Technology Update - June 01, 2011
Updates for Drexel’s Wireless Guest Network
Improvements are being made to the “drexelguest” wireless network, a free Wi-Fi service for conference attendees and guests of Drexel University.
The “drexelguest” wireless network is designed for immediate, temporary use, as explained on the network’s new “portal” page that users will see upon connecting to the network for the first time. Drexel conference organizers who would like their attendees to have more than temporary use of the network can contact IRT’s Networking Team at email@example.com to make advance requests for temporary passwords. Requests for temporary password access must be made at least one week prior to the event.
Protect Your Data: Get Connected Backup/PC
To prevent an unfortunate loss of data on your University-owned computer, IRT offers Connected Backup/PC, a locally-hosted service for departmental use. Connected Backup/PC’s software operates in the background of your computer, so you can schedule the backup process and continue to work while it runs. Connected Backup/PC is also “self-serve,” meaning that you can recover files quickly without IT assistance.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or see our information about Connected Backup/PC on University-owned computers.
For personal computers owned by students, faculty, and staff, IRT has partnered with Iron Mountain Digital to offer a similar and low-cost service for backing up data. The cost of the Connected Backup/PC service for personal use starts at $29.95 per year, depending on the amount of storage you need.
Never lose important files again! With Connected Backup/PC, you can back up your files easily without having to buy, label, and store CDs, Zip disks, or other media. For more information, see the link above.
IRT’s Video-Conferencing Services
IRT’s Video-Conferencing and Audio Visual (VCAV) team supports the Drexel community in three key areas: Video-Conferencing (through applications such as Adobe Connect), Webcasting, and Lecture Capture. Using VC-enabled classrooms equipped with single and multipoint video-conferencing capability, the VCAV team can make your presentations available to a much wider audience. They can also assist you in webcasting your special events as well as capturing your lectures for anytime, anywhere access via the Web.
To find out more about the services provided by the VCAV team, or to schedule an event for webcasting, please send an email to email@example.com.
Verizon Smartphones and Drexel’s SMTP Server
IRT has recently received some reports of an incompatibility between Verizon Wireless smartphones on the 3G/4G network and Drexel’s SMTP (outgoing email) server. IRT is still investigating the issue, but here is what we know so far:
- The problem was caused by an anti-spam security measure implemented by Verizon Wireless.
- Smartphones on a Wi-Fi connection (such as DragonFly3) are not affected, only smartphones on a 3G/4G connection.
- iPhone users can utilize a VPN application on their 3G/4G network as a work-around (see “Connecting an iPhone to Cisco VPN” below for instructions).
- Android users cannot use VPN software, but they can attempt to utilize the SMTP server of another email provider as a work-around. If you have an account with Google, Yahoo, Comcast, or any other email provider, you can use its SMTP setting in your Drexel mail account.
Connecting an iPhone to Cisco VPN
Cisco VPN is software that can be used to connect a computer, smartphone, or other Web-capable device to Drexel’s domain network from an off-campus location. If you need to access the VPN in order to use Drexel’s SMTP server for email (see “Verizon Smartphones and Drexel’s SMTP Server” above), instructions for setting up an iOS device with the VPN are posted at AskDrexel under “How do I connect to the Drexel VPN using my iPhone or iPad?”
If you have questions about these instructions or need assistance, contact the IRT Help Desk at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-895-2020.
Drexel Enterprise System Compatibility
If you are purchasing a new computer for your office or department, please note that to utilize Drexel University Enterprise systems, users must use Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate, or Enterprise editions with Internet Explorer (IE) 8, or Windows XP with IE7.
NOTE: IE9 has NOT been certified for use with Drexel Enterprise systems. Windows 7 Enterprise is Drexel’s corporate-licensed version for sole use with Drexel-owned computers.
For example, Drexel Core Enterprise systems, including Banner, Nolij Web, Hyperion, RightNow, and Sitecore, do not work with Macintosh OS.
Also, some incompatibility has been identified between 64-bit Windows 7/IE8 and Nolij or Hyperion in Administrator mode. IRT advises users with 64-bit Windows 7/IE8 to run IE in 32-bit mode (see “When 64 (Bit) Is Less Than 32 (Bit)” below for more information).
If you have specific questions regarding your operating system, browser, or a particular application not mentioned above, contact your System Administrator or the IRT Help Desk at 215-895-2020 or email@example.com.
Browser Compatibility and Drexel Webmail
The current version of Drexel’s Webmail service, the Oracle Convergence Platform, is not compatible with Internet Explorer (IE) 9 or the Google Chrome browser. The browsers currently supported for use with Webmail are IE7 and IE8, and Firefox 3 and 4. The Firefox browser can be downloaded at http://www.firefox.com.
For users who have been updated to IE9 through automatically-installed Windows Updates, follow these steps to revert back to IE8:
- Click the “Start” button or menu and search for “Add or Remove Programs.” Choose the first search result.
Note: You can also find ”Add or Remove Programs” under “Start” > “Control Panel.” The exact name and location of the “Add or Remove Programs” applet will vary depending on your system.
- Click “View installed updates” to the left of the program list.
- Browse the updates until you find “Windows Internet Explorer 9.” Right-click this item, then choose “Uninstall.”
Once the uninstallation process is complete, you will need to restart your computer to finalize the removal.
Upgrade to DUNX1 Server
IRT will be upgrading the hardware for the DUNX1 server after June 14 during the summer term break. Current user accounts will be migrated to the new server with minimal disruption to users. IRT will post updated information on our home page at http://www.drexel.edu/irt once plans for the upgrade are finalized.
When 64 (Bit) Is Less Than 32 (Bit)
Are you using a 64-bit version of Windows 7? If so, the 64-bit version of Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) is installed (or “enabled”) by default. However, most browser add-ons, such as 32-bit toolbars from eBay, AOL, and Google, will not work with the 64-bit version of IE8. ActiveX controls are also native to their respective bit versions of IE8.
You can select to open either version of the browser from the “Start” menu. “Internet Explorer (64-bit)” is the 64-bit version, and “Internet Explorer” is the 32-bit version.
For more information about the differences between the 32- and 64-bit versions of Internet Explorer, see this Q&A from MSDN Blogs. Microsoft also provides further information about switching from 32-bit IE8 to 64-bit, and vice versa.
Creating Views in SharePoint
You can easily create useful views of SharePoint lists and libraries for yourself or your team. Views can be customized to include any combination of the available columns in any order you want. By building a collection of views that cater to different uses of the list or library, you and your team can see the most pertinent information at a glance.
To create a view, follow these steps:
- Navigate to the list or library for which you would like to create a new view.
- Click the "View" drop-down at the top right of the list and select “Create View.”
- Click "Standard View" for the purpose of these instructions.
- Type a descriptive name for the new view.
- If you would like to make this view your default, check the box next to "Make this the default view."
- Decide who the audience of your view will be:
Check the box(es) next to the column(s) you would like to include in your new view.
- Choose “Create a Personal View” if you will be the only one using this view.
- Choose “Create a Public View” if this view will be for everyone who views the list or library.
If you checked multiple columns, use the drop-down boxes next to the column names to change the order in which the columns will appear. (Note: There are additional options on this page for refining your view, such as Sorting by Column, Filtering, and Grouping, but these will not be covered in this article.)
Click “OK” to create your new view.
You should now see your list or library through your new view. If you don’t like the way it turned out, simply click the "View" drop-down and choose “Modify this View” to adjust the settings.
For help with SharePoint and creating/modifying views, contact the Online Learning Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-895-1224.
Handy Shortcuts in Windows
There are many handy keyboard shortcuts in Windows that you can use to streamline your activities. The following are a few of the shortcuts that Windows offers:
Ctrl + C (or Ctrl + Insert) (Copy the selected item)
Ctrl + X (Cut the selected item)
Ctrl + V (Paste the selected item)
Ctrl + Z (Undo an action)
Ctrl + Y (Repeat last action)
Win + L (Lock your computer)
For more Windows keyboard shortcuts, check out Microsoft’s Keyboard Shortcuts page.
Tips and Tricks for Microsoft Office
Print Preview in Office 2010
In Office 2010, you can preview and print your documents from one location: the “Print” tab in Office's “Backstage view.” (The Backstage view replaces the “File” menu and the Office orb in previous versions.)
To preview and print your document in Office 2010:
- Click the “File” tab, and then click “Print.”
- A preview of your document will automatically appear. To view each page, click the arrows at the bottom left of the preview.
- Click the “Print” button when you are ready to print your document.
To exit out of Backstage view and return to your document, press the “Esc” key or click the “File” tab.
Printing Part of a Document in Office 2010
In Office 2010, you can print a selected portion of your document. Here’s how:
- Select the portion of the document you would like to print by highlighting it with your cursor.
- Click the “File” tab, and then click “Print.”
- Under “Settings,” click “Print All Pages” to access a drop-down list of settings.
- Click “Print Selection,” and then click the “Print” button.
News & Notes from the Online Learning Team
Bb Vista: End of Term Archiving
As the spring quarter draws to a close, IRT would like to remind instructors that course sections from the 200935 spring quarter (March 2010 – June 2010) will soon become unavailable in the system. As always, IRT backs up and archives active sections before they are removed, but instructors are encouraged to back up pertinent data from these sections in case they need to reference it in the future.
Almost all information in a course can be downloaded and stored locally. While this information can be restored from archived backups, it is usually easier to retrieve from spreadsheets and text files stored locally on your machine. If you are concerned about grade audits, for instance, you should download the Grade Book, assignments, assessment reports, mail, etc. To export your Grade Book:
- From the “Teach” tab, click on the Grade Book in the lower left-hand pane.
- Click on the “Export to Spreadsheet” button at the bottom of the screen.
- If you have any hidden columns that you would like to export, select “All columns” under “Columns to Export.”
- Click “Export” at the bottom of the screen.
- Click “Save” when prompted to save a copy as a CSV file on your computer. This file can be viewed in a spreadsheet application such as Microsoft’s Excel or Apple’s Numbers.
For more information or for assistance with downloading items from your course, please contact the Online Learning Team at email@example.com.
Go Green with the Assignment Tool!
Are you still marking up student papers by hand? With Bb Vista’s Assignments tool, you can save paper (and the extra time it takes to write comments by hand) by marking up student assignments electronically:
- Access the “Assignment Dropbox,” which is located on the “Teach” tab under “Instructor Tools” in the left-hand pane.
- Choose the assignment you would like to download by selecting it from the drop-down list in the upper right-hand corner of the screen and clicking the green arrow.
- To download all student submissions on the screen, check the box in the blue header row (next to “Title”), and click on the “Create Printable View” button at the bottom of the screen.
- On the next page, click the “Save to File” button to create a zip file containing all of the student submissions.
- To access the zip file, click on the link entitled “[Course name]-AssignmentSubmissions-[date]-[time].zip.”
Each student submission is saved in a separate folder which includes an HTML file (containing any text or comments entered by the student in the textboxes) as well as any attachments that were uploaded. From here, you can access each MS Word document and enter revisions/comments electronically using the “Track Changes” feature on the "Review" tab of the Ribbon.
Limitation of Assignment Cutoff Date in Bb Vista
Before the cutoff date of a Bb Vista assignment, instructors can return comments to students without a grade by selecting “Return to Student for further editing.” However, once the assignment cutoff date has passed, this option will disappear. To make the option reappear, simply extend the cutoff date to a future date/time (perhaps to the end of the current term).
If you have any questions about extending the cutoff date or the Bb Vista Assignments tool, contact the Online Learning Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-895-1224.
Help with Entering Grades into Banner
If you are a new instructor or if you only teach occasionally, you might need some direction in order to enter grades into Banner. Help is just a click away!
When you click the “faculty” tab in DrexelOne, you will see a “Quick Links” channel on the right-hand side of your screen. The last link is entitled “Grading and Grade Submission.” Clicking on this link will take you to the same resources that are available on the Registrar’s Web site, including written and video instructions for entering grades, changing grades, and handling other grade-related details.
Firefox 4 Not Supported for Use with Bb Vista
Although Firefox 4 appears to work well with Bb Vista for many users, it has not been tested and certified by Blackboard, and therefore is not currently supported for use with Bb Vista. For example, the “Enable HTML Creator” button does not work in Firefox 4, and the “Browser Check” window appears at every login. For best results, use Firefox 3.6.x instead with Bb Vista.
A full list of supported browsers can be found on Blackboard’s Web site.
If you have any questions, please contact the OLT at email@example.com or 215-895-1224.
Copy Content from a Previous Bb Vista Section
As you prepare for summer term, remember that you can take advantage of the course copy feature in Bb Vista to apply the contents of an existing course to your summer term courses.
At the start of the summer quarter, your upcoming section(s) will appear on your Course List in Bb Vista. The first time you click on your new section(s), you can choose to make any of your past sections the basis for the new one(s) by selecting “Copy content from another course” from the four choices displayed on the “Assign Course Content” screen. Everything is copied over except for enrollments, student contributions, and certain PowerLinked items, such as Turnitin assignments.
To view a brief slideshow on how to copy content from a previous section, see IRT’s page for “Reusing Content” in Bb Vista.
If you have any questions, please contact the Online Learning Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-895-1224.
Tracking Student Activity in Your Bb Vista Course
Using Bb Vista’s tracking tool, you can access a report of student activity in your course. To run a student activity report:
- From the “Teach” tab, click on the Tracking tool under “Instructor Tools.”
- Select a “Student Tracking” Report, choose a date and time range, and click “Run Report.”
- The next screen displays an overview of all student activity during the selected date/time range, including the total time (in hours, minutes, and seconds) that has been spent in the course, the number of discussion messages that have been read and posted, the number of assignments accessed and submitted, the number of content folders and files viewed, and more. To download this report to Excel, click the “Export” button.
- To view an activity report for an individual student during the selected date/time range, click on the student’s name. Activity is broken down into sessions based on date and time of access; to view a detailed report of activity for a particular session, click on the hyperlinked session number. This report can also be downloaded to Excel by clicking on the “Export” button.
Sign Up for OLT Workshops
The Online Learning Team conducts training sessions on Blackboard (Bb) Vista, Camtasia, DragonDrop, Dreamweaver, Mac OS X, Respondus, SharePoint, and Wimba Classroom. In addition, several brown bag lunches and workshops on technology products of interest (Microsoft Windows 7, Office 2010, PowerPoint, Turnitin, GIMP, Audacity, etc.) are held each month. These training sessions are open to members of Drexel’s community as well as the general public.
To reserve a spot at any of these workshops, email us at email@example.com with your name, institution (if other than Drexel), contact information, and the name of the workshop(s) you would like to attend.
Below is a sampling of workshops taking place in June and July:
Bb Vista Full Day Workshop
Wednesday, June 8, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Intro to iWork
Tuesday, June 7, 10:00 a.m. – noon
DragonDrop Basic Training
Tuesday, July 19, 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Web Basics I
Thursday, June 2, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Visit our Web site for our complete training schedule and workshop descriptions. Unless otherwise noted, all training sessions will be held in room 116 of the Korman Center (off the Quad on Drexel’s Main Campus, 33rd Street between Market and Chestnut Streets).