Backing up your files protects you from hard drive failure, accidental deletes, malware or ransomware, and even theft. Northeastern OneDrive for Business is available to students, faculty and staff. Faculty and staff can also use myBackup Cloud, shared network storage. Additionally there are backup options that utilize an external hard drive for your specific computer’s operating system:
Windows 8, 8.1 and 10 include the backup program File History to easily backup your data. File History takes a snapshot of your personal files and saves them to an external location such as an external USB hard drive. Once the initial backup is complete File History continuously saves all changes to the file allowing you the option to restore from multiple versions of the same document. File History is easy to setup and a great way to protect your files. Learn more from the Lifehacker post How to Back Up Your Computer Automatically with Windows 10’s Built-in Tools.
Windows 7 includes a Backup and Restore option in the control panel. For instructions on backup and recovery, read the helpful How To Geek guide Geek School: Learning Windows 7 – Backup and Recovery.
Mac OS X ships with a built-in program called Time Machine that backs up all your files to an external hard drive. All you need is an external USB, FireWire or Thunderbolt drive or local Time Capsule. For added protection enable backup set encryption to protect your files with a password. Learn more from the Apple Support page Use Time Machine to back up or restore your Mac.
On July 9. 2015, Microsoft released Office 2016 for Mac – the first major Microsoft release for OS X in years. The software is now available to Office 365 subscribers – including Northeastern students, faculty and staff – for download through the Office 365 portal. This new version Microsoft Office is only available for computers running OS X Yosemite (10.10), and the software must be manually downloaded and installed.
What is different?
Office 2016 for Mac includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and, for the first time, OneNote. The overall look and feel matches Microsoft Office 2013 products, bringing it more in line with the Windows, mobile and web-based experience of these applications. If you have been using Office on these other platforms, the experience will be very similar. Like Office 2013 and other Office 365 products, Office 2016 for Mac can be cloud-connected. This new version is intended to pair with the web-based and mobile applications, allowing for seamless document editing on any computer or device.
Should I upgrade now? The ITS perspective
Since Office 2016 for Mac has just been released, ITS has not yet had the opportunity to test its compatibility with all of Northeastern’s networks, applications and systems. Currently ITS cannot guarantee that those who upgrade will have a seamless transition. ITS will provide further information once our testing and analysis is complete.
Downloading Office 2016 for Mac
If you do choose to upgrade, please note that while the Service Desk staff will always try its best to be of assistance with issues that may arise, this software is not currently supported by ITS. To download the software, please follow the directions posted here on our site:
NOTE: You will only see Office 2016 for Mac if you are accessing the portal on a computer running OS X Yosemite (10.10); if you are on an earlier version of OS X, you will see Office for Mac 2011.
For more information about Office 2016 for Mac, please visit Microsoft’s blog post. You can also explore the new Lynda.com course “Office for Mac 2016 New Features”. Log in to Lynda.com through lynda.northeastern.edu with your myNEU username and password, then search for the course title. Microsoft has posted Office training and tutorials and the Office 2016 for Mac Quick Start Guides.
Ars Technica – A quick hands-on with Office 2016 for Mac
Gizmodo – Office 2016 for Mac Now Works Just As Well as It Does on Windows
ZDNet – Microsoft makes Office 2016 for Mac available, first for Office 365 users
New and the latest versions of software are now available to the Northeastern community in ITS-managed labs, on Faculty/Staff Northeastern-managed computers and for local install. Software availability is based on the Summer 2015 image.
If you are on a managed computer and are not seeing the latest software in Start or Software Center on Windows, or in Applications or Self Service on Mac, you may want to consider having your machine reimaged. You can do this by contacting the ITS Service Desk at 617.373.4357 (xHELP) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also check out the Spring 2015 new software for anything you might have missed, including:
The latest version of this program introduces a number of new features, including machine learning, computational geometry, geographic computation, and device connectivity.
This software, previously only available in the Digital Scholarship Commons lab, provides a PowerPoint-compatible interface to help create engaging and interactive online course materials that blend instruction, audio, video, and optional assessment.
The architecture and design software latest version provides new capabilities – from faster rendering to entirely new tools.
This new version of this relational database application includes new design, development and security features for all platforms, along with an improved client for both iPhone and iPad.
NOTE: As part of this update, ITS will be retiring FileMaker Pro 12 and 10, removing from all faculty/staff managed computers and ITS-managed lab computers in mid-May 2015. Faculty/staff who need to use the application, please follow the instructions below for how to install a local copy of the new version.
This version of the chemical process optimization software includes advances in modeling, analysis and reporting.
This version of the data analysis and statistical software provides enhanced capabilities in many areas, from new treatment effects and models to greater options for sample sizes and forecasting.
Microsoft recently released a new Outlook for Mac for Office 365 users – the first major Microsoft release for OS X in years. The software is now available for download to Office 365 subscribers – including Northeastern faculty and staff currently using Office 365 email – through the Office 365 portal.
Installing the new software is more involved than a simple upgrade. The new Outlook is a separate software application, independent of Office 2011 and will install alongside any existing Outlook applications that are already installed on your Mac. Since Outlook for Mac does not upgrade Outlook 2011, and because it requires a manual download and installation, we recommend that you decide on performing this upgrade with due caution and care.
So far in ITS’s testing of this new software, outside of the upgrade process, there have been only a few reported issues. Notably, there are some reports of errors while trying to open Microsoft Office documents by clicking on a link embedded in an e-mail message, possibly due to compatibility issues between Office 2011 and the new Outlook for Mac. Please note that while the ITS Service Desk staff will always try its best to be of assistance with issues that may arise, this software is currently not fully supported by ITS.
Download and Installation
The new Outlook for Mac is only available for computers running OS X Yosemite (10.0) – Apple’s latest operating system, and the software must be manually downloaded and installed. Microsoft is continuing its “cloud first” strategy so the new Outlook for Mac is only available for download from the Office 365 portal. Once you are signed in to the Office 365 portal access the Software page by selecting the Gear icon > Office 365 Settings > Software > Outlook for Mac icon. Unfortunately, due to Microsoft limitations, the new Outlook for Mac cannot be made available via Self-Service on ITS-managed Macs. Both Microsoft and ITS highly recommend that you first back up your computer, and then install the new Outlook for Mac, before removing Outlook 2011. Microsoft has provided detailed instructions on how to uninstall Outlook 2011.
The new Outlook for Mac for Office 365 includes noticeably better performance and reliability than Outlook 2011, due to the use of a new mailbox database structure and a new threading model. ITS tests have shown that it is faster and more agile when switching between tabs, with improved scrolling, and provides improved synchronization with Office 365’s Exchange Web Services. The new Outlook also sports a new modern user interface that is aligned with the Outlook 2013 for Windows look and feel, and supports online archiving. For more information, please visit Microsoft’s blog post New Outlook for Mac available to Office 365 customers.
Coming Soon – New Office Suite for Mac
The new Outlook for Mac is the first of the next release of Office products for Mac: Word for Mac, Excel for Mac, PowerPoint for Mac and OneNote for Mac. Microsoft will release a public beta of the new Office suite during the first half of this year, with the final release planned for late 2015. This time frame will allow software providers, such as ITS, to prepare for the new software, and for ITS to test it out on the different environments used throughout the university.
Questions or concerns? Please contact the ITS Service Desk at 617.373.4357 (xHELP) or email@example.com.
There are several things Mac users at Northeastern need to look out for – right now and in the coming months.
NOTE: Students – Are you a member of a student group that uses Mac? The information below for faculty and staff may also apply to your student group’s computer.
Typically Apple only supports its latest two releases. Back in February 2014, Apple stopped supporting OS X Snow Leopard (10.6), which it originally released back in 2009. With the release of OS X Yosemite (10.10) this last October, support for the other two older operating systems – OS X Lion (10.7, released in 2011) and OS X Mountain Lion (10.8, released in 2012) –
will soon end [Edit: support has ended for 10.7 and 10.8] It is time to upgrade!
Why should I upgrade?
How can I tell which Mac operating system I am running?
In the top left of the menu bar, click the Apple icon and select “About This Mac.” The version will be listed, and the first two numbers indicate the main operating system. For example, if it lists Version 10.8.5, the machine is running OS X Mountain Lion (10.8) with a few updates (the .5 at the end signifies a point release). It is best if you are at least on OS X Mavericks (10.9).
If you are on a ITS-managed Mac and are impacted, you will see several notification pop-ups over the coming months.
How do I upgrade?
Now that Apple has released OS X Yosemite (10.10), ITS is working on developing a new standard Mac image for Northeastern-managed computers. The benefit of a standard image is that ITS tests out the operating system with software used at Northeastern to ensure everything works properly with our systems. We anticipate releasing this new image during the Spring 2015 semester.
Update: The OS X Yosemite (10.10) Mac image is now available. Please call the ITS Service Desk at 617.373.4357 to upgrade.
ITS has ended support for the application CORD which was used on Macs trying to gain virtual access to Windows applications. through myApps. The new supported application is Microsoft Remote Desktop, which is available on Northeastern-managed Macs under Self-Service. Personal computers may access the application through Apple’s App Store. Instruction on how to configure Microsoft Remote Desktop for myApps can be found here.
Over the last few years, Northeastern Mac users have utilized MacApps for access to university-licensed applications. This service has primarily provided access to Adobe Creative Suite products. Now that Adobe Creative Cloud and Acrobat Pro are accessible in many different ways, ITS will be retiring MacApps. Learn more about Adobe Creative Cloud at Northeastern.
Update: MacApps was retired during Fall 2015.
How do I get the software I need?
Last week Apple released its latest desktop operating system – OS X Yosemite (10.10). Like its predecessor Mavericks, this new operating system is available for free when downloaded from Mac App Store.
What is different?
OS X Yosemite is the first Mac operating system that allows for the seamless integration between Mac computers and iOS devices – specifically those using iOS 8.1. Transitioning from one device to the next is made possible with iCloud Drive, which leverages the new feature Handoff and the improvements to AirDrop, SMS and Messages. Handoff allows you to use Mail, Safari, Maps, Messages, Reminders, Calendar, Contacts, Notes, Keynote, Numbers, and Pages interchangeably between Mac and iOS. The enhanced AirDrop allows you to easily share files with iOS devices, and it will automatically download files shared between two devices with the same Apple ID. Please note that ITS has not yet completed a formal investigation of security and privacy on iCloud Drive, but at this time we would advise users to not store any potentially sensitive information, including any work data, on this cloud.
Yosemite is intended to pair with iPhones and other Apple products, and many features may only work with devices capable of running iOS 8.1. You can now receive SMS messages and even phone calls on your computer that were originally sent to your iPhone. Group messaging has also been improved, allowing you to name, mute or even leave group conversations in Messages. It is also possible to turn your iPhone into a Personal Hotspot for your Mac.
Should I upgrade now? The ITS perspective
Since OS X Yosemite has just been released, ITS has not yet had the opportunity to test its compatibility with all of Northeastern’s networks, applications and systems. Currently ITS cannot guarantee that those who upgrade will have a seamless transition. ITS is testing and analyzing our various applications and services on this new operating system, and we will provide further information once our testing and analysis is complete.
If you do choose to upgrade, please note while the Service Desk staff will always try its best to be of assistance with issues that may arise, this operating system is not currently supported by ITS.
For more information about OS X Yosemite, please visit http://www.apple.com/osx/
Wall Street Journal – OS X Yosemite Review: The Mac Cozies Up to the iPhone
Gizmodo – 17 Things You Can Do in OS X Yosemite That You Couldn’t Do in Mavericks
MacWorld – How to prepare for OS X Yosemite: Get your Mac ready to download & install OS X 10.10