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FAQ: General Computer Questions

Should I turn my computer off at night?

No, eventually all of the computers on campus will be configured to automatically go to sleep after a certain period of time or at a certain time of day.  But, the computers should be left on so that updates and virus scanning can occur late at night or early in the morning.  

Does the technology department provide flash drives to students or staff?

Typically, no.  The Tech Department keeps a small number of flash drives for quick usage, but none to give out to staff or students.

Can I borrow Microsoft Office to install on my home computer?

Yes, if you are a full-time staff member, you can install the Microsoft Office suite of applications on a personal computer for work related usage.  Sorry students, but this is only available to full-time staff members.  To borrow the install discs for installing on your home computer, please see Kathy Schenk (x320) in the Warehouse to sign out a copy.  You will also need to initial and sign a form prior to obtaining the software.  You can currently choose from any of the following versions: Microsoft Office 2003, Microsoft Office 2007, or Microsoft Office 2010.

Can I borrow Microsoft Windows to install on my home computer?

No, the Microsoft Windows operating system is licensed for EHOVE-owned computers only.  We are not able to provide Microsoft Windows XP, Microsoft Windows 7 or any other operating system.

I need to order some DVD's for a project and need to know which format I should purchase?

It depends on what the DVD will be used for and with.  But, a general rule of thumb is that you'll be safe with getting DVD-R's.  DVD-R's are generally more widely supported by most DVD players today.

I am looking at purchasing a new computer for my home, do you have any suggestions on what to buy?

Giving computer buying advice is a lot like giving car buying advice.  There are a lot of makes, models, years and options to choose from.  What makes a computer the best one for you depends on what you need and want.  The most important thing for you to do is to be a smart shopper.  Do some research in Consumer Reports or online reviews before buying.  List some of the features you need so you can be sure you narrow your search when you're shopping around.  If you are the type of person that just needs a computer for using the Internet and checking email, you won't need the most expensive system with all of the bells and whistles out there.  If you are the type to need just a basic computer, then anything that's being sold as a new computer today will probably do just fine for you for the next 3-4 years.  If you are in the market for a laptop, ask yourself first if you actually need to be mobile.  If you are the type of person to take your laptop everywhere with you, you'll want to select a smaller more lightweight laptop or even a netbook (if you don't mind the small keyboard).  Laptops are generally more difficult and expensive to upgrade, so don't skimp on the specs with laptops.  If you want a laptop to last you for more than 4 years, you are going to want to upgrade the memory (RAM) to as much as you can afford.  

Also, another money saving tip is with processors.  Sometimes manufacturers will over a processor at a certain speed and a slightly larger processor for $50 to $200.  If the speed difference is a fraction of a GHz, you probably won't notice much of a difference, and you could save a little money by going with the slower processor.  For example, if you are looking at two different processors with speeds of 2.80 GHz and 3.0 GHz, you would probably not notice the difference in speed between the two.

You can save money by not buying another new monitor.  If you will be replacing your current computer with another one in the same location, you don't need to buy a new monitor if your current one works for you.  If, however, you are adding this new computer as an additional computer, you'll need a separate monitor for the new one.

Is it possible to access my P drive from home?

Yes, via the Citrix Portal.  Log in to the Citrix Portal and click Home Drive on the Applications page.

Is there any way to watch live TV in the classroom?

Yes and no.  There is no cable television piped to the classrooms, however a possible option would be to connect to a website that provides live video feeds from television channels online. 

Is it possible to scan a document in and edit the text?

Yes, this feature is called OCR or optical character recognition.  Most popular scanning programs include this feature or sometimes they just refer to it as scanning in as text.  

I want to rearrange my office. Is it okay to move my computer?

If you are making minor changes that would not involve moving the computer's location, then there should be no problem.  However, if the computer will need to be moved or unhooked, please consult the Tech Department prior to the move.

Why won't my computer turn on?

Check to make sure that your computer’s power cord is plugged into an electrical outlet or a surge protector and make sure that the surge protector is turned on.  Make sure that when you attempt to turn the computer on that you press the appropriate button for the power switch.  Many times a computer may have several buttons on the front of the case, all of which are for different purposes.  Verify that it is the computer that is not turning on and not the monitor.  If the light is on for the computer and you can’t see anything on the screen then check to make sure that the monitor is turned on and the brightness and contrast is also adjusted so that the image on the screen is visible.  If all of these suggestions do not resolve the problem then contact the Tech Department.

How can I find information about the technology in various classrooms and labs?