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LAS IT Managed Computer Program

What does it mean for my computer to be managed?

We are asked by faculty and staff “Why does my computer need to be managed? I don’t want someone controlling my computer.” We understand that having anyone else do anything to your computer feels like a loss of control. Stating that it is University policy to have managed computers does not make anyone feel better or create a level of trust that is needed for the managed system to work. We hope that our explanation helps faculty and staff understand and appreciate why a managed computer is better for individuals and the collective good of all who use the campus network.

A managed computer provides the user with more control over the physical device and the contents on that device. This is done by connecting the computer to a system which provides access to the resources such as files and printers, that are available locally and on the network, and manages who has access to those resources. The system, known as Active Directory or “the AD,” assists with ensuring that data is protected from loss, and that devices are protected from threats.

How does AD work?

The AD works by acting as a library organizing users and resources (printers, folders, etc), and providing a means for granting access only to those approved by the owners of those resources.

What are the benefits?

  • Improved data protection of the contents on the computer
  • Improved security of the computers by automatically patching and updating software
  • Reduction of threats from viruses and malware
  • Ease of resource sharing
  • Simplification of connection to shared folders and printers
  • Enables local IT staff to focus on discipline-specific research and instructional projects