New directory system debuts over spring break

By Macy Sliman, Staff writer

Active Directory is a Directory Service by Microsoft, which authenticates users and computers to a domain, assigning policy/rights per user. Novell (which is being replaced on campus) is a similar Directory Service.

The reason for this recent change is that SNU is applying new administrative database software, which requires Active Directory instead of Novell. The timing of this addition was calculated for this spring, and the best idea was for Spring Break when there would be the least amount of disturbance to the students due to there being the fewest users.

This particular program has been coming into effect for the past two years but only recently made its début to the chagrin of some students. It did provide anticipated problems for participants who wished to log in to their accounts.   Most were able to create a new password without problems, but some were not as successful.

Elizabeth Hoffman, freshman early childhood education major, knows of students who experienced such problems through her job working at the library circulation desk.

“A lot of students had a lot of problems trying to get into the system,” Hoffman said. “They just asked the reference librarians or if not they had to figure it out for themselves the best they could.”

SNU Network Coordinator Chichi Freelander and her team handled these problems one by one with much deliberation and patience.

This system is predicted to be better than the original in that it will consolidate all information into one place for better access to information through the Active Directory program privacy policy and user rights.

Freelander commented about the impact that this program would have on the community,

“This (Active Directory) affects Prospective/Traditional/[Professional and Graduate Studies]/Online Students as well as Faculty/Adjunct/Staff. It affects Student printing, FS printing, SNU wifi and a new Portal, which will eventually replace MySNU,” Freelander said.

The problems of this addition, like any other change to such a large database, were anticipated and precautions were taken to avoid the glitches. Large training sessions for faculty and staff were undertaken as well as redoing everything user/computer accounts, policies and rights/access to operating systems etc. Active Directory is expected it to be fully implemented by the summer of 2014.