Technology to Support Working Remotely
The College’s move to offer academics and student support services from a distance, along with the expectation that all non-essential employees work from home, have created a series of new ITS needs by faculty and staff.
In order for you to remain connected to your everyday work-related resources and continue with your work tasks and communications, ITS has developed helpful guidelines for accessing shared drives from home, communicating with colleagues and students, and securing ITS support.
VPN (Accessing Shared Drives from Off-Campus)
Employees who have a SUNY Orange-owned tablet or laptop that can be utilized remotely are expected to continue employing your College-owned device for your remote work.
Certain College resources are only available on-campus, such as Banner Admin and network shared drive areas. Should you need to connect to on-campus resources from a remote environment, you will need to connect with a Virtual Private Network (VPN). Our VPN client software can be obtained from the new “Technical Services” portlet in MySUNYOrange. Following your login to the portal, please choose the Technical Services tab and locate the Downloads portlet. There you will find a link to the VPN Setup Instructions (Setup & Connection to SUNY Orange VPN) that will assist you in connecting from your SUNY Orange College-owned device or your personal computer. Choose the platform for the client of your device (For Windows or For Mac) and download the client. Follow the Setup Instructions to install and connect to the SUNY Orange network. Once connected, look to the Helpful Links portlet for the document Adding Network Drive Shortcuts. This document will assist you in connecting to your network drive shares.
For those using their own personal computer equipment, security considerations make it necessary for you to apply the following safeguards:
- Your device must have the latest operating system updates applied.
- You must have anti-virus software installed and up-to-date.
- You cannot store any personally identifying information on your personal device. Please save to Google Drive or your department’s network drive.
If you experience any technology challenges when working remotely, the Help Line at 341-4749 will be available. ITS will do what we can to remediate any technology issues.
While connected via VPN, we request that, to the best extent practicable, you refrain from moving large numbers of large files from a shared drive to your remote device, as this will use significant bandwidth and cause delays across the system. Regular Word and Excel docs should not have a major effect.
To assist in maintaining continuity with meetings while off-campus, Zoom is available for both audio/video and audio-only communications. You can access Zoom via MySUNYOrange. Once you have connected to MySUNYOrange, choose the Technical Services tab. Look to the Systems and Services portlet and choose the letter Z. This will bring up the link for Zoom Video Conferencing. Choose that link to get started with Zoom. A Getting Started Guide is available on the ITS Documentation page at https://sunyorange.edu/its/how-to.html.
Most users will be granted a Basic Zoom license, which allows one user to connect to one other Zoom user for an unlimited amount of time, but three or more users have a limit of 40 minutes per meeting. We have a limited number of a Pro Zoom accounts that allow for meetings of three or more people to last longer than 40 minutes.
Help Desk Access
Our Help Desk phone line (341-4749) will be staffed off campus for our extended hours of 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday. We still recommend that people submit service tickets just as if they are on-campus at https://sunyorange.edu/its/support/faculty_staff_support.html. Being off-campus may mean that your call will be forwarded to Blackboard Help Desk, but be assured that the ticket they create will be immediately available to our Help Desk personnel and a callback will be initiated as soon as possible.
For those employees who do not have personal computer devices available for remote work, the College is foraging for laptop computers to distribute. The College does not have enough resources to provide a laptop to everyone, so we are asking that you contact your supervisor if you have a need for a College-owned laptop. Supervisors will complete an ITS Service Request ticket on your behalf (request should include employee name, job title and function). The request will then be reviewed by the Vice President of your division and prioritized against other requests so we can make the best use of our limited resources. A followup communication will come from your supervisor, after consultation with your Vice President.
For those wishing to forward their office number elsewhere and/or check voicemail remotely, instructions are available at the link here: https://sunyorange.edu/its/how-to.html. Look for the Self Help article link under the heading VOIP (AVAYA) PHONES.
Additionally, while working remotely, we suggest you update your voicemail to include your email address as an alternative way to reach you. Suggest to callers that they may have better success connecting via email while you are working remotely.
ITS will continue to evolve and expand our services as situations change. We appreciate your patience and flexibility as we all strive to honor the College’s dual commitments of preserving the health and safety of our College community and delivering academic instruction from a distance.
Leland Hach, Jr.
Interim Chief Information Officer