Have you noticed the small black boxes that replaced the traditional CPU’s in many areas of the library? These thin clients don’t have a hard drive and rely on the Villanova servers for all the “heavy lifting” that a CPU used to do. Users can save their work to a networked drive (usually the N drive), a flash drive or using cloud-based storage services like Dropbox, iCloud or Google Drive. Google gives you 15 gb; a larger cloud comes with a price tag.
The other new service on campus is vDesktop. According to Henry Heincer and Jill Morrison, UNIT Support Services, “vDesktop is UNIT’s virtual desktop technology that provides access to a high performing virtual machine through a variety of devices. vDesktop allows users to access Windows and various software applications via any computer with an internet connection. The operating system, apps, and data are streamed directly from Villanova’s data center. ”
In addition to the standard Microsoft Office Suite, users can also access:
- Fathom 2
- Minitab 16
- SigmaPlot 12.5
- Wolfram Mathematica 9
- Microsoft Publisher
- Google Chrome
- Mozilla Firefox
- Microsoft Expression web 4
- Endnote X5
Engineering students and faculty have access to a tailored version of vDesktop with specialized applications.
There is an FAQ page on the UNIT website that can answer all your questions about vDesktop.
Article by Luisa Cywinski, writer, Communication and Service Promotion Team, and team leader, Access Services Team.
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