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Computing at Muskingum Q&A

What is Muskingum University's computer philosophy?

Muskingum University strongly believes that one aspect of an education is access to information and resources. Much of that information can be accessed on our campus network and the Internet.

Muskingum University does not require students to own computers, but we do encourage students to consider ownership. Access to the campus network is available through either a wired or wireless connection.  In addition, students have access to a number of computer labs on campus.

Will my student need an e-mail account or will the university provide one?

All students are provided electronic accounts (email, Blackboard, MuskieLink) for their use while a student at Muskingum. While students frequently have other e-mail or web identities, all official Muskingum University electronic communication is sent to the student’s Muskingum email account. While having more than one electronic identity is fine, it is imperative that the student use their Muskingum identity for internal communication and that they read it often.

What kind of computers should incoming students have? What about current students?

We recommend that incoming students arrive with the right equipment (see the following information), and we also encourage current students to consider upgrading older computers before the start of the next academic year to ensure their hardware and software remain current for today's computing needs.

Is it easy to connect to the campus network?

After either connecting to the wireless network or plugging into the ethernet jack in their room, the student should open a web browser and access any web page.  The computer will be automatically directed to the policy management server which will guide the student through the steps necessary to reguster their computer. This registration process will check for the correct operating system (including any necessary updates) and for current and subscribed virus protection. Once the registration process completes successfully, the student will have full access to the campus network and the internet. Please read and review our "ResNet" pages for additional information and Frequently Asked Questions about connecting to the campus network?

Is help available if I need it?

For assistance, you can call CNS (740-826-8050), send an email message to cns@muskingum.edu or stop by our offices, room 331 in the Boyd Science Center.  If you are bringing your laptop into our offices, please bring your power adapter with you.

What if we need to connect multiple devices into the ethernet port?

While there is only one ethernet port available in most rooms on campus, students may purchase small switches to expand the port count in their room. The Muskingum University Bookstore will have switches available at a very competitive price, which will include the network cable necessary to connect the device to the network port. If you bring your own switch, please remember that most commercially sold devices do NOT include this cable as part of the purchase. Because Muskingum’s network is not similar to a home network, devices designed for home application, known as routers, are not appropriate for use. Therefore, we ask that you do not bring routers to campus. Some rooms do feature a “port-per-pillow” configuration. Students should verify the room configuration before making any purchases.

What about Home Networking devices for Broadband Connections?

Because Muskingum’s network is not similar to a home network, devices designed for home application are not appropriate for use. In particular, devices such as routers and wireless access points are strictly forbidden on campus.

Is wireless connectivity available on campus?

Wireless access is available in all college owned residence units and all academic buildings.

What kind of software does Muskingum use?

The institution primarily uses the Microsoft Office Suite for word processing, spreadsheet, database, and presentation applications. This software is available for use in all of the computer labs on campus.

What versions of Microsoft software are used in the university's computer labs?

Because it is our standard, Microsoft Office 2016 has been installed in all computer labs.

What about Macintosh Computers and Linux Operating Systems?

Both Macintosh (at least version 10.9 "Mavericks") and Linux systems will work on the campus network.

What about my game console?

Game consoles are acceptable for use in your residence hall and must be registered for use online. The RESNET home page has more information about this process.

What other considerations should I account for when configuring a computer?

Just like a stereo, computer sound has the potential to cause conflicts between roommates. For this reason, we recommend the use of headphones instead of speakers for computer related audio output. None of our public computer labs have speakers, thus students are responsible for providing and using a personal pair of headphones.

Does the University have minimum recommendations for incoming student computers?

For the purchase of a new computer please select a reputable computer manufacturer. We recommend that, should you be considering a used computer, you should compare the processor specifications with those of a newly available computer. Our minimum recommendations includes the following:
  • Processor Brand: Intel or AMD
  • Processor Cores: At least 4 cores
  • Processor speed: 3.0 GHz or higher (1.8 GHz or higher for laptops)
  • 8 GB RAM Memory
  • 500 Gigabyte Hard Drive
  • 8 GB (or greater) USB Flash Memory Stick
  • Wired and/or wireless Ethernet Network capability.  Remember to bring an ethernet cable if you want to use the wired network.
  • 19" display (14" display adequate for a laptop)
  • Sound Card and Headphones
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7, 8 or 10 (no starter editions)
  • Fully subscribed virus protection software (no trial versions).

PLEASE NOTE: These recommendations have been set to insure student's computers will be compatible with the network and remain a useful learning tool for the duration of their full four year tenure at Muskingum University. Students whose computers do not meet these standards run a high risk of not being able to connect to Muskingum network resources.

Warning! Many computer vendors offer low-end, low-cost systems for under $500. However, be cautious when considering these systems since many times the processor and memory included in these systems is below our minimum recommendation.