IT Resources for Faculty

IT Resources for Faculty

Please contact sciences@help.ncsu.edu if you would like consulting or more information about available resources. There are a lot of IT services offered at NC State and this page highlights a few. We can connect you with university and third-party resources to assist with teaching, research, and day-to-day technology needs.

Data Backups

Sciences IT can consult with you to find the best solution for your situation, contact help@sciences.ncsu.edu.

There’s a lot of work to be done to address data backups, and there’s no comprehensive solution particularly for big data needs yet. However, there is an option that is reasonable for moderate amounts of data that don’t require a rapid restore. The university has CrashPlan ProE, a cloud-based data back solution available for Mac, Windows and Linux. The cost is $75.96 per year, per user. Each user can install the backup agent on up to 4 computers. There is unlimited storage for the backup. All data is stored in the United States. After a user leaves the university, the backup is retained for approximately a year and can be restored by system administrators. For information on ordering a license or using the software, contact help@sciences.ncsu.edu

You have unlimited space in Google Drive. You can use a Team Drive to store data in a location where a group of people can “own” it, thus avoiding the problem of tying the data to a single individual’s account. If you are storing large amounts of data, be aware that it can be very slow to get the data back out of Google Drive.

Amazon Web Services offers Glacier for cold data storage, which is best suited for archiving data for long-term storage. It is inexpensive to store data. It can be relatively expensive to retrieve data, so it’s not the best for storing data you expect to have to restore with any regularity. Amazon has a way to get large amounts of data into the cloud using secure, rugged hard drives that can be shipped to them (the Snowball service.) Sciences IT can help you determine if this is the best solution and can assist with setup, contact help@sciences.ncsu.edu.

For research data, OIT is working on a service to provide long-term backed-up data storage for faculty with grants, and are offering 1 TB per project. However, there have been considerable challenges accessing this storage outside of the OIT HPC environment, which they are working on. Contact hpc@help.ncsu.edu for more information.

There other solutions as well. We maintain a server room in Cox Hall which can be used for storing equipment used for backups, and there may be other alternatives depending on your situation. We are glad to consult to help you find the right solution.

 

High Performance Computing

We provide consulting on scientific computing. We can help with getting time on the supercomputers in the national laboratories, coordinating with OIT regarding their HPC services, assessing the viability of using cloud services to run HPC workloads, and identifying appropriate equipment if a local cluster is required. Contact sciences@help.ncsu.edu

The Office of Information Technology (OIT) offers a shared high performance computing cluster for use by faculty. There is no longer a charge for this service. Faculty can add their students to projects. Additionally, faculty can purchase nodes for the cluster for which they will have first priority. This cluster is a shared resource, so should not be considered a development environment. For more information about OIT HPC, see https://projects.ncsu.edu/hpc/main.php

We can assist investigating the use of cloud resources for HPC needs. If you are interested in pursuing a pilot or learning more about costs and discounts for cloud services, please contact help@sciences.ncsu.edu

Software

We can assist with software acquisition, including licensing and compliance. Software installed on university-owned computers that requires you to accept license terms (“click-wraps” that require you to agree to Terms & Conditions or a Privacy Policy) must be reviewed and approved by OIT. This is a quick and easy process for software with license costs less than $5,000.

You can see a list of software that has already been approved at https://software.ncsu.edu/software-licensing-management/clickwraps/reviewed-clickwraps/

The university has site-licensed many software packages. You can find downloads and information on acquiring site-licensed software at http://software.ncsu.edu

Software that costs more than $5,000 is required to undergo a security and an accessibility review. Purchasing will work with OIT to ensure this is complete before software is purchased.

Microsoft Office

For university-owned computers, you should contact your local technical support staff for assistance if you have a managed system (e.g., one that is in Active Directory or Casper.) If you have an unsupported or unmanaged computer, you can get access to the university’s Office downloads at  https://software.ncsu.edu/faculty-staff-university/microsoft-office/

Through Office 365, every university user is entitled to five free copies of Microsoft Office for Windows or Mac for use on personally-owned computers. To download your copies, go http://office365.ncsu.edu

Training and Workshops

You can find free training and workshops on a variety of technology-related software and services at:

https://reporter.ncsu.edu

Topics range from Moodle and WordPress to Google Apps and two-factor authentication.