Information Technology Services (ITS) Q2 2019 Highlights

Exciting enhancement and project releases highlight 2019 Q2 ITS progress. These upgrades and initiatives increased security in multiple areas, prepared us for a disaster, and increased efficiencies. Faculty, staff, and students all benefit from these ITS accomplishments.

Annual Refresh

Every year ITS partners with Administration & Finance (A&F), Student Affairs & Enrollment Management (SAEM), Advancement, and UCorp in order to identify and replace outdated equipment and ensure that our computers are compatible with the latest technology and security. ITS facilitated the order processing for over 220 computers in this year’s refresh, and the ITS Endpoint Management team has begun distributing this equipment. As part of this year’s refresh, ITS will also be introducing the latest build of Windows 10, as well as the 2019 version of the Adobe software suite.

Departmental Share Drive Upgrade & Scale Out

Departmental share drives allow users to store files on a convenient mapped drive so they can easily collaborate with their department colleagues. Files on the departmental shares are backed up daily, with self-service restoration so that users can recover what they need quickly. ITS recently upgraded the departmental share drives to improve security, performance, and capacity. The transparent replacement of the entire underlying hardware system ensures continued reliability.

Disaster Recovery Site

ITS built a disaster recovery (DR) site at CSU Sacramento to ensure that our most critical services are up and running in the event of a disaster. A DR site is a facility which is physically separate from SF State where campus can continue to provide IT services if the primary on-campus data center is unavailable. Core services like the SF State website, email, and the SF State Global Login (required for email access) can resume service in a matter of minutes in such an event. In July 2019 we leveraged these and other available services at the DR site after a pipe burst and flooded the on-campus data center.

Metabim Rollout

Facilities Services rolled out Metabim, its new work order system, and needed to implement a compatible mobile device solution. ITS recommended cellular-enabled iPad Mini 5s as the work order system requires a network connection. In areas where there is no SF State WiFi coverage, the device can defer to a cellular connection. ITS manages the devices using a Mobile Device Management (MDM) system called JAMF, which allows ITS to centrally manage updates to this iPad fleet.

These mobile devices were chosen to provide convenience for Facilities Staff when accessing the system, which is a very important part of their day-to-day tasks. The iPad Minis allow staff to be able to receive work orders and complete their work wherever they are on campus.

OnBase Upgrade

The ITS OnBase team, in collaboration with our Infrastructure and Database teams, upgraded the database and file storage systems for OnBase. We also completed the migration to OnBase 16 and retired our OnBase 13 environment. In addition, we increased the Confidential Data security in OnBase by upgrading the encryption and implementing Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for all users. This was a large project involving many teams across ITS, most of all the ITS Service Desk teams and compatibility testers across campus, all of whom were integral to the success of the upgrade.

PeopleTools 8.56 Upgrade 

SF State performed a mandatory upgrade of PeopleTools to version 8.56 for Campus Solutions from May 24-27, 2019. This technology powers all PeopleSoft platforms that the University utilizes: Campus Solutions (CS), Human Resources (HR), and Common Management System (CMS). This upgrade was necessary since Oracle ended Critical Patch Support for version 8.55.

The CSU Chancellor's Office postponed the upgrade for the Common Financial System (CFS) due to resource constraints. Common Management System will therefore remain on PeopleTools 8.55 this year.

In 2020, all three PeopleSoft platforms, CS/HR/CMS, will be upgraded to PeopleTools 8.57.

Refreshed Websites for Procurement and Basic Needs

The Drupal 8 Web Content Management platform has been updated to enable new features which allow site builders to customize their sites without any coding knowledge. Drupal 8 offers significant improvements to the authoring experience, allowing site owners to update and maintain their sites with ease. In Q2, ITS launched two refreshed websites using Drupal 8 – Procurement and Basic Needs! These are amongst the first sites to use Drupal 8 as a part of our pilot program on campus. Our pilot includes developing and categorizing a robust set of ready-to-use configurable web page templates across the different types of campus units, creating training materials, and holding design advisory meetings. ITS will update campus about the Drupal 8 rollout as it progresses.

SF State Mobile App New Features

At the end of April 2019, ITS rolled out two new features available to students on the SF State Mobile Application. Students can now easily view their Degree Progress Report (DPR), which shows details on the General Education (GE) and the fulfillment of major requirements, including in progress work. In addition, students can view their current and future Enrollment Dates to register for classes. Enrollment Dates are available under Register in the Current Student view.

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for CFS

As a result of a 2016 security audit, Information Technology Services introduced Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) on May 15, 2019 for users logging into the Common Financial System (CFS) web application. 2FA technology provides a secondary authentication factor in addition to a user’s credentials (user name and password). This method of authenticating reduces the risk of a data breach by mitigating the likelihood of compromised user credentials. Users new to 2FA can self-provision 2FA by following the instructions found at https://its.sfsu.edu/guides/2fa.

Wednesday, August 07, 2019