Author Archives: Nathan Burt

Adobe Creative Cloud 2019 Now Available

We are pleased to let you know that the Adobe Creative Cloud 2019 suite is now available for installation by Middlebury Undergraduate College & Institute faculty & staff*.  New this year is login to the Adobe site, as well as the Adobe Creative Cloud app, on personal computers and computers owned by Middlebury (and assigned to you).  The Adobe Creative Cloud provides easy installation, and several cloud storage features, including fonts & preferences.

Important Note: public computer labs will not have the 2019 version of Adobe Creative Cloud applications until spring or summer of 2019.  To maintain full compatibility with labs and others on campus, you are advised to continue using the Creative Cloud 2018 applications in the interim.  

To maintain compatibility with labs, we recommend first setting your Creative Cloud Preferences (in the Creative Cloud App) to “Show Older Apps”, then click on the down arrow next to Install, select Manage, then Other Versions.  If you pick the newest from the list of Other Versions, that should be a match for our lab installations.  Video instructions.  

How do I install Adobe applications?:

To install the latest versions (if compatibility with others and access via other computers is not a priority), log in at Adobe with your middlebury.edu email credentials.

  1. Click Sign In in the upper-right corner of the web page and use your Middlebury email address and email password to log in.  Select  Enterprise ID if prompted.
  2. Click Download for the Creative Cloud app, then click Save File.
  3. Double-click the Creative_Cloud_Set-Up file in your Downloads folder.
  4. Click Yes to allow the installer to make changes to your computer.
  5. Sign in again using the same credentials as above.
  6. Click Start Installing.
  7. Once the Creative Cloud app installs select the Apps tab.
  8. Select to Install or Update the applications you desire.

Note: Middlebury computers that already have Creative Cloud applications installed may get a message from adobe.com that they cannot download software.  That computer likely 1) does not have the Adobe Creative Cloud App, or 2) may not have the “Apps” option for installing when you are logged in.  These will require an install/reinstall of the Creative Cloud App provided by Information Technology Services.

Once installed, you should be able to install any recommended updates without breaking compatibility, with the exception of Lightroom.  Contact the Service Desk if you require assistance with Lightroom.

Do you have a shared-use computer?  These may require a different process.  Please reach out to us with the number of the computer(s) in question.

Feel free to contact the Service Desk during our open hours if you have questions or encounter any issues during your upgrade process.

*Licensing does not apply to students or to the Schools (Language Schools, Bread Loaf or Schools Abroad).  Adobe software is installed on lab computers.

Important Info about Apple’s Latest OS Offerings

Apple recently released a new iOS version for use on iPads and iPhones, iOS 11. You may experience difficulty connecting to Middlebury College email hosted by Microsoft when using the native iOS Mail and Calendar Apps. ITS recommends you use Outlook for iOS available free in the App Store. Apple and Microsoft are working on a solution.  UPDATE: this issue was resolved with iOS 11.0.1.

Apple also announced the next version of macOS, High Sierra, available 9/25/17. ITS has instituted a block on the installation of this OS on college managed computers until it can be tested with college systems and software. Our High Sierra webpage (http://go.middlebury.edu/highsierra) will provide updates as they become available, including notes about any known issues and resolutions.

Mac Wireless Login

Tired of plugging in Ethernet to update your computer password?  Want to log into a Mac for the first time, but don’t have Ethernet handy?

Middlebury College loaner laptops and Windows 7 laptops have been able to log into the MiddleburyCollege wireless network at the login screen for months.  You will soon be able to do the same from your college-owned Macintosh.  Watch for changes to your login screen, as pictured below.

wi-fi_login_window

If you have any questions, please contact the helpdesk at X2200 or create a Helpdesk ticket.

To upgrade your mac or NOT

Apple is currently offering macOS 10.12 (Sierra) as an update.  ITS does not currently support Sierra and recommends against installing this new operating system at this time.  “Sierra” hasn’t been around long enough to have been thoroughly tested with all applications in use on campus.  Please see http://go.middlebury.edu/sierra for more information.

We recommend upgrading to OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) if you are not already running it; this is currently the preferred operating system for college-owned Macintosh computers.  Older operating systems are not updated; they also may not be able to browse to secure websites, and cannot run the latest version of Microsoft Office.

Caution: Back up your important data before upgrading your operating system!  While we should always keep our information secure, upgrades pose an extra risk of data loss due to the sheer amount of work a hard drive goes through during this process.  Performing an upgrade while on campus, using your Ethernet cable and power supply will provide best results.  To upgrade your system, open the Self Service utility on college-owned Macs, then click on the OS category on the right.

If you have any questions or need help, please create a ticket at http://go.middlebury.edu/whd, and provide the “Property of Middlebury College” number for the computer you are using.

Important software updates

A vulnerability in the Adobe Flash Player software installed on many computers on campus has the potential of allowing a computer to be taken over via an email read (or even previewed) by Outlook.  Information Technology Services typically does not interrupt you for software installations and patching, but the severity of this issue requires immediate action.
ITS will be automatically patching Adobe Flash Player on college computers that have outdated versions installed.  If you are logged into an affected computer, you may see a Dell KACE pop-up window in the lower right corner of your screen indicating the update is being applied.
There are also updates to Office released December 8th by Microsoft to address this vulnerability.  These updates should already have been installed automatically as part of Microsoft Updates.  ITS will check the status of these patches.  This will slow your computer down for about 15 minutes, and you will see a KACE pop-up if your machine is being patched.
This is a good reminder that we are empowered to maintain software on computers that are assigned specifically to us.  Please install all Microsoft, Adobe (and Apple, if you are using a Mac, or Apple software on Windows) patches to keep your computer safe.  While there are occasionally problems introduced by patching, their impact is unlikely to be as severe as a virus infection, or the like.
Please contact the helpdesk if you have any questions or concerns about this update.   802-443-2200, helpdesk@middlebury.edu, or create a ticket at http://go.middlebury.edu/whd (providing us with the “Property of Middlebury College” number of the computer).

Macintosh – Middfiles – Mmmmm… News You Can Use

Mac users…  Are you having the best possible experience with Middfiles?  It may be time to update how you connect to Middfiles, as well as create some useful shortcuts!

First, check your connection.  In the Finder, click on the Go menu, then click Connect to Server.  You should use cifs://middcloud.middlebury.edu/middfiles and remove any “smb” middfiles favorites you may have stored, as shown.

Go>Connect to Server

Removing outdated SMB favorite

Now it’s time to create some powerful Sidebar favorites for easy access to your frequently-used folders (see sample below).  Sidebar favorite locations are visible in all your programs!  Refer to our wiki article for complete details on how to create these favorites & get rid of outdated ones.

Sidebar Favorite Sample

Sidebar Favorite Sample

Technical stuff:  We use the SMB protocol to connect to Middfiles almost exclusively on campus and the latest revision is CIFS.  To use the most current version of SMB you must specify CIFS in your connection.  Outdated connections may results in errors when saving to Middfiles or be slower.

Internet Explorer 9 “update”

It turns out that updating from a very old web browser to a somewhat less old (yet still outdated) web browser is not necessarily as simple as it might be.  For more on this, read on* – but the short version of importance to know is:

Almost all public machines recently received an update from Internet Explorer version 8 to version 9.  Shortcuts, favorites, plugins and the like have been unaffected in all of our testing beforehand.  If you encounter problems or have questions, please pass them on.

 

*Last year INB was approved to run on Internet Explorer 9, and the group policy that blocks IE9 was removed.  As we noticed that computers still were not receiving IE 9 as an update, we found we had a registry entry to modify to undo the group policy block that had been applied.  As of that time, anyone running Microsoft Update should receive the IE9 update.

Our computer labs do not run the regular Microsoft Updates, though, since most users do not have administrative privileges on those computers.  Dell KACE applies critical Microsoft Updates on a regular basis – but IE9 is no longer in that update list (as it has been replaced by IE10 & IE11).  So, a manual installation has also been set up for this purpose.

Now’s the Time to Update Your OS & Apps: New Vulnerabilities Announced

burglarApple recently released software updates to iOS, Mac OS 10.7 and higher, as well as for Safari & QuickTime for Windows.  These updates address a vulnerability found in Apple’s implementation of SSL (secure sockets layer), a protocol computers use extensively for secure communications online.  While we are not aware of any specific information breaches at Middlebury College, and the steps necessary for someone to compromise these secure communications are far from trivial, we should all apply these important security patches to our Apple hardware and Windows computers running Apple software to mitigate these risks.  Please check your Apple software for available updates (especially iOS, Mac OS, Safari, and QuickTime updates).  Run your updates now and check again after the installation as some may have prerequisites.  For more information, links to specific updates for the SSL vulnerability and others are available at http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1222.