It’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month again!

Every year, the National Cyber Security Alliance designates the month of October to remind us: STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™  With phishing threats and online scams already in full swing, it’s more important than ever to stay alert and show #cyberpride.  This year, there are three main messages for the month:

  • Own IT.

    • Never Click and Tell: staying safe on social media
    • Update Privacy Settings on your phone and on social
    • Keep Tabs on Your Apps: best practices for apps on your devices
  • Secure IT.

    • Shake Up Your Passphrase Protocol: create strong, unique passphrases
    • Double Your Login Protection: turn on multi-factor authentication
    • Shop Safe Online: making sure your purchases are secure
    • Play Hard To Get With Strangers: how to spot and avoid phish
  • Protect IT.

    • If You Connect, You Must Protect: updating to the latest security software, web browser and operating systems
    • Stay Protected While Connected: Wi-Fi safety
    • If You Collect It, Protect It: keeping personal information safe

 

In the upcoming weeks, we’ll explore each of these these further.  The bad guys are always changing their tactics, and trying every way they can – phishing emails, ads on websites, even texts on our smartphones – to trick us.  Keeping up a layered defense is our best approach.

If you ever have a question about an email, please forward it to phish@widener.edu. You can also call the Helpdesk at x1047, or email at helpdesk@widener.edu. And be sure to follow us on Twitter at @WidenerISO. Happy October, and safe computing!

 

macOS Catalina Released

Hold off on upgrading – Apple’s latest macOS raises concerns.

Apple’s latest release, macOS Catalina (10.15), has what Apple admits are “major issues” and we have a variety of concerns. As with most OS releases, we strongly recommend that you wait and not upgrade your University-owned Mac. Information Technology Services cannot yet support Catalina on University-owned Macs until several issues have been resolved, followed by further testing. (As a general rule, waiting until the first set of OS updates are released allows Apple to fix initial stability problems and bugs before the OS even makes it to your machine.)

While there are some interesting new features in this OS, like SideCar, Catalyst, increased security, and Apple Arcade, there are a number of things that either just won’t work or will present problems.  Here’s the big ones we know so far:

Music Apps and the Death of iTunes

In macOS Catalina, Apple has done away with the iTunes app, splitting its features into three separate apps: Music, Podcasts, and TV (coming later this fall). If you do any kind of audio mixing or heavy music work using iTunes and third-party software, you will likely run into problems. The underlying XML database and associated XML file no longer exists to index a local music collection. This has “broken” a number of music tools, such as Traktor and Rekordbox.

Other Affected Software and Services

It’s not just music applications that are having issues.  A number of creative tools—including Apple Aperture, Microsoft Office 2011 and Adobe CS6—are experiencing issues. Network printing, along with local printing, may also stop working in the new environment.

SPSS Statistics will be affected by several changes in the new OS, some of which could cause it to stop working completely. Version 23 (and all versions prior) will not run at all. Increased data protections will block all versions of SPSS from accessing the following data sources: Documents, Downloads, Desktop, and any connected external disks (this includes USB drives). Mandatory notarized applications and the end of support for 32-bit applications (like the SPSS License Authorization Wizard) are other factors that need to be addressed.

Apple’s own ‘Reminders’ app can behave strangely if you have multiple devices. If you want reminders synced across your devices, they all need to be running the latest versions of their respective operating systems—for some reason there’s no mix and match of platforms. And it’s not just syncing that’s the issue, user data is being lost as well.

It’s a 64-bit Only World

Catalina also drops support for 32-bit applications. They just won’t run on this version of macOS. Most people can’t tell which apps are 32-bit and which are 64-bit. Even some 64-bit software may not be compatible with Catalina.

We recommend that you take note of any mission-critical software so you will have a list ready when the time comes to upgrade. Prior to upgrading in the future, if you are unsure your software will run in Catalina, you can submit a quick ticket with your software details so we can give you compatibility feedback.

Undoing a Hasty macOS Upgrade

There’s no easy way to undo the upgrade or simply roll it back. Reverting from Catalina to a previous version of macOS, is an inconvenient process that requires we take your computer, erase your hard drive, reimage it, reinstall software, and restore your data and/or reconnect your OneDrive. Of course, this means you won’t be able to use your computer while this is being done.

Once we are confident that Catalina will work well in our environment, ITS staff will be happy to assist with a safe and coherent upgrade process for our faculty and staff.

Welcome from Information Security

Welcome (and welcome back) to Widener!

It’s a new academic year, and internet threats are ready and waiting as usual. Students, faculty, and staff are all busy preparing for a great year of learning, but the bad guys are trying to sneak past our guard. Here are some of the old classic threats that are still in use:

  • Impersonation emails that look like they’re from someone on campus (“Are you available?” gift card scams)
  • Random offers of on- or off-campus jobs (especially involving exchanges of gift cards or money orders)
  • PDF files that are nothing but a link, or try to get you to “log in”
  • Office365 document shares that don’t look like Widener emails
  • Warnings or threats about your Widener email account being closed or locked out, or that it “needs to be verified”
  • Voicemails or faxes that are supposedly waiting on you
  • Screen pop-ups that try to get you to click something (even legit ads are dangerous)

Please remember to be very careful with email links, especially from addresses you don’t know. The bad guys can also paste a real name onto a fake email, so take care when using your phone – phones often don’t show the email address. And they love to hit you during your commute.

When an email asks you to click a link, it’s best if you initiate the reply using a fresh start. Contact the person or department the way you’re familiar with, or check on my.widener.edu for the correct campus link.

Any phishing, scam, questionable, or just plain weird emails should be sent to phish@widener.edu. We’ll gladly check whether it’s real or a scam.

Follow our blog here at itsnews.widener.edu – we post on all types of ITS issues. Follow on Twitter at @WidenerISO for security news and current issues. If you ever have a question about email, passwords, viruses, or computer security in general, feel free to call the Information Security Office at ext. 1044, or open a ticket at the HelpDesk (quickticket.widener.edu).

Thanks, and have a great year!

Welcome Students!

Over the summer, the ITS department (computer people) were busy updating technologies that will help you succeed. Visit and bookmark our blog itsnews.widener.edu, as new valuable information is frequently posted. Check out the latest below!

Five web links to help start your semester!

Wireless access

Email access

Getting started with Office 365

 FREE Office 2016 download

FREE access to LinkedIn Learning

Contact us with any questions or issues.

Submit a ticket! Go to QuickTicket.widener.edu

Call us!   (610) 499-1047

Visit the Student Technical Support Center (STSC)
Located on the Main Level of Wolfgram Library

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.

myCanvas Dashboard Favorites

You can now connect Canvas with myWidener !
Once your favorite courses are in Canvas, you can now have those classes appear in your myWidener Portal Dashboard.

Here’s How :

1. Access https://my.widener.edu now and upon login you will be prompted to “Authorize the Canvas Connector

2. Checkmark Do not show again* and Click Authorize.

3. You will then be directed to a Canvas User Approval Screen:

Verify the connection to the appropriate matched Canvas user found and click Authorize.

4. Locate the myCanvas Dashboard Favorites:
(Wait 5 mins) Then the next time you log into the myWidener Portal, your favorite (starred) Canvas courses should appear at the bottom of the myWidener Portal Dashboard.

Access DeAuthorization at any time under myWidener preferences.

Advanced Extra:
After completing the above steps, you can reorder your personal myWidener Main Dashboard Layout. To place “myCanvas Dashboard Favorites” to the top of your view, click the top left list-icon ( just under the logo) to reorder the dashboard sections and click [Save].

Getting Started :
Did you know, in the Canvas (learning management system) when you are enrolled in more than one Canvas course, you can customize the active courses you want to show in your Course list?

By clicking the star to the left any course in the Card View Dashboard this features your selected classes both on the Canvas Dashboard and makes them available to bind to and feature in the myWidener Portal.

 

Supporting Note :

There is no impact / penalty for Authorizing the Connector service even if you do not yet first have any Canvas courses favorited within the LMS; you will just see this display until you do.

Video Captioning Service- Now Available!

Our goal is a simple yet important one: Make instructional video content more accessible. A collaboration of TLT, Library, and Disability Services is working on this process for proposal submission, review, and selection. Limited funding for video captioning and transcription services has been granted for the upcoming academic year, so get your proposals ready!

Things you need to know:
  • The proposals are semester based. To be considered for 19/Fall courses, you will need to submit a proposal by August 8, 2019. Mid-semester proposal will be considered if funding permits.
  • Based on funding limitations, we cannot guarantee all proposals will be accepted. Priorities will be based on the content frequency (required over several semesters or across multiple courses), the number of students in the course(s), the quality of the audio/video (compliance with best practices of instructional video), etc. For more details, please see the scoring rubric.
  • Two-step review: Once proposals are accepted to move on to the next steps, faculty members will be provided a Cielo24 account along with steps and a checklist for pre-upload review. At that point, faculty will be able to upload their proposed video to the platform for final review (The video uploads will be in a queue for our authorization, on the Cielo24 platform).
Additional Considerations:
  • Our team will also provide support for faculty to better apply instructional videos in their teaching. For example,
    • TLT office will provide consultation on video editing and best video practices and tools.
    • Wolfgram Memorial Library will provide information about copyright, fair use, and existing alternate content that may be more recent or otherwise helpful, etc.

 

Here is the first step – submit your proposal through this link.

 

Also, please visit the Instructional Media and Video course on Canvas for more information on best practices, multimedia tools, and copyright and fair use practices.

Connect and Collaborate
Welcome to Microsoft Teams

It is inevitable that technology will change, sometimes faster than we can keep up with and sometimes not fast enough!

At some point, you may have heard ITS staff mention that GroupWise messenger (aka Novell messenger) would be retiring. On July 31st, GroupWise messenger will end its long reign and pass the crown to a new resource in our growing Office 365 arsenal – Microsoft Teams. Whether or not you currently use GroupWise messenger, we are excited for you to see the Teams application and learn how it can work for you! While Microsoft Teams has a multitude of functions, we will only focus on its chat feature during the initial roll out. ITS already scheduled some training dates so you can come learn more about Teams and how to use it. If you would like to register for training, please click here and choose the session that works best for you.

In addition to providing training, we have compiled an initial FAQ below; this FAQ will grow as more questions arise. We highly recommend subscribing to this blog to receive notifications when new information posts.

If you have a question or concern that is not addressed in the FAQ, please email the Client Success Team at itscs@widener.edu.

 

FAQ’s

Q:  Why are we moving from GroupWise to Teams? 

A:As you may have heard, we are moving away from Novell and the physical server maintenance it requires. Thus, moving towards the cloud-based chat option that Office 365 offers.

 
Q:  Why are we moving to Teams instead of Skype for Business? 

A:Skype for business is at its end of life, therefore we need to move to a more sustainable solution.

Q:  Can I access my saved GroupWise message history?

A:Yes, but only before July 31. You will be able to access your saved message history, provided you have that function enabled.

Q:  Can I export my contact list out of GroupWise messenger

A:No. You are not able to export contact lists out of GroupWise.

Q:  Can I edit names? 

A:No, but you can hover your cursor over a name to see their contact information, you can chat, email or call them through the internet (with or without video).

 Q:  How do we create a Team?  

A:Although the ability to create a team is enabled, we are requesting that you do not create any Teams at this time. If you need a Team created, please open a quick ticket and ITS will assist you in the creation. http://quickticket.widener.edu/

Q:  Will anyone be able to see my status? 

A:Yes. Others will be able to tell if you are available, busy or in a meeting by looking at the icon by your name. Know that this same information has always been available through the Outlook scheduling assistant in your calendar.

Q:  Can you import your contacts into Teams? 

A:No. The applications are from two separate providers, there is no ability to import contact from GroupWise into Teams. However, if you have contacts in Skype they will transfer over to Teams.

Q:  How do I chat with my colleagues? 

A:Choose the chat option from the menu on the left margin, then type the contacts name in the command bar, once their name appears select it and you can start your conversation with them.

Q:  How do I create a chat including multiple colleagues? 

A:Choose the chat option from the menu on the left margin, then select the icon at the top of the page next to the command bar that looks like a pen and paper, this will allow you to select multiple contacts to have a conversation with.

Q:  Can I block from receiving chats from another colleague? 

A:No, but there is an option to mute them and hide them. This selection is found by clicking on the ellipsis (three dots) next to the contact name. This brings up more options. If you use this feature, you can change the option by searching the contact, select the ellipsis and then change the setting back.

 

 

Office 365: Office 2016 download instructions

Office 2016 download instructions for PC or Mac!

Start this process on the computer you intend to install Office 2016!

1. Sign in to your Office 365/WUmail account.
2. Be sure your browser is full screen.
3. Click on ‘Office 365’ in top left next to the Apps Launcher.mouseclick
4. On right, click on Install Office.
5. Click Office 365 apps.
6. Click Save File (or Close, depending on which browser you are using).
7. Follow the on screen instructions to complete the installation.
8. You have 5 licenses to use on personal devices.
To see the status of your licenses:

  1. Go to Outlook in Office 365, and click on the gear icon (top right) and click on Office 365 at the bottom under ‘Your app settings’.
  2. On the left, click on ‘My Installs’ to manage installs.

HelpDesk: Main: 610-499-1047
Delaware: 302-477-2221
Harrisburg: 717-541-1927

News and Notes from TLT – Summer 2019

In this issue: 
  • Fall ‘19 Courses in Canvas 
  • Inactive vs. Deleted Students 
  • NEW Canvas add-ins: Poll Everywhere and Screencast-O-Matic 
  • Accessible Course Content (coming soon: Video Captions and Transcripts) 
Fall ‘19 Course Load Date – Available in Canvas by the end of the day on June 18th. 
  • To customize your dashboard – in the Courses tab, select the star next to the courses you want to see on your dashboard 
  • If you are interested in getting a head start building your courses, create a Master Class and import the content once courses are loaded. Videos and Guide. 
  • When it’s time to import your course content, be sure to “select specific content”. This will not only prevent duplications, but also prevent unwanted content/settings to transfer.
    • IMPORTANT: If you chose to import ALL, including course “Settings”, and have manually altered course dates in your previous course, those old dates WILL transfer. This may prevent students from participating in your course
“Inactive Students”   

Beginning June 10, 2019, any student who is removed from a course after the start date will be listed as “inactive” in Canvas, instead of disappearing completely. This improvement will allow you to retain submissions, attendance information, etc. within the course. 

Coming Soon! Poll Everywhere in Canvas starting Fall ‘19 

Poll Everywhere will soon be integrated into Canvas. You will be able to: 

  • Import your course roster, automatically giving your students a participant account 
  • Send scores from your poll to the Canvas gradebook
  • Add polls into your course Modules
  • For more information or to get an account, email TLToffice@widener.edu.
*NEW* Screencast-O-Matic in Canvas 

Did you know you can screen capture within your Canvas course? The Screencast-O-Matic integration has been added university wide, allowing you to create instructional videos with a few simple clicks. 

Accessibility 

As you prepare your courses, keep accessibility in mind. For more information on creating an accessible Canvas course and creating accessible documents check out the Digital Accessibility course in Canvas

Coming Soon! Video Captioning 

Widener will soon be offering video captioning through Cielo24. If you have instructional videos and want to learn more about the new captioning service, email captions@widener.edu.