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OIT Completed Projects 2015-2016

Office of Information Technology
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OIT Completed Projects 2015-2016

2015-2016

Completed Projects

1. Mobile Charging Stations

Seven rapid charging stations – similar to the charging stations you see at airports – have been installed at various strategic places on campus: the NAC Plaza by the Student Café area, the Technology Center in NAC 1/301, the Steinman Hall Lobby, the first floor of the Administration building, the Marshak Café, the Shepard 51 Student Club space, and the School of Architecture. These multi-unit charging stations are CCNY-branded and some also function as café tables. This project was funded through savings obtained through the student print quota implemented over the summer.

2. Campus-Wide Digital Signage

Funded by the CCNY Student Technology Fee, eight large digital displays have been installed throughout campus in collaboration with the Offices of Facilities and Marketing and Communications. The current displays can be remotely programmed to broadcast pertinent information regarding campus events, upcoming deadlines, weather, CUNY alerts, class scheduling changes and cancelations, and campus bus schedules.

3. Wi-Fi Expansion and Upgrades

In the past several months we have deployed an additional 53 access points (APs), bringing the total number up from 370 to 425. To accommodate the rapid increase in the use of the CCNY Wi-Fi, we have acquired an additional 92 access points, waiting to be installed, to increase our Wi-Fi footprint.  Once all the newly purchased access points are installed, it will expand our current wireless infrastructure to a total of 517 APs. This will dramatically increase the bandwidth and coverage across the entire campus, focusing particularly on open areas such as the libraries, as well as lecture halls and classrooms. We will continue adding to our Wi-Fi deployment each year.

4. CCNY Wi-Fi Controller Upgrade

The campus Wi-Fi controllers have been upgraded to provide enhanced security and more availability – allowing users to take advantage of the newer technologies such as the guest self-provisioning access to the wireless network. 425 Access Points (APs) have been migrated to this new device. The old Wi-Fi network IDs ‘CCNYWIFI’ and ‘CCNYWIFI-en’ have been replaced with “ccny-wifi” and “ccny-guest.”

5. Laptop Loaner Program for CCNY Students

The OIT is pleased to announce that a new Laptop Loaner Program, funded by the CCNY Student Technology Fee, is now available for matriculated CCNY students. The loaner program offers 111 laptops (76 Dell Latitude and 35 MacBook Pro) with the latest technology.  Laptops are available for daily use on a first-come, first-served basis, Monday through Friday.  All laptops are loaded with MS Office, Wi-Fi, Adobe Acrobat, as well as other CCNY-approved software such as Matlab, AutoCAD, SPSS, SAS, Adobe Cloud, etc. Please note: a user must be logged into the network for some software packages to be fully operational.

6. iMedia Laptops Upgrade for CCNY Faculty Loan Program

In addition to creating a new laptop loaner program for CCNY students, we have also replaced all the outdated laptops (35 laptops: 25 Dell Latitude and 10 MacBook Pros) available for faculty loan. These laptops are available to all CCNY faculty through our iMedia department, which is located in NAC 5/220.

7. Email System Upgrade

A new more secure and feature-rich email server was deployed and implemented for approximately 6,000 faculty and staff.  The previous system was not designed to support the number of email accounts that it hosted and lacked some essential features of a modern messaging system. The new system integrates additional features, such as centralized calendars, contacts, and better mobile device support. Furthermore it provides automated and redundant backup. As a result of its robust features and stability, the new system enabled the consolidation of disparate email servers maintained by the Division of Science and various engineering departments, which were hosted on obsolete and insecure hardware and software that created challenges for system administrators to maintain.

8. Load Balancer Implementation for Email Services

In order to provide email server redundancy and seamless failover in the event of outages, network traffic was diverted from directly accessing the email servers and routed instead to a cluster of load balancers. These distribute the traffic of our email services to allow for optimal performance and minimal stress.

9. Enterprise Backup Implementation

Reliably maintaining data is a critical service of any IT organization. OIT has implemented an Enterprise Backup Solution. This solution offers IT business continuity and disaster recovery capability, which includes automatic scheduled backups of critical data maintained in CCNY’s data centers and the restoration of lost data with a minimum downtime in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. Critical servers and data are currently securely backed up to disks and then copied to removable media and sent off-site on a monthly basis.

10. Smart Classroom Expansion

We are continuing to expand our existing smart classrooms. Ten (10) new smart classrooms (three in Marshak, five in NAC and two in Shepard Hall) have been outfitted with AV systems, a projector, audio speakers, controllers, AV interfaces and screens. Additionally, two smart classrooms have been upgraded. NAC 6/150 has been outfitted with a completely new audiovisual system. CG 252 now has a new lectern with a built-in desktop computer, laptop connections and speakers. The college currently has a total of 140 smart classrooms. The projectors in these rooms are equipped with the latest technology lamps, providing sharper images with more energy efficiency.

11. General Use Student Computer Labs Mac upgrade

In order to better support the Macs in the Tech Center, Graduate and Student Life labs, the operating system of the computers was upgraded to the newest version Mac OS X 10.11. The previous version was no longer supported. Additionally, Mac management software was deployed. This was critical for simplifying the management of the approximately 200 Macs in the general student labs. The service was designed so that it can be scaled to support all of the Macs on campus.

12. Green Printing Quota

Effective August 2015, a “green” student print quota was implemented in the Tech Fee-funded labs – the Tech Center (NAC 1/301), Fishbowl NAC Computer Lab (NAC 1/501), Graduate Student Lab (NAC 1/207) and Undergraduate Student Lab (NAC 1/114). Each student is allotted 1,000 pages per person in the Fall/Winter and again in the Spring/Summer periods. Print savings, since implementation, have resulted in a 46 percent reduction in printing.

13. Print Management Software

The printing software for the student computer labs was replaced because the previously installed software became unstable and prone to frequent crashes when the new print quotas were implemented. The new software allows for improved management of print quotas, better reporting, and a simpler and more stable interface.

14. Student Computer Lab Upgrades

OIT continues to work closely with the Office of Facilities to implement upgrades throughout the campus. Several student computer labs have been upgraded during the last several months, funded by the CCNY Students Technology Fee. These include:

  1. Spitzer School Of Architecture CAD Lab A.

One of the two School of Architecture CAD labs has been upgraded to a state-of-the-art “Sustainable Building Performance Lab” with 20 high end workstation computers and a cutting edge thermal imaging infrared camera that allows students to perform processor-intensive calculations and designs in the sustainable engineering, design and studio courses. This lab also supports Capstone student projects for graduate sustainability programs.  The new lab will benefit research and teaching, and consolidate NYC’s leadership role in the area of energy at CCNY.

  1. Computer Lab Accessibility for Social Science SH-105

35 obsolete computers were replaced with new computers. In addition, two new rows of seats were added, along with two wheelchair accessible computer workstations. 

  1. Artino General Mathematics Computer Lab Upgrade NAC 1/506

The lab is used by approximately 1,000 students a week to work on assignments and to run mathematics simulations using MatLab. In order for the students to work effectively, we replaced 24 obsolete computers and the classroom projector. In addition, the computers were added to the campus’s Active Directory, which allowed us to retire the obsolete servers that had been managing the lab, enabling more efficient administration of the computers.

  1.  NAC 6/104 Computer Lab

All computers were upgraded to allow students unhindered access to any of the applications installed in the lab— such as SPSS, SAS, and Microsoft Office. We also upgraded the old cabling infrastructure with new cabling to support high bandwidth traffic. Broken furniture was replaced and a new digital door lock was installed.

  1. Graduate Student Lab, NAC 1/207

The lab was remodeled with new furniture and wiring was redeployed to accommodate the new furniture.

 

15. CUNY Virtual Desktop

All students and faculty on CUNYfirst can now access certain CUNY-licensed software through the CUNY Virtual Desktop. The CUNY Virtual Desktop currently offers SAS, SPSS, Mathematica, Maplesoft and Matlab, with additional applications to be added in the future. The CUNY Virtual Desktop enables students and faculty to access these applications from their home or library computer, a laptop, or any mobile device at any time.

16. E-Timesheet Application

For part-time employees, paper timesheets were replaced with our newly developed and highly successful e-Timesheet application. It features a signature pad (where a user can sign their name on the screen and attach it to a dynamically generated timesheet); it recalls the previous timesheet and pre-populates all fields for the end-user the next time it is submitted; it has built-in logic to prevent users from submitting incorrect data; and has a workflow which allows the supervisor to approve the timesheet online from anywhere on or off campus. Once the supervisor has approved it, the timesheet goes to HR for final processing.  All submitted timesheets are accessible on a separate database for future reference. Since July 2015 close to 50,000 timesheets have been processed in this way, saving paper and toner costs, as well as time.

17. Password Reset Application

Our password reset application now has two forms, which allow faculty, staff and students to reset their passwords. It can also be used as a lookup tool to find a forgotten EMPLID ID and/or email address. During peak season over 5,000 resets are processed each month.

18. Credit Card Online Payment Application

OIT developed a credit card online payment application which functions as a general purpose credit card payment system, which the business office can offer to other CCNY departments to take payments for donations, parking, conferences and sponsorships. The application can also generate weekly reports on payments.

19. Online Registration Form for High School Program

OIT built an application where high school students can register online for the College Now program. The program administrator now has the ability to securely manage the collected information, and run reports on courses offered each semester.

20. Online Change of Grade Application

In collaboration with the Registrar’s office we have built an online change-of-grade application to allow instructors to submit grade changes for students.

21. CUNYfirst Report Generator

We have created a self-service reporting application that enables users to run and download frequently requested CUNYfirst with a more user-friendly interface.  Currently, 40 users from 16 departments are using this application. An authorized user can run the reports on demand, and download them as Excel or .CSV files. 

22. Faculty Workload Online Application

A faculty workload application has been developed which will allow department chairs to collect and approve faculty teaching, research and sabbatical times.

23. NJ Transit Discount Application

The NJ Transit Discount Application form for students has been redesigned with a user-friendlier interface, hosted conveniently in the City Central Student Portal. The application can generate a variety of reports on various subjects, including how many students are taking advantage of this benefit.

24. Center for Worker Education (CWE) Network Upgrade

The antiquated network infrastructure at CWE has been completely overhauled, replacing obsolete network switches with newer switches, which have more modern and robust configurations, and substantially increasing the intranet bandwidth from 100 MB to 1000 MB. Additionally, CWE’s Internet connection has been increased from 10 MB to 1000 MB, which has significantly increased the network speed and functionality. This has improved the user experience, and given us better visibility in troubleshooting network and Wi-Fi-related issues, as well as improved and increased security. Furthermore, CWE’s network has been merged with the CCNY main campus network which will allow for robust functionality between the campuses and security enhancements, while saving the college over $10,000 a year in equipment maintenance.

25. CUNY School of Medicine School Faculty and Student Computer Account Creation

In collaboration with the CCNY Library, we have automated the creation of computer accounts for faculty, staff, and students of the new CUNY School of Medicine and its affiliate St. Barnabas Hospital. These accounts are essential for accessing critical services such as email, the new School of Medicine curriculum management system, as well as the library databases used by the school.

26. Wellness / Accessibility Upgrade

The Wellness and Accessibility offices were operating within an obsolete network environment. Due to the sensitive nature of the data these offices hold, OIT implemented critical upgrades to the hardware and software on the servers. Additionally, the computers in the offices were joined to the Active Directory in order to better secure access to the data and centralize the management and security of the computers.

27. Spitzer IP Address Distribution Consolidation

The distribution of IP addresses was moved from an obsolete DHCP server that had been hosted in the Spitzer building to a cluster distributed between the NAC and CDI buildings. This change will help prevent frequent the network outages that users in the building had become accustomed to.

28. Honors Center File Share Migration

The CCNY Honors Center utilized a locally maintained file share hosted on a server with obsolete hardware and software accessed by both Windows and Macintosh users. Due to functionality, performance, and security concerns, files were migrated to a file share cluster that is backed up and has regular security updates.

29. Network Storage Upgrade

The storage system that hosts over 200 critical virtual servers was upgraded in order to alleviate inadequate system resources, allowing OIT to provide additional services as needed to the user community. In addition to many critical infrastructure services, the storage system hosts directory services, file shares, several websites used by various offices throughout the college.

30. Campus-wide Voicemail Upgrade

The obsolete voicemail server was replaced with three new voicemail servers that include larger storage space and faster processors, which provide better performance and redundancy. This new system expansion will benefit the College for years to come.

31. College-wide Classroom and Space Renovation

  1. SH 51 Student Club Space

Over the summer of 2015, OIT and the Office of Facilities worked to complete the building of the student clubs space.  OIT installed new network data, voice cabling and Wi-Fi access as well as the office computers and printers. The new facility now contains multiple clubrooms and several administrative offices and meeting rooms.

  1. CILES Labs (Marshak 105 and 107)

    OIT worked closely with the NOAA Crest staff, architects and the Facilities department to design optimal IT infrastructure for the labs. OIT played a significant role in implementing the network and cabling infrastructure required for the labs.
     

  2. NAC Classroom Renovations

Several classrooms have been renovated in the past several months with the latest data and voice cabling, networking capacity and Wi-Fi access point as well as furniture to provide better services to our faculty and students.  Listed below are some of the rooms that have been completed. NAC 5/220, 6/110, 7/231, 7/305, 7/306, 1/301 STC-1

32. Departmental and Office Relocation

Throughout the year, OIT worked with the Office of Facilities and end users to facilitate several departmental and office moves.  So far we have completed about 12 relocations.  These included re-cabling existing suites; adding and reconfiguring data and voice connections; coordinating computing equipment; and phone disconnections and reconnections.  Listed below are some of the offices that have been completed.

  • Office of Diversity and Compliance Move - Administration building to SH 109
  • Communications and Public Relations Office Expansion and Moves - SH 176
  • Admissions Office Moves and Setup - Admin 101
  • New Student Experience (ROTC and the Zahn Center) office setup - MR 053
  • Finance and Purchasing Offices Renovation and Expansion - Wingate 112
  • New York Alliance Departmental Move - Marshak 14 to Marshak 106
  • Student Support Services Program Office Move - Harris Hall 03 to Marshak 1104
  • Multiple faculty and staff have been moved to various locations in Marshak in order to free up rooms for the upcoming Harris Hall renovations
  • Moves of research groups continued throughout Summer 2015 and Fall 2015 from the Steinman and Marshak buildings to CDI