DHCP-coming in 2012
Over the next several months, OIT will develop and implement a plan to convert all wired network connections managed by IT to a DHCP environment. This means that departments will no longer have to request an IP and manually configure a device to connect to the wired network.
DHCP technology is certainly not new. Currently, wireless networking across campus utilizes dynamic addressing as does the wired network in the Residence Halls and Fraternity Houses. So why does our wired network still use Static Assignments?
In order to maintain the security of our network, we must be able to identify each device on our network and associate that device to an authorized individual. A stranger should not be able to wander into a building and gain access to our network unimpeded! With our wireless network, authentication is required before any access is granted. In order to produce the same type of security on the wired network, a registration process must be included.
However, not all devices can support this registration process. Printers, Card readers, servers, fire alarms, sprinklers and other networked devices will still require a static address. Therefore, these devices must first be identified and provided static addresses under the new addressing format. As most of the computers are configured to print directly to an IP address, this will also require modifications to the printer configuration from each desktop! In addition, several resources such as library journals are restricted to certain IP addresses. So careful planning and coordination is required!
In addition, many faculty and staff use Remote Desktop connections to access their office machines while off campus. This service will still be available; however the process will change slightly. Instead of using the IP address for the connection, faculty or staff will use the computer name.
Although this change will be highly visible and require changes on all IT managed computers, it is a critical change for our computing environment. Many of the technology solutions developed today require a DHCP environment. These include desktop virtualization, VOIP and other services. In order to continue to offer new services and solutions for the University, we must convert our wired network to dynamic addressing.
The project team is currently discussing the various configuration options and deployment strategies for this project. The implementation plan will be made available by March 2012. At that time, more specific details regarding the registration process, remote desktop and printer instructions will be released.
Email Consolidation Projects Nearing Completion
The final clean up tasks are underway to complete the Email Unification project. Over the past two years, all email accounts from Lyle, Cox, Physics, and ISEM were migrated to the centrally managed email server. As the year ends, this project will reach 100% completion. Thanks to everyone involved for supporting this important initiative.