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Switch to Exchange e-mail begins
for Academic and Research Computing
While more than 10,000 e-mail recipients have already made the switch
to Exchange, another 5,800 IMAP users are expected to do so in the next
six weeks, according to Kurt Nendorf, director of infrastructure
services for the Office of the CIO.
“Next week, or so, we will begin converting the IMAP users,” said Chris
Williamson, customer services manager for OCIO, and point person for
the transition. She’s had to make adjustments since the big push to
switch GroupWise came last October.
“October was a learning experience for us. We were flooded with calls
from people with questions about the new mail system. Most of the calls
involved where to find items that had been moved. While the Help Desk
was able to handle the vast majority of these calls, we learned what to
look for during the next round of updates. Since then, we have added
additional Help Desk staff, and we’re ready for the next batch of
questions when we begin the IMAP transition. IMAP mail is the system
used by such clients as Mulberry, Apple Mail, Thunderbird, and Mozilla,
“While almost all GroupWise users were Windows users, IMAP users
comprise both Windows and Macintosh users, and we’ve taken care to
prepare information for both of these systems users,” said Williamson.
W. Roger Poston II, director of academic and research computing
services, also under the OCIO, reinforced Williamson’s statement.
“Macintosh users are just as important to us as Windows users, and
we’re committed to producing resources (printed, web-based and
training) that address their needs. We have recently posted a
comprehensive document for setting up a Macintosh on Exchange. You can
find it at http://www.musc.edu/infoservices/exchange/entourage/.”
The main clients for Exchange server mail connections will be Outlook
for Windows and Entourage for Macintoshes. While the two programs are
similar, they are not functionally equivalent. There will be some
things Outlook Exchange users will be able to do that Entourage users
can’t, and some things Entourage Exchange users can do that Outlook
users can’t. But all Exchange users will have mail, address books,
contacts, and calendars available.
Frank C. Clark, Ph.D., vice president of information technology and
chief information officer recommended the move from two separate
systems to a single, integrated e-mail/calendaring system. The MUSC
Information Technology Governance Council and the Vice Presidents Group
approved the recommendation.
“We wanted three things out of our new e-mail system. First, it had to
be industry standard and in widespread use. Second, it had to be
multiplatform. Finally, it had to be scalable in a financially
reasonable way,” said Clark.
IMAP users should have an easier time with the concepts of Exchange
mail than did the GroupWise users. That’s not to say IMAP users won’t
have to make a few adjustments. They will be introduced to time quotas
as well as size quotas. They will have to move their personal address
books and contacts to another format. They will have to learn a new way
to archive or create long-term storage for those files that will
be important for months or years ahead.
“We learned a lot from listening to those who have already made the
transition,” said Williamson. “We now have in place several strategies
for making the IMAP user’s transition as simple as possible.
“First there’s the move itself. Users will get a detailed e-mail notice
telling them when they are moving and what steps to take immediately
after they’ve moved. We’ve also made provisions for special ‘managed
folders’ to show up on new accounts that will contain the files from
their previous e-mail programs.
“Then we have the Help Desk (792-9700) fully staffed and ready to
answer any questions new users might have. Also, we will have a
Web site in place that will give detailed information to both
Windows and Macintosh users. Finally, we will schedule a series of
training sessions for those who need more information on the new
system,” said Williamson.
Information on Exchange, including class schedules, can be found at http://www.musc.edu/infoservices/exchange.
Friday, Feb. 22, 2008
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