Coronavirus: Technical information on the university operations

Digital teaching and IT for working from home

The following information will be continuously updated – last revised Thursday, March 19, 2020
[Photo: Addictive Stock / photocase.de]


Because of the current developments in the spread of the coronavirus, it is currently not possible to foresee how regular university and teaching activities will be affected in the near future. The TIK would like to keep you up to date on tools with which you can digitally support your work or compensate for interruptions. We will also provide information about possible restrictions of our IT services.

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Newsticker: Information on the coronavirus 

Current restrictions of IT services

Helpdesk

The Helpdesk (Benutzerberatung) will remain closed until Sunday, April 19, 2020. Support by telephone and e-mail will continue to be available during opening hours.

Computer pools

The student computer pools will remain closed until Sunday, April 19, 2020.

Telephone support

We ask for your understanding if one of the employees cannot be reached directly by telephone. The support of our services via e-mail and remote maintenance will continue. Please find information on our service pages, and send us your request to the designated support address.

Securely working from home

In principle, employees are encouraged to use existing service equipment for working from home. This is obligatory for employees in the central administration in order to largely guarantee the protection of confidential information. During the current exceptional situation, employees of institutes and central facilities who cannot be provided with a business computer can also use private devices for working from home. The following conditions apply:

  1. The operating system and applications are up-to-date in terms of security, and all security updates are installed and active.

  2. The end device for working from home is under the sole control of the respective employee of the University of Stuttgart. At least when being used for working from home, the system may not be made accessible to any third party (including family members).

  3. When working from home, only those operating system services and applications necessary for work may be active on the end device.

  4. An up-to-date virus scanner with up-to-date signatures is installed and active.

  5. At least the non-volatile data stored on the system for conducting official business is strongly encrypted.

  6. The latest version of the Cisco AnyConnect VPN client is installed for access to the university networks.

We would like to ask you to give special care – especially when handling personal data – when working from home.

A guideline of RUS-CERT for mobile working and working from home will follow shortly.

Information for employees of the institutes and facilities

Service telephones can be diverted to a private line. The easiest way to do this is at the workplace. Select “Rufumleitung” (call forwarding) on your phone under the “Menu” tab. Select “Sof. Rufuml.” (immediate call forwarding). You will then be prompted to enter the destination phone number.

If you are already working from home or have questions/problems, please contact telephone support.

You can access your e-mail mailbox from any end device at any time via a web browser by logging on to https://mail.uni-stuttgart.de/ with your AC account. If you use a mail client such as Microsoft Outlook or Thunderbird at home, we provide the following set-up instructions (DE).

We offer different services for tele-, web, and video conferencing. The DFNconf service is currently available. Please note that this service is highly frequented because of the current situation and can therefore only be used to a limited extent. We will promptly inform you about alternative possibilities here and on the service page.

Please note: The use of a VPN client is required for the following services:

  • Access to internal university pages (e.g., administration manual)
  • Access to network drives
  • Access to the on-line material of the University Library

Under the following link, you will find instructions for setting up the VPN client.

In order to prevent an unnecessary data load, please refrain from streaming videos or the like as long as you are connected via VPN. If you cannot get a stable connection at vpn.tik.uni-stuttgart.de, you can also register at vpn2.tik.uni-stuttgart.de

In order to access a network drive of your institute, you first need access to the university network via VPN client. For the file service offered by the TIK, you will find instructions on how to integrate a network drive (DE) under the following link. If you have any problems with the set-up, please contact your institute admin (if known) or the support of the file service.

If paper applications or contracts are required for processes, providing an image (e.g. jpg) or PDF is currently sufficient. You can submit the original document at a later date. If you do not have a scanner, take pictures of the documents, e.g. with a smartphone. Please make sure that the photo is not synchronized to a cloud platform. A good scanning setting is black and white at 150 dpi. Please check your scanned or photographed documents for legibility before submitting them.

Information for employees in the central administration

Service telephones can be diverted to a private line. The easiest way to do this is at the workplace. Select “Rufumleitung” (call forwarding) on your phone under the “Menu” tab. Select “Sof. Rufuml.” (immediate call forwarding). You will then be prompted to enter the destination phone number.

 

If you are already working from home or have questions/problems, please contact telephone support.

The ZVD provides you with the following instructions for setting up Microsoft Outlook:

If you have a laptop administered by the TIK (yellow sticker with pcXXXXnb), you can access the network drives (group drives and home drive) with it as follows:

  • Connect to the internet (e.g., via your private WLAN/LAN)

  • Establish a connection to the university via the “Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client”. This is installed by default on all laptops administered by us. Enter the login data in the following form:

    • Username: ac******@uni-stuttgart.de
    • Password: Your personal password

      In order to prevent an unnecessary data load, please refrain from streaming videos or the like as long as you are connected via VPN. If you cannot get a stable connection at vpn.tik.uni-stuttgart.de, you can also register at vpn2.tik.uni-stuttgart.de

  • If the network drives are missing in File Explorer, a script is available to connect the L, G, and N drives. Enter the complete path C:\EmpirumAgent\User\NetDrives in the File Explorer. The folder contains a script with the same name “NetDrives.cmd”. Please double click on the script. If, for some reason, the script does not exist or does not work, you can also call up the drives directly (see the circular mail regarding “Hinweise zum Arbeiten im Home-Office in der Zentralen Verwaltung” dated March 18, 2020)

We offer different services for tele-, web, and video conferencing. The DFNconf service is currently available. Please note that this service is highly frequented because of the current situation and can therefore only be used to a limited extent. We will promptly inform you about alternative possibilities here and on the service page.

To access specialized applications such as SVA and SAP, you need either a telecommuting device (zero client) or, in addition to your laptop and VPN client, a VDI client on your laptop. We must also set up a corresponding workstation on a special infrastructure (VDI, Virtual Desktop Infrastructure). For this, we need the approval of the Chancellor. In this case, contact the head of department, who can obtain approval from the Chancellor. Please refrain from contacting the ZVD directly in this regard.

For an overview of which services or applications can be accessed with which technology, see the attachment to the circular mail regarding “Hinweise zum Arbeiten im Home-Office in der Zentralen Verwaltung” dated March 18, 2020

In order to prevent an unnecessary data load, please refrain from streaming videos or the like as long as you are connected via VPN. If you cannot get a stable connection at vpn.tik.uni-stuttgart.de, you can also register at vpn2.tik.uni-stuttgart.de

  • If you have not yet received an official device from the TIK and require one for working from home, this also requires the approval of the central administration management. There are currently not enough devices available. The allocation must therefore be prioritized.

     

  • If you receive a laptop from us or take it from your department, it is important that you have logged on to the device with your AC account once in the university network on site before you take the laptop home. Otherwise, the registration with the AC account will not work.

     

  • If you have laptops in your departments that are currently not needed, please contact us so that we can provide them where they are currently urgently needed.

If you have any problems, please contact ZVD support, preferably by e-mail or hotline 88099.

If paper applications or contracts are required for processes, providing an image (e.g. jpg) or PDF is currently sufficient. You can submit the original document at a later date. If you do not have a scanner, take pictures of the documents, e.g. with a smartphone. Please make sure that the photo is not synchronized to a cloud platform. A good scanning setting is black and white at 150 dpi. Please check your scanned or photographed documents for legibility before submitting them.

Virtualization of teaching

The TIK is currently working hard on a package of measures and assistance (possibly also for the complete “virtualization” of courses), which we are providing in an initial version as an ILIAS Learning Module. Furthermore, we would like to collect your questions and ideas as well as our answers and solutions in a forum, make them publicly accessible throughout the university and thus build up an FAQ over the next few weeks. These are primarily intended for the teachers. However, we expressly invite everyone, including you as a student, to contribute to this forum.

We expressly advise against making use of external cloud-based e-learning tools that are currently offered free of charge to a limited extent. Pure on-line teaching can also be carried out successfully and in compliance with data protection regulations at the University of Stuttgart using self-hosted TIK services.

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