From the monthly archives: April, 2012
We are pleased to present below all posts archived in 'April, 2012'. If you still can't find what you are looking for, try using the search box.
By taking 5 minutes to prioritize your district's technology it will allow us to assist you to better understand your technology spend, processes and and savings, while the cost of running a district continues to escalate.
Questeq has been the educated choice for 30 years, providing innovative technology solutions and savings to districts of all sizes. As a partner, you will see that our depth and knowledge is unrivaled in K-12. We understand that the challenge of running a district has never been greater. That is why we take great pride in helping you to evaluate your technology initiatives to continue to inspire and educate children.
Please view the video below to hear how this No-Cost Technology Priorities Assessment can benefit your school district.
Then complete the assessment by clicking the button below.
One of the common blunders for office and home PC buying is not buying Microsoft Office up-front with a system. Pretty much everyone will need Word & Excel at some point, let’s face it. However, what a lot of buyers don’t understand is that if they buy their Office software up-front, with the initial PC purchase, it is discounted as an OEM package. (Meaning, “Original Equipment Manufacturer provided software.”) Depending on what MS Office package you purchase, it will be discounted up-front with a new PC purchase by $50 to $80 over what you would pay at a storefront for the same programs later. That will always save money over having to buy the full packaged product at the storefront later, so always take advantage of OEM software pricing when you buy a new PC.
Nathan Watt is a Senior Desktop Engineer for West Allegheny School District. He has been working with Questeq for 11 years and with West Allegheny since 2005. On a daily basis, Nathan is responsible for hardware and software support of classroom computers and labs, interactive whiteboards and projectors, and curriculum-specific software deployment and maintenance.
Ron Main, Chairman of the Board has this to say about Nathan.
"Nathan symbolizes the essence of Questeq’s belief that our most important strength is in our employees and their commitment to delivering quality customer satisfaction. Nathan has been consistent over the past 11 years in delivering the highest level customer satisfaction."
At West Allegheny, Nathan was recently involved in implementing iPhones as a replacement for the district's Blackberry phones. He says, “Using ActiveSync to synchronize contacts and calendars has been a big step forward compared to the previous method of physically connecting a phone to a computer to transfer information.”
He continues, regarding educational trends, “There is a lot of interest recently in tablets and how they can be used in the classroom. The form factor is appealing and touchscreens provide a unique form of interaction to engage students.”
Nathan strives to support the teachers and students at West Allegheny and recently exceeded his daily responsibilities by completing the Safari Montage Dealer Technical Training Certification. Nathan is also a Microsoft Certified Professional.
Sonicwall’s Network Security Appliance allows for granular content filtering in an educational environment. Having a “one size fits all” filtering policy is a thing of the past. Many districts have the capability to set multiple policies with their existing Sonicwall infrastructure simply by upgrading firmware and reconfiguring. This allows for varying policies to be applied to end users, depending on who is logged on to a computer.
This is a great feature in education as there can be great resources available to a teacher on a website that may also contain content not appropriate for students. With multiple content filtering policies you are able to apply a less restrictive policy to the teacher and a more restrictive policy to the student depending on their membership of a group. Now the teacher has the capability to show a youtube.com video on history to the class without giving students access to the same site.
These end user accounts are authenticated via LDAP using a Sonicwall SSO agent. It is recommended that you run at least two agents, possibly more depending on the number of users in your environment. These can be installed on physical or virtual server which does not have to be dedicated to run this agent. These agents then probe for user information using NetAPI and DC security logs which is cross-referenced with the filtering groups that have been created for this configuration. There are multiple options for authenticating these users but I have found this setup to work best in most environments.
You can also apply a policy to a tablet or non-domain laptop using the device’s IP address. However this can become time consuming if more than a dozen devices are on your network. In this scenario you can apply policy based on an IP range. If the wireless infrastructure supports it, you could have a public network that gets a default, more restrictive policy applied. Then also have an approved guest network that applies a less restrictive policy. These two broadcasts could then be given specific IP ranges which are referenced by the Sonicwall to apply the appropriate policy.
Director of Technology