW ISSUE

Call us

     (979) 862-8584

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     Langford A122  

Need to Print?

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Helpdesk Hours

 

MAY Interim 2015:May. 12 - June. 1
Mon. - Fri.8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sat.closed
Sun.closed

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