CBL's Beavan Hall
IT

The CBL IT Department provides end to end infrastructure support of all data networking, lab sponsored collaborative file and web servers, telephone, video teleconferencing (distance education and distance meeting) plus AV support at the facility. The department is staffed with three IT professionals. All of the IT staff are cross-trained and generally available to handle a range of IT support services at the facility.

The IT department can be contacted either by email via our feedback mechanism for standard Helpdesk support or directly by phone with our frontline support staff at x345. Telephone issues should be addressed either by email to telephone-issues or by phone at x237. We also invite all to visit the campus intranet website as well which again contains news and FAQ's plus links to all of the services described below.

The facility maintains a high speed link into the UMATS/MDREN University of Maryland network which itself provides not only inter-campus connections but as well provides connectivity to the commercial internet ("I1") and high speed university backbone ("I2"); the facility here also maintains a backup connection to UMATS/MDREN as a failover should the primary one be compromised. A state of the art firewall with IDS capability sits between the UMATS/MDREN links and the facility backbone LAN. This campus backbone is gigabit fiber optic between buildings and within the buildings to the workstations shared between administrative, academic, and telephone services with our CISCO based VoIP phone system. This network is also key to providing connectivity to the UM video teleconferencing system ("IVN"). Offsite email access is provided by a web based email interface at the facility. Other data network access to the internal facility network (campus cloud) from the outside is provided by VPN authenticated with your email credentials available on your PC, MAC, and Smartphones (CISCO IPSEC Group-Tunnel) using free and easy to use VPN client software; the VPN client is provided as part of the APPLE OS distribution on MAC and iPhone/iPad products. The campus also maintains a very pervasive campus-wide WiFi network that blankets all of the campus buildings and provides bleed-out access into the adjoining grounds, research pier complex and research fleet yard. This system is authenticated again using your email credentials via a web proxy and/or by VPN for internal facility network access. Two unauthenticated "guest only" WiFi access points are also provided within the two primary conference center buildings on campus allowing access to the outside commercial internet (only) for visiting researchers/guests.

The department maintains several key information servers highlighted below:

The department provides an "open workstation lab" located in the basement of the Nice Hall building where the IT department itself is located. The lab is available 24x7 to all at the lab and contains 8 general use workstations, a flatbed scanner, a LINUX based mid end 32 core x86 based computational analysis server, and a high throughput B&W LASER Printer.

The department also provides other resources including a software library with site maintained packages including popular Microsoft and APPLE products (all key Microsoft Windows and APPLE MAC operating systems, Microsoft Office for Windows and MAC), Virus and MALWARE protection tools, Adobe CS, and a number of high end modeling, statistical, and geospatial analysis tools such as MATLAB, Mathematica, SAS, SPLUS, and the ESRI products via a buy-in/pool license arrangement. These specific packages are provided gratis to the researchers at the facility but only a set of pre-negotiated products is available, more specialized software tools not maintained by the IT department must be procured by the faculty themselves however the University of Maryland College Park campus OIT department, provides many at large academic discount or pool buy-in arrangements for University faculty, staff and students.

The IT department also provides procurement assistance with workstation and group server hardware requests. The IT department maintains a template/build approach to common PC hardware based workstations and small servers whereas common spares of key components are stockpiled for quick swap-out.

Lastly, the IT department is required to charge a nominal service fee for our efforts billed to any grant account provided and on an hourly basis. The dollar amount of this fee is set by the business office department. Telephone support and any lab IT infrastructure based issues are provided gratis to all (including telephone hardware, video teleconferencing, and AV) but helpdesk support for PC/workstation issues is charged with the first 15 minutes of our assistance free and then hourly charges applied afterwards. A billing grant#/account request is generally emailed to the user after the task is complete stating the total amount of time we had committed to the task prior to its resolution.