Who is Cortana and Why Am I Receiving “Your Daily Briefing” Emails?

Summary: Office 365 users recently began receiving daily Cortana emails. In this article we will explain what these email are, what Cortana can do, and how you can disable it if you choose to.

Who is Cortana?

Cortana is Microsoft’s Artificial Intelligence (AI), promoting it as a personal productivity assistant to help you save time and focus on what matters most. Cortana powers their entire secure cloud, which includes Office 365. Cortana is voice activated.

Why is Cortana Emailing Me?

Your Daily Briefing email is sent to help you stay in control of your calendar and be more intentional with your day. Cortana learns when you get to work and will send the email based upon what it predicts is the start of your work day.

What can Cortana do for me?

Cortana can be found by clicking start and typing “Cortana”, it will ask you to login using your email account. Some of the things that Cortana can do for you:

      • Join a meeting in Microsoft Teams or find out who your next meeting is with
      • Manage your calendar and keep your schedule up to date
      • Create and Manage Lists
      • Set reminders and alarms
      • Open apps on your computer

Not receiving Cortana Emails?

Cortana is data driven, the more data it has the better to predict your needs. If you are not receiving the Daily Briefing emails, not to worry, Cortana just doesn’t have enough data to send them. You may also not be subscribed.

How can I unsubscribe, subscribe or find out if my Cortana is active?

If you do not want to receive Cortana emails, look in the footer of the Daily Briefing email, there you will find an “unsubscribe” button.

To verify if your Cortana is active or to change your subscription. While logged into your Office 365 account, you can go to https://cortana.office.com and change your subscription at any time. 

If you would like to learn more about what Cortana can do for you, please visit the Cortana LinkedIn Learning playlist. You can also search in LinkedIn Learning to find more in-depth tutorials.

Apple iOS14 Release Information

Apple released the iOS14 update, with many new features for iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, iWatch). There has been a lot of confusion about one of the features as they haven’t advertised it well. A new default feature in iOS14 uses a private address when you join a Wi-Fi network. You would have a different private address for each Wi-Fi network that you would connect to. This is an important safety feature especially on public Wi-Fi networks.

We were under the impression that this private address would change every 24 hours, ultimately causing you to have to re-register on Widener’s network . After a full week of testing and working with technical support, we were able to determine that this feature will function on Widener’s Campus Wi-Fi.

The only change with this feature being ENABLED would be that you now have to register your device on each network. This would mostly affect the student population who travel from the residence halls (“wu-secure-resnet”) to the academic buildings (“wu-secure”).

You have the ability to disable this feature. Follow the directions below:

Turn private address off or on for a network

You can stop or resume using a private address with any network. For better privacy, leave the setting on for all networks that support it.

iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

  1. Open the Settings app, then tap Wi-Fi.
  2. Tap the information button next to a network.
  3. Tap Private Address. If your device joined the network without using a private address, a privacy warning explains why.
    1. Uncheck the Private Address.

Apple Watch

  1. Open the Settings app, then tap Wi-Fi.
  2. Tap the name of the network you joined. If you haven’t joined the network yet, swipe left on its name and tap more .
  3. Tap Private Address.
    1. Uncheck the Private Address.

 

Main Campus Residence Hall “Xfinity on Campus”

Due to a major shift to streaming technologies, as of July 1st, ITS will be taking on the responsibilities to provide cable TV to the Main Campus Residence Halls. Our Operations Department has done an outstanding job in the past, dealing with the logistical nightmare of handling over 1000 coax cables, remote controls, and set top boxes. We are excited to announce a new service that eliminates all of that!

XFINITY ON CAMPUS™

LIVE AND ON-DEMAND STREAMING TV AND DVR POWERED BY COMCAST

XFINITY On Campus™ is a service from Comcast enabling students to watch and record live television or to watch on-demand content directly in a web browser or mobile device with the Xfinity Stream app. The service is provided free as part of Widener University Main Campus Residence Life. For Television Sets, students must purchase a Roku player, from an authorized dealer, listed in details below.

Roku devices must connect to the wu-open-game-stream WiFi network! All other devices can access this service on the wu-secure and wu-secure-resnet WiFi networks.

KEY FEATURES

  • Watch over one hundred HD television channels with searchable program guide.
  • Twenty hours of Comcast DVR. Schedule recording of up to two programs simultaneously and then play them back at any time. Recorded shows can optionally be downloaded to watch off-campus or entirely off-line.
  • Watch thousands of XFINITY On-Demand programs at any time.
  • Optional premium upgrades to add channels, premium networks (including HBO, NFL RedZone and more), sports packages, and international programming.
  • TV Go / TV Everywhere supported for viewing when on-line but NOT on the campus network.
  • Direct access to Comcast to report problems and get help via the Comcast XFINTY on Campus™ portal.

ELIGIBILITY

XFINITY On Campus™ is available to officially enrolled Widener University Main Campus Housing residents only. There are no fees or complicated registration steps required to use the service. Your computer or mobile device must be connected to the Widener Main Campus network to use most features.

Minimum Requirements

  • Exclusively for residents of Widener University Main Campus Housing.
  • Widener user ID and password
  • Active connection on the campus network (wired or wireless)
  • Current versions of Windows and Mac OS X Operating System
  • Current versions of Apple iOS and Android devices
  • Current versions of select Kindle Fire devices
  • Roku Player (or Roku enabled smart TV) to watch on a television set

For more information visit MyWidener and search for Cable TV.

Comcast also provides more information at https://support.xfinityoncampus.com/hc/en-us.

If you are having problems, please contact the ITS Help Desk at (610)499-1047 or submit a quick ticket

 

PHISHING Awareness: [EXTERNAL:] Email Subject Tagging

Phishing is among the top security concerns for Information Technology. Personal identifiable information, the primary target of phishing attempts, falling into the wrong hands can cause both financial and reputation damage to our university, students and its employees. Phishing attacks are often launched by including malicious attachments or links in email. When recipients open these malicious attachments or click on the links, it can spark an attack. Most email scams begin with messages from an external email system.

As part of Widener University’s effort to reduce phishing and other email scams and spoofing, these external email messages will now receive an [External:] tag in the message subject. [External:] email tagging makes it as easy as possible for you to recognize phishing attempts wherever you can.

Avoid being scammed

The best defense to avoid being scammed is to be suspicious of any message asking for sensitive information. If the message seems off, it probably is. Trust your instincts. Phishing attempts can be clever, but they’re easy to avoid if you know the signs.

What is [External:] tagging and how does it work?

Most email scams begin with messages from a non-Widener (external) email system. When tagging is enabled these external email messages will now receive an [EXTERNAL:] tag in the message subject. Many safe and legitimate email messages come from external email systems. The [EXTERNAL:] tag does not mean the message is a scam or malicious, only that recipients should take caution and read carefully. All email originating from outside the university, except for approved services, will be tagged with this [EXTERNAL:] message. See sample below:

What should I do when I see an [External:] email?

Its important to note that an email message with this warning does not necessarily mean the email is malicious, only that the recipient should take caution before clicking any links or attachments included within the email. The [EXTERNAL:] tag means you need to stop and think about this email:

  • Is it from a sender you know?
  • Were you expecting the email?
  • Verify with your friend or co-worker over the phone if you are unsure or if the email seems a bit off.
  • If there is a link in the message, Don’t click it! Instead, hover over the link to verify it is legitimate, or manually enter the known good URL into your browser.
  • Does the message make sense?
  • If you are concerned and unsure, send the message to Phish@widener.edu

Note: A legitimate message would not ask you to provide your credentials to maintain your account access.

Novell (OES) Retiring

 

Starting July 1st, Novell (OES) file and print sharing, more commonly called J drive or L drive,  will no longer be available.  For those who have not yet migrated to Active Directory (who log in to your computer via “computer logon only”),  ITS has come up with a list of questions to help you log into your computer, once we are back on campus.  Please review the questions below, and if you are still having difficulties logging in, please contact the HelpDesk.

Q: How do I login? 

At the OES prompt instead of logging in through OES you will choose computer only logon under the boxes for your username and password.  *If you changed your email password during the time you were away from campus you must use your old password to login.  Please see this link for directions. 

Q: Why won’t my new password work? 

If you changed your email (network) password while out of the office and you haven’t been migrated to Active Directory yet, the local password on your workstation did not change. You will need to enter your old email password.  If you do not remember your old email password please call the HelpDesk at x1047.  

Q: Can I still access my network drives? 

No, access to network drives will not be available.  All departmental data was migrated to  OneDrive and should be accessed through the OneDrive App in Office 365. 

Q: How do I print?  My printer won’t work anymore. 

Your old network printer is no longer available In order to print, you must install your printer again from the new print server.  Instructions to do so are available below,  or you can open a QuickTicket for assistance. 


Q: How do I remove or can I remove my printers that no longer work? 

You can remove printers that no longer work by going to your printer list and first, deselect the checkbox next to “Let Windows manage my default printer”.  Next, select the ‘<printername>on IPP://gutenberg.widener.edu’ device, click on it, then click on ‘remove device’. Confirm the deletion.  Be careful not to delete the printer with an ENZO name in it. 

Q: How can I get my computer updated to be on Active Directory? 

Once we are back on campus we will resume migrating computers to Active Directory. If you have returned to campus please open a QuickTicket to request an appointment to have your computer migrated. 

Introducing the new ITS HelpDesk QuickTicket

With the move to a new platform, the new HelpDesk QuickTicket comes with many improvements.  The new site will be  accessible from the same link you know at quickticket.widener.edu.  QuickTicket will be hosted on Microsoft Forms.  With this new site we are able to perform additional tasks on the back-end.  One task is we are able to assign incident tickets directly to the team responsible for a faster resolution.  This platform is mobile friendly.  Below is a the comparison between the new and old sites.  (Click image to enlarge)


Click image to enlarge

Wired & Wireless – Device Registration

Get connected to Widener’s network. For security reasons, Widener University has implemented a solution to protect your electronic devices from other devices that might not be secure. Every device you connect to the Wireless Network or Residence Hall Wired Network must be registered for compliance purposes.

Steps to register your device
  • Connect to the wireless SSID “wudorm” or “widener”, if you choose to connect via Ethernet cable you will need to put in a port request. (http://portrequest.widener.edu)
  • Open your internet browser and try to go to a website such as yahoo.com.
  • Follow the on screen instructions to register your device.
Device Registration Requirement Information:
  • All Microsoft Windows based Desktops and Laptops (Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10) are required to have up to date operating system patches (Windows Updates) and an up to date Anti-Virus program (free or subscription) not provided from the University. A persistent agent is required to be downloaded and installed in order to stay in compliance on the network. It will prompt you for your Widener Login Username and password, then it will scan for your operating system patches and verify an up to date Anti-Virus.
  • Phones & Apple Products (MacBook, iMac, iPad, iPhone), Non-Windows Tablets, eReaders will only require your Widener Login username and password to register on the network.
  • Most Gaming Devices (PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo products), Smart TV’s, and Streaming Devices (Apple TV, Amazon Firestick/TV, Echo, Roku) will be automatically registered on the network. Please connect them via ethernet cable or on the wireless SSID “WUDorm” and they will take up to 15 minutes to move from the registration network to the production network. If you still have issues connecting after patiently waiting, please reboot your device and see if it properly connects. If it still does not connect, please locate your MAC address for your device and open a support ticket by contacting the ITS HelpDesk at 610-499-1047 OR Submit a support ticket at http://QUICKticket.widener.edu

 *PLEASE NOTE: Wireless printing in the residence halls is allowed, but we recommend securing them with a passcode to print (see your printer manufacturers’ instructions to setup). Otherwise; connect your printer via usb cable. CHROMECAST is designed to work in a home environment and given the size and complexity of our network, it will NOT work on Widener’s Network. WE DO NOT ALLOW PERSONAL WIRELESS ROUTERS ON WIDENER’S NETWORK. Not all  SMART PLUGS AND LIGHTS are designed for enterprise network environments; therefore they may not work properly on our network. But we will work with you to get these devices securely on the network if possible.

Reporting Wireless Issues of registered devices:

We are always looking to improve our wireless network and with your help, we can make it better. In order to fix the issue, we need to know about it. Now you can quickly report the issue to us.

By going to My.Widener.edu and searching WiFi, you will find the link to FixMyWiFi.widener.edu where you can submit a ticket reporting the issue directly to the group that manages this environment. We want to make your wireless experience an enjoyable one, not a stressful one.

*For additional assistance, please visit the Student Technology Support Center. The Student Technology Support Center (STSC) is a walk-in support center where students can go for assistance with their computers and hand-held devices. The STSC is now located on the main floor of the Wolfgram Memorial Library on the Chester Campus. You may also visit the ITS HelpDesk located on the 2nd floor of Academic Center North (ACN) Monday through Friday 8am to 5pm excluding holidays.

myWidener – Shedding Some Light

As we begin our journey with myWidener, let us share a list of some great questions we received over the last couple of days. There are only 15 but we expect them to help shed some light on some of the features of the site. Given our  timely deployment of myWidener, some features have not been fully built out, but expect to finish them soon.

 

Q1: Why does myWidener ask for my location and request to show notifications?

A1: myWidener uses your location to set your device to the correct campus or notify you of an event that may be happening on the campus near your vicinity.

Q2: What do I need to know if I block myWidener from my location?

A2: myWidener will not be able to place you in the correct Campus. By default, the site will assign you to the Chester campus. You will need to go into your profile preferences and select your default campus or manually select it every time.

Q3: Does myWidener track me?

A3: No, myWidener uses geolocation only for placing you on the correct campus and providing you with an update on events that may be happening in your area.

Q4: Why do I keep getting placed on the Chester campus?

A4: You may be placed on the wrong campus because you denied myWidener of your location, or the system could not determine your location. We recommend that you go into your profile settings and set your default campus.

Q5: How can I change my role or campus?

A5: You can manually change your role at any time by selecting the down arrow next to the blue search button on the site.

Q6: How can I lock myself to a campus?

A6: You can go into the settings and set your default campus. There are three; Chester, Delaware, and Harrisburg.

Q7: I can’t find something I am searching for, what should I do?

A7: First, check to make sure you are set to the correct role and campus. You can see this by selecting the down arrow next to the blue search button on the site. Your role and campus should be checked. If they are incorrect, check the one that match you. If they are correct, please send us feedback (click your profile name, and click “Send Feedback”). myWidener is intended to be a central location for students, faculty, and staff to gain access to a broad range of information and services.

Q8: How can I add my personal favorites?

A8: Click on the “star” in the bottom right corner of the task. This task will now appear up in your myWidener favorites.

Q9: How do I create my own personal bookmarks?

A9: Check out this short video to see how it is done.

Q10: How do I change my settings to have my tasks open in a new tab?

A10: Click on your profile name and click Preferences. Check “Always open tasks in new tab/window” and click Save.

Q11: What does the “hamburger menu” () mean?

A11: The “hamburger menu” (displayed as ) is what the collapsed menu icon on websites are called. This menu type is commonly seen on the top right or left on websites especially when viewed on a mobile device.

Q12: What is a task?

A12: A task is a single instruction you may complete on myWidener.

Q13: What is a task center?

A13: A task center is a group of related tasks within the same topic.

Q14: What does the “i” mean on a task or task center on the myWidener site?
A14: Clicking on the “i” provides more information about this task. This page is what we call the “Task Description Page” or TDP.

Q15: What is the Task Description Page (TDP) used for?

A15: This is a page where the owner of the task can provide more information and instructions for the task. It shows you the contact/owner of the task and any announcements the task is or was promoting. The task itself can be launched from this page either by clicking the task title or clicking the “Launch Task” button at the top right of the page.

 

Extra! Extra! myWidener is here! Search. Click. Done.

Today we officially say goodbye to CampusCruiser and move on to myWidener. We hope you agree that the new site makes it easier to find what you need quickly.

MyWidener treats every resource you access as a task, whether it’s a link to a web form, site, or app. While we organized those tasks into logical groupings, like “Library Resources” or “Employee Services,” the most powerful way to use myWidener is simply search for the specific task you’re looking for. Wondering what’s on the menu at the Pride Cafe? Just search for “menu.” Once you’ve found a task you use regularly, click or touch the star in the task’s button. It’ll be added to your favorites, which show up at the top of your window every time you log in.

We wanted to thank our university colleagues for their support through all of the long hours with helping us build out these new sites. Just a little fun info we wanted to share, the following has been built out for myWidener:

  • 187 tasks in 32 task centers
  • 44 public office web sites
  • 20 internal SharePoint web sites

Have a question? Please email us at cruisercloseout@widener.edu. If you have feedback on myWidener, please send us a note by selecting the feedback option under your name (or the hamburger icon on your mobile device), then select “Send Feedback.” We welcome your questions, feedback and support.

What will happen after Campus Cruiser’s sunset

We know that the community is eager for new information about the Campus Cruiser closeout process. Due to Cruiser’s upcoming disappearance, we have had to make a series of quick decisions. The good news is that we are able to consider a lot of options in the weeks before the holiday break, and now we’d like to share more information with you about our progress.

Announcing MyWidener

ITS is already constructing the platform to replace Campus Cruiser. Over the next two months, a sophisticated, mobile-friendly website will emerge, which we will call MyWidener. The essential features of Cruiser (committees, clubs, organizations, WebAdvisor, etc.), will all be available through this single point of access

MyWidener will use keyword searches to navigate and access services directly. While the new site is under construction, you may be interested to see a public version using the same software at University of Michigan: http://maizelink.umich.edu. (Note: everything you see there is just a link to web sites and applications that UMich uses. Our links will be tools that are specific to Widener, e.g. StudentPlanning, WebAdvisor, Office365, etc. The underlying software, rSmart OneCampus, doesn’t provide us with any of the applications or modules, it simply allows us a better way to find and access our own information.)

For departments that currently use Cruiser to publish websites, we have good solutions to offer as well. Members of the Cruiser Closeout team will be reaching out to those departments to coordinate.

In the meantime…

Campus Cruiser is still running for now. You may continue to use it to access administrative services, such as time sheets. Moving our essential services over to MyWidener is a top priority, and we do have a backup plan if we lose access to Campus Cruiser prior to the expected final shutdown in March.

As always, the best way to follow up to this message with questions or comments is to email cruisercloseout@widener.edu. ITS staff also continues to make updates to the Cruiser Closeout FAQ.

A few words about process

ITS is relying on the advice and feedback of Faculty Council TIRC and other stakeholders as we make changes. Even so, the urgency of this project has required us to make some of our decisions faster and with less input than we prefer. Thank you for your cooperation as we’ve worked through this challenging situation. We are also grateful for all the work you have done to move/manage your own information on extremely short notice.

Widener will be in a much better situation once this migration is complete.