Returning to campus soon? Get up to speed with computer and phone updates

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Your campus computer may need system updates

For the duration of the pandemic, many faculty and staff accessed their computers remotely or took them home. Still others turned their office desktops off, and worked from laptops or other secondary machines. Whatever your situation, Library and Technology Services expects that many campus systems will soon be powered up for the first time in over a year. For those returning to computers that have been idle, we recommend setting aside time to let them get back up to speed.

Why it’s important

Over the last year, Microsoft routinely issued security and other updates to its Windows operating system and to its Office software every couple of weeks, and there have been two major feature updates and a quality update in that time. Apple has similarly updated its macOS. Getting systems up-to-date after such a long period of inactivity will take a bit longer than usual.

What do I need to do?

While most systems will automatically work to apply these updates in the background, you can help the process along so that you can have the machine’s full resources when you’re ready to get to work.

  • To get started, visit our instruction guides for updating Windows and macOS manually. You’ll likely find that multiple re-starts and re-running of those procedures are needed before your computer is fully up to date.
  • Consider machines besides your primary desktop. Are there other computers in your area that have been left unused, such as those used by teaching assistants, in graduate student offices, and in computer labs? Be sure to update those as well.

New outside line phone dialing in effect as of July 19. Use 7 now.

No more 9! Beginning July 19, the university transitioned to a new prefix for outside dialing. To dial an outside phone line from campus phones, users must dial 7 in front of the phone number instead of 9. This change was made to prevent accidental misdials of 911. Visit LTS News for further instructions and note that the directions for reaching 911 remain the same and you do not need to dial 7 first.

If you configured your campus phone to forward to another number such as your cell phone while you were working remotely, be sure to remove the forwarding and reconfigure it with the new dialing scheme (or simply cancel forwarding if you no longer need it).

If you have any questions, contact the LTS Help Desk at 610-758-4357 or

Library and Technology Services