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Computing Facilities and Resources on Campus
Wednesday, August 25, 2021 - 16:21
Welcome (back) to campus, Panthers! For all the students who are new to Pitt and all the students who haven’t been on campus in over a year, here’s a Pitt IT 101 crash course on all the computing facilities on campus.
Student Computing Labs
Find all of the computing labs on the Interactive Lab Status Map. It displays the location of every lab on campus and indicates (by color) if they are open. When you click on a location, a pop-up lists how many workstations are available. If you click the lab name in the pop-up, it pulls up a detailed lab map that shows each workstation, which operating system it uses (Windows or Mac), and whether it is in use.
Many of the Student Computing Labs have specialized spaces, including:
- Collaboration Rooms provide group seating, outlets, a privacy door, a large display screen, and dry erase boards for group project work. Collaboration rooms are located in the Alumni and David Lawrence labs—they can be reserved online.
- Classroom Labs are used for courses that require hands-on computer work. The G-62 Cathedral and Bellefield labs can be reserved by instructors using the classroom reservation system.
- Extra-Space Workstations give ample room to spread out your books, papers, and other materials. They are in every lab except the Bellefield classroom lab.
- Dual-Monitor Stations are ideal for complex or detailed work that requires viewing multiple windows simultaneously. They are in the Alumni, Benedum, Sutherland and G-27 Cathedral labs.
Virtual Computing Lab
Maybe you’d rather work from your room, so you don’t have to wear a mask or can listen to music without headphones. Or perhaps you’d like to sit outside and work in the fresh air. Just connect to the Virtual Computing Lab to turn your personal device into a lab machine using Microsoft Remote Desktop. You can access the full desktop version of all lab software from anywhere with internet access.
Printers and Scanners
Pitt is working to become a carbon-neutral campus, so Pitt IT makes it easy to go digital. But when you need a hard copy, there are black and white Pitt Print Stations in all the labs and in most residence halls, academic buildings, and administrative buildings. There are color printers and black-and-white multi-function printers in select labs and several other locations. The multi-function printers can copy, print from USB, scan to email or USB, and of course print like any other printer. Just send a print job to the Pitt Print queue from any device. Then go to any printer and print it out by swiping your ID, using Touchless Printing through the Pharos Print app, or—if you forgot everything else—just type in your Pitt username and password.
Sometimes you need a hard copy of a digital file, and sometimes you need to go the other way around! There are scanners attached to select computers in most computing labs, in addition to multi-function printers that can scan to email or USB (fat32).
Between smart phones, tablets and laptops, many students don’t need a lab computer to get work done. But sometimes you need a quiet and comfortable place to work, a reliable power source, or a bigger screen.
Pitt IT maintains Mobile Computing Stations, where you can set up your laptop or mobile device. The labs at Alumni, G-27 Cathedral, Benedum, and David Lawrence all have mobile computing counters, while G-25 Cathedral is a dedicated Mobile Computing Lab. Each station has USB and AC outlets, so you can charge while working. If you need a full-size monitor, G-27 Cathedral and David Lawrence labs also have 27-inch 4K monitor stations that you can connect your device to using an HDMI cable. (The labs have mini-HDMI and USB 3.0 cables you can borrow.)
Need to charge your phone or tablet while you’re working? Mobile Charging Stations are located in all the labs, the William Pitt Union, Hillman Library, and at the Drop-In Support Desks at the University Store on Fifth and Litchfield Towers lobby. Charging stations are equipped with Apple lightning, micro USB, and USB-C cables to charge a variety of devices. In addition, each lab has USB and AC power at select workstations.
The 24/7 IT Help Desk lets you talk with a Pitt IT consultant at any time, day or night. They are available by phone, live chat, email, or by submitting a help ticket online.
But there are certain issues that just require hands-on help. Drop-In Support provides live, face-to-face help during select hours for a variety of needs ranging from getting your device set up to removing viruses or repairing your operating system. If the work will take a while, you can drop off your device at the University Store on Fifth and pick it up when it’s ready. Drop-In Support is available in the Litchfield Towers lobby and the University Store on Fifth.
You can purchase discounted computers from dell.com/pitt, and most software can be downloaded at no cost from the Software Download Center. In addition to Pitt IT’s Drop-In Support, the University Store on Fifth’s Tech @ Fifth department also offers a separate sales department for devices and accessories and a Repair Center during normal University Store hours.
Looking for Wi-Fi service at Pitt? It’s pretty much everywhere. The Pittsburgh residence halls use MyResNet. Regional campus residence halls and all academic and administrative buildings use PittNet. PittNet is also available in a variety of outdoor locations and on University shuttles. Your guests can also get free wireless access through one of Pitt’s guest Wi-Fi options.
Now that you have an overview of your on-campus IT facilities, get out there and start computing!
-- By Karen Beaudway, Pitt IT Blogger