What is the first thing you think about when I say »school« and »notebook«? If you are like me, that surely isn’t some fancy pocket computer but an old-fashioned paper notebook, a thing of the past, something a student of the new Internet Generation would know nothing about. If I was happy with a pen and a piece of paper, students today need computers, tablets and smartphones. New technology is pouring in and for fifteen years people have been arguing that the digital revolution will challenge many fundamental aspects of the university, and big university campuses would be “relics” within thirty years. Yet, today college and university attendance is at an all-time high. IES National Center for Education Statistics reports that the number of students enrolling in degree-granting institutions in the USA rose a little less than 51 percent from 1979-80 to 2005-6 from 11,57 mio to 17,49 mio.
Students and professors can use software for online events, meetings and desktop sharing like ISL Online.
There is no question that higher education is heavily reliant on information technology. Virtually every function and process in institutions of higher education is controlled or operated by IT systems — whether it be laboratory experiments, research simulations, classroom teaching, building management, or general administration. But was the surge in university students also followed by improvements in the constantly evolving information technology? It shouldn’t come as a surprise if information technology hasn’t received the same attention as the number of students in the classroom. But on the other hand, as an effective use of the advanced technology seems to be a relevant differentiating factor when choosing the right higher education institution, universities seem to have adopted quite a great deal of tech advances.
As a longstanding provider of online collaboration and remote support software products, we have witnessed a changing demand for such products in the last ten years. If our customers started almost exclusively as IT companies remotely supporting their software users, then ten years later a lot of universities seem to need remote access and tech support products as well. I guess it would be ironic if in the era of seemingly ubiquitous remote collaboration products and fast Internet, an IT administrator, sweaty from running 3 miles and jumping staircases, would inconspicuously enter the classroom and take care of the professor’s computer right there in front of an army of discontent students.
That is why every IT leader of the university should recognize critical points where the faculty, students and staff should have access to the kind of technology services that will help the faculty in their research, improve the quality of classes, and the students devote more time to learning. In our case, a more elegant and cost-effective solution would be a “Remote Help” button on a computer desktop. To buzz for IT support, the professor would click on it, and wait a few minutes until the problem was fixed through remote desktop connection.
The problem that IT leaders stumble upon is to get a suiting service that will answer different needs of the university faculty, students and staff and be compatible with different computer platforms. Some faculty and staff members prefer standard desktop Windows PCs while others want nothing else but Mac and Linux computers. Students on the other hand gravitate more towards modern mobile devices like tablets, smartphones and laptops. Then again, while average students in today’s Internet Generation crave for innovative technologies in the study place, professors usually avoid them.
Simple Tech Support for All
ISL Online’s remote desktop and tech support software offers a dead easy service which starts desktop sharing in seconds, and is usually accepted by its users immediately after deployment. The user friendly software has gained trust and popularity among higher education institutions over the past years. In Spain alone more than 10 universities introduced ISL Online’s remote desktop support in 2010.
With the use of ISL Online, IT support staff and helpdesks can gain control of a remote PC, Mac, and Linux computer over the Internet or LAN within a few mouse-clicks without installations and configurations. Besides the more basic functionality, like desktop control, file transfer and tight security, ISL Online offers software customization, user management, external authentication, and simple support start options.
Students, faculty and other staff with a computer problem can initiate an IT support session through a Web chat on the university’s (internal) website, where they can quickly inform the administrator of a computer error and then accept his/her invitation to a desktop control service. Although that is by far the easiest and highly adoptable option to start a remote support session on the fly, the administrator can also email an invitation to desktop control, or pass a session code to the person with a computer trouble.
Once the desktop control service is started, the set of features enables efficient and fast remote IT support:
– No installations
– Connect even behind a firewall, NAT proxies
– Windows, Mac, Linux, Windows Mobile, iOS (soon)
– System information of the remote computer
– ISSC Turbo Desktop Sharing
– Full control over remote computer
– Reboot and resume, Ctrl+Alt+Del
– Switch between multiple monitors
– Screen resolution adjusted automatically
– Integrated VoIP, video, chat
– File Transfer
– Session recording
– Symmetrical AES-256 encryption security
– Applications’ skin and texts customizable
– Local language – 30 GUI translations
– User management, reports
Deploying ISL Online inside a university infrastructure requires just one day. As ad-hoc remote IT support doesn’t require installation, time is mostly spent on managing, training and educating staff about the new service and promoting it among future users.
All IT supporters can be managed from the admin account, whose owner can easily create, manage and delete their user accounts, granting them rights and setting limitations regarding available software functionality. If the university already uses.
Radius, Active Directory, LDAP or other central directories, then IT supporters can keep ISL Online login credentials synchronized with their existing ones by enabling external authentication.
Once the first part – introducing, managing and training, is done, the university’s IT support leader can customize helpdesk and client applications to uniform them with the corporate graphic identity. Both applications can adopt the university’s look by adding a new logo, changing texts, skin colour, and even adjusting software functionality a bit, e.g. desktop sharing can be started right after establishing a remote connection.
Best Support Service
Practically every university that has decided to deploy ISL Online collaboration and remote support services, choose the unlimited Corporate Server License. This packet doesn’t restrict users in terms of the number of active sessions giving them the right to make 100, 1,000, or even 10,000 a day. It also doesn’t apply any restrictions in regards to who uses the software. Thus, anybody inside the university can use remote support without limitations. Big universities even went for the cloud technology upgrade, connecting several in-house servers with Corporate Server License installation and applying the ISL Online cloud computing technologies along with all benefits of a private cloud network.
– fault tolerance
– load-balancing mechanisms
– distributed session roaming
– independent of the central server
One-click remote support service
»Bottom line is to provide the faculty, students and staff, who encounter an incovenient computer problem, an emergency button,« explains ISL Online’s CEO Jure Pompe. »When something goes wrong with the computer, a person simply clicks the ISL Online’s »Live Support« button, enters a Web chat with the IT support office, shortly explains the problem, and approves remote desktop connection if needed. The issue is resolved right there from the helpdesk office through cost-efficient remote desktop control. Easy, right?«