The University of San Francisco: Information Technology Services
Information Technology
Information Technology Services

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Tech Times - Dec. 2013

Get free and discounted software through the USF eStore

Unbeknownst to many people in the USF community, ITS offers many discounts to students and faculty on various PC and Apple software products. Through the USF eStore (, discounts are available on over 190 tech-related products. Walter Petruska, USF’s Information Security Officer, states the eStore offers “The products that are most useful for students because they either need [this product] for a course, they have asked for it, or the faculty has requested its availability for the student.” Microsoft Office365, Adobe Creative Cloud, VMware Fusion, and Parallels are just a few of the many products that have been made available for free or greatly discounted purchases.

The eStore offers two different software programs — Dreamspark and Personal Software Purchases. Every item listed on the DreamSpark page is a Microsoft-based program, and is offered free exclusively to students and faculty. Personal Software Purchases offers great discounts on Adobe and various other tech-related goods for students, faculty, and staff. [Learn more]

Student Computing Guide helps navigate services at USF

Student Computing GuideOver the years, many students have felt lost when trying to familiarize themselves with the USF website. “I have no idea what I’m doing,” is a phrase heard often amongst new students when browsing through USF’s site. Well, students, the good people at ITS have heard you and have put together a guide that will relieve all of your stresses. 

The Student Computing Guide was created as a convenience for students who have trouble utilizing the ITS website. The Student Computing Guide addresses basic policies, needs, and questions that many students may have. Maintained and managed by Nikki Williams, the director of Client Support Services, the guide is regularly updated to make certain that it continues to address students’ needs and answers all major questions that you may have. [Learn more]

Remodeled Parina Lab provides space for study and more

Students in Parina LoungeFor the past few years USF campus-goers have witnessed the campus transform while under construction. Arguably one of the most significant developments for students has been the renovation of the Parina Computer Lab, which has become a popular location for students to meet up or study in between classes. Located on the third floor of the University Center (UC), just one floor above the USF cafeteria, Parina Lab now offers not only a convenient spot to eat, study, and relax while on campus, but it also offers a wide array of technology that students can take advantage of.

Installed along the walls of the computer lab are a dozen Mac Minis, allowing students to quickly print documents while on the go. Additionally, upgrades to the lab’s printers have been made so that students can print from virtually anywhere on campus. Parina is now home to two large Pharos printers that offer wireless printing capabilities, meaning that students may even print from a laptop. [Learn more]


Stay safe as hackers turn their attention to mobile devices

Mobile SecuritySecurity of mobile devices is an increasing concern as we are in the midst of a major shift away from desktop and laptop computers. Increasingly, people are using smartphones, tablets, and other portable gadgets and expecting to use them everywhere. As a result, professional hackers have also adapted by shifting their focus towards mobile devices.

There are various ways to keep your mobile experience safe and secure. Aside from maintaining patches, updating to the newest versions of software is a great way to keep your devices from being tapped into. Additionally, software updates fix more than meets the eye. While the average user believes that companies offer updates only for the purpose of offering new features, they are not aware that updates often simultaneously beef up security by fixing their previous bugs and blocking entry to malicious hackers.

The latest Mavericks Mac OS update is free, so regardless of whether you have an iPhone or MacBook Pro, it is essential that you update to the latest software in order to have your security up to par. Android updates are also free, so take advantage of the new features while also improving your mobile security.  [Learn more]

How we communicate

ITS uses Twitter for service announcements, security updates, and messages.

We also maintain a blog and a Facebook page with computing and security tips, and service information.

The ITS website is organized around a Service Portfolio, which works as a guide to the services we offer as well as the Student Computing Guide, CIT Training Calendar, Computer Replacement policies, and more.


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Gilbert Lee