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IT Project Portfolio – University of Reading

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IT Project Portfolio

The IT Portfolio page is dedicated to keeping staff and students at the University of Reading informed about the latest IT projects.

The page is split into two sections:

The new releases section contains details about the IT projects that have just been released or are due to very shortly. The upcoming releases section contains details regarding projects with release dates sometime in the future. Release dates are advisory and are subject to change.

Portfolio on a page

A portfolio on a page is a detailed timeline of the projects currently running within the IT department, useful for gaining an overview of all the work currently happening.

New Releases

Skype for Business

IT are pleased to announce the launch of Skype for Business for all UoR staff members.

Skype for Business is an instant messaging service that lets you collaborate with anyone, anywhere, on any device, with the security and control of Microsoft. Its features include:

  • Instant messaging
  • Screen sharing
  • Video calls
  • File sharing
  • Online meetings

Skype for Business connects automatically to the UoR staff list so you can easily find colleagues. Share files, calendar information and statuses to collaborate with your teams and colleagues more efficiently.

Full details on the features of Skype for Business, where to get it and guides on how to use it can be found on our dedicated Skype for Business webpage.

Release: OUT NOW!

Apps Anywhere

IT is pleased to announce the 'beta'-launch of its new application deployment service, Apps Anywhere. Apps Anywhere allows applications to be streamed and cached without full installation and will transform the way students and staff access University software. We are providing this service as a direct consequence of a request from student representatives.

As a first stage, Apps Anywhere has been deployed specifically to centrally-booked PC labs and classrooms. This alone will greatly expand access to the key teaching applications by making applications available in all locations, including the Library. Further stages will make eligible software available even wider, including to personal PCs and laptops on campus and, later, off campus.

As a beta, we are seeking to ensure the service is robust, highly available and to iron out any last remaining problems. We encourage you to help us by providing feedback, particularly if you experience any problems. We do advise you that during this phase Apps Anywhere will not necessarily have the warranty we expect of our services. IT continues to assure teaching and learning by using existing software deployment methods in parallel.

To access Apps Anywhere in a centrally-booked lab, please visit the Apps Anywhere webpage.

Release: OUT NOW

Office 365

Microsoft's Office 365 suite combines email, calendar, OneDrive file storage, Office Online apps and Skype for Business. Office 365 is provided to help you collaborate on work with colleagues and work partners.

Services include:

  • Office software (Word, Excel etc.)
  • OneDrive for Business (1TB of cloud storage)
  • Email and Calendaring
  • Skype for Business

Check out our Office 365 hub for more details and how to access it.

Release: OUT NOW!

Upcoming Releases

Research Data storage service

This service will provide all researchers (staff and higher degree research students) access to secure, resilient and redundant storage replicated in two locations for protection against major server room incident.

  • The service provides 3 tiers of online 'live' data storage offering a range of features and price points
  • All storage is accessible from Windows, Linux and Mac OSX via the NFS protocol
  • The service is chargeable in advance based on the service tier, amount of storage required and the storage duration.

 Release: Q1

Research Computing Centralised Infrastructure

The Hyper Converged Compute Infrastructure for Research project is designed to enable IT to provide a centrally supported compute infrastructure service to researchers across the University.

We aim to provide a central infrastructure, capable of supporting all cluster computing requirements, to aid researchers with research computing work. This will be available for researchers and schools to buy into.

Centralisation of this computing infrastructure will enable a more efficient support model by increasing responsiveness due to the standardised approach.

In order to achieve this the Academic Computing Team has undergone a proof of concept and includes:

  • The ability to start small and scale performance and capacity as needed
  • Reduce storage overprovisioning and its associated cost
  • Virtualization tools to provision compute resources on demand
  • Reduce infrastructure management complexity
  • Potential integration with Public Cloud to deliver extended capacity and cost benefits

Once established, the infrastructure will enable the Academic Computing Team to focus on supporting Research staff and students to deploy their applications and algorithms to best effect.

Release: Q2 

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