Community College of Rhode Island

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IT News

November 2012

New format

Steve VieiraThe emailed version of the CIO newsletter is undergoing a significant change in the format offered. Instead of providing lots of content, now the email format will simply include links in a Table of Contents fashion with a brief discussion on what is contained in the article and a link to "read more" which will bring you to the full version of the article, as seen below. That way, readers can focus in on those articles of interest making the emailed newsletter much more accessible. I hope you enjoy the new delivery and I hope you will take the time to provide some feedback on the articles and presentation.

Changing over to Exchange 2010

Exchange 2010During the 2012- 2013 Academic Calendar year, email accounts will be moved to Microsoft Exchange 2010. This will be a seamless, transparent move with no interruption in service. The Department of Information Technology has been operating an Exchange 2010 server for almost a year and so there has been significant testing involved.

The migration will occur letter by letter starting with accounts that begin with the letter “a” all the way through the alphabet. Each mailbox, where your current email is stored today, with all the folders you’ve created, will be moved and you will be informed when that has occurred. There is no established date for this to begin due to the fact that we are waiting on a State Purchasing Purchase Order for an email archiving utility that will accompany the migration.

The reasons for migrating to Exchange 2010:
  • Continuous replication – minimizes disruptions in email and supports business continuity by continually saving all email to multiple storage areas ensuring reliability and accessibility
  • Virtualization – enables fault tolerance which guarantees that if one email server were to encounter a problem, other servers would automatically take up the slack and no downtime would occur
  • Cost savings on storage – uses 70% less desk input/output which enables CCRI to store email mailboxes on less expensive storage disks
  • Larger mailboxes – increases the capacity that the current mailboxes can hold
  • Voicemail transcription – the introduction of a “universal inbox” which will contain email as well as voicemail from the new telephone upgrade using a technology called unified communications which is described in the Avaya telephone upgrade below.
  • Service Desk cost reduction – reduces the call volumes by enabling email users to control distribution lists and updating personal information
  • Higher Availability – supports automatic failover meaning that a broken email server would automatically be supported by an additional server which would take on the load while repairs are being made; the result = no interruptions in service
  • Easier Calendar Sharing – with federated IDs, a process where external recipients would be certified or granted access to calendars because they are determined to be safe, collaboration between colleges and organizations become simpler and making meetings involves not only people at CCRI but also external partners whose calendar you could check for availability
Thus the benefits of Exchange 2010 are:
  • Having a Single Location in Outlook where email and voicemail come together – No longer do you have to check your voicemail on the phone and you can respond to either email or voicemail through Exchange 2010
  • More Reliability for email – All of the virtualized, high availability and fault tolerant features guarantee that Exchange 2010 does not experience interruptions in service and that it is always on and accessible from anywhere
  • Outlook web Access (OWA) Improvements – making the OWA look and feel more like the Outlook screen and functionality on your PC; making OWA easier to use and more like being on campus

The migration to Microsoft Exchange 2010 will deliver better service to everyone at CCRI and will offer more and new functionality for email use.

SourceOne email archiving

Source OneEMC SourceOne Email Management for Microsoft Exchange is an email archiving package that helps reduce operational costs while enforcing email record-keeping policies, in compliance with internal governance as well as government regulations surrounding discovery processing. This software improves user productivity, providing seamless access to archived content by displaying archived email along with active email in the mailbox screen. In other words, when email is archived it is not removed from the list of email message you have but is in fact moved from Exchange and stored externally to ensure that your mailbox works at peak performance.

Proactive information management helps with litigation readiness. A centralized archive accelerates high-volume discovery searches and enables secure legal holds. And, archiving of PST files assures complete and accurate discoveries. All of these features are compliance issues for CCRI and every other public institution that offers email services.

The plan for SourceOne is to establish, through the ITAC group and vetted by the President’s Council (PC), timeframes for archiving email automatically as well as removing email permanently after a determined period of time for both.

So the lifecycle of an email message is as follows.
  • Someone sends you an email message and it stored in Exchange in your mailbox whether you are logged into email or not
  •  Once you log into email, the mailbox shows all new and existing email messages.
  • Once read, you decide whether to keep the email message, delete it or store it in another folder of your choice (that you’ve built)
  • At a determined time (number of days or months depending upon the policy established by ITAC and PC, those stored email messages are archived to a central storage device in the CCRI Data Center but are still listed in the mailbox (as being archived but available with a single click)
  • At another determined amount of time, depending upon the mailbox and their specific needs, the archived email messages are moved to a secondary storage device where they are no longer listed in the mailbox.
So the benefits of SourceOne email archiving are:
  • Reduces the aging email issue and manages the email lifecycle more effectively improving performance for Exchange
  • Automated and manual archiving options are increased and more efficiently moves email without lots of effort and constant warnings and reminders
  • Automated retention and disposition of email in adherence to CCRI policies established by ITAC and PC
  • Litigation readiness in the event that CCRI is required to access aging email messages
  • Robust search tools for looking through aging and archived email content
  • Transparent experience for mailbox users preserving access to archived email messages through the Outlook screen

The key to this plan is the compliance issue of discoverability in the event of litigation and the manner in which CCRI stores email. By archiving email and recording its location, CCRI complies with both state and federal regulations.

Office 365 move for students

Office 365Microsoft is transitioning from the Microsoft Live@EDU program to their newest offering, Microsoft Office 365. In January 2013, during the intersession break, 70,000+ accounts will be moved to the new service, once again at no cost to the college. This latest transition to the cloud application provides increased functionality and services for CCRI students. Microsoft Office 365 includes Exchange 2010 and as a result more functionality, reliability and security for student mailboxes.

Other benefits of Office 365 are:
  • The cloud-based experience of using the familiar Office suite that was evident in Live@EDU is vastly improved by increasing the capabilities of the online programs (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) to do more
  • The availability of using the SkyDrive becomes simpler and seamless
  • The reliability and accessibility of the services 24 hours a day 7 days a week 52 weeks per year without interruption
  • Email calendars are greatly improved and offer all the capability needed
  • Web conferencing is introduced for both audio and video meetings with additional capabilities of sharing desktops with those with whom you are conferencing
  • Instant messaging becomes available for the first time
  • Team sites can be established with other students to collaborate and share documents and presentations
  • Simple websites can also be established by students who wish to share their work and their portfolios

Campuses throughout the country are transitioning their existing Microsoft Live@EDU sites to Office 365.

Written Information Security Policy

WISPCCRI, in conjunction with URI, is vetting a written information security policy (WISP) for each of the following:

  • Sophos website warnings
  • EAC outcomes
  • Virtual desktop
  • Lynda.com
  • Windows 8
  • Workflow
  • PrinterOn
  • Mobile; Blackboard
  • Adobe Captivate
  • Avaya Upgrade

It Governance and Project Submission

Project submissionIn its third year of operations, the IT Governance process is running strong. Potential projects and requests for IT resources are vetted through the three advisory groups (ITAC, ATAC and ISAC) and rated by the requestor and members of the group for placement on the IT Project List. This is the time of year when these projects are harvested from students, faculty and staff and added to the list for their eventual placement. All projects are placed on the list regardless of their nature and the amount of work involved.

We urge students, faculty and staff who see weaknesses in business processes, technology gaps and potential areas where we can improve services to the college constituency to submit a form and rate their project according to the rating sheet. The form and sheet can be delivered through email by contacting Steve Vieira (savieira@ccri.edu).

Once these sheets are completed, send them back and they will be discussed through both email and in the monthly meetings that occur regularly. A response will be returned to the submitter with information describing the rating as applied by the initial advisory group and ITAC.

Projects never get lost because they remain on the list and get boosted up every year as projects are reviewed and completed. Every project or request submitted will be serviced guaranteed.

This page developed and maintained by the Chief Information Officer. Send comments and suggestions to .


Last Updated: 10/24/14