IFAS COMPUTER COORDINATORS
NOTES FROM June 11th 2004 REGULAR MEETING
A regular meeting of the ICC was held on Friday, June 11th, 2004. The meeting was chaired and called to order by Dennis Brown, at approx. 9:30 a.m. in the ICS Conference Room.
PRESENT: Fourteen members participated. Remote participants: Steve Lasley, Joel Parlin and Joshua Wilson. On-site participants: David Bauldree, Dennis Brown, Jenny Brewer, Allan Burrage, Dan Cromer, Joe Hayden, Chris Hughes, Dwight Jesseman, Jack Kramer, Richard Phelan, and Mark Ross.
STREAMING AUDIO: available here.
Allan Burrage from CREC was introduced as a first-time attendee, though not a new ICC member. Dennis Brown skipped reviewing events since our last meeting because time was limited and the agenda was long.
Kevin Hill had been expected to attend, but unexpectedly had to leave prior to the meeting.
In his place, Chris Hughes began the AD discussion by stating that things were moving better now since Dan Cromer's email to IFAS-ALL that was sent out yesterday. Chris received a lot of unit contacts this morning and he will proceed to follow up with those people about getting the IFAS Directory in order for the user account migration that is set to occur July 2nd. For those units having their own domains, Chris still requires a list of the user accounts from Facilities Planning and Operations and Wildlife Ecology and Conservation.
The ICC-AD subcommittee had made a recommendation that a small group be appointed to draft an IFAS IT Charter. Chris Hughes has volunteered to write that with Jenny Brewer's assistance. Since the recommendation was first conceived, Chris has spoken to Joe Joyce who said that if a charter came through the ICC and ITPAC successfully, that it would be made into policy. Dennis asked for ICC volunteers to help on that but received none. Jenny and Chris mentioned that input from outside the ICC would be invaluable in this and suggested that someone might ask their unit head to participate. Dan suggested beginning with an Executive Summary of the document to present to those who might be interested in giving their input on that. This charter is viewed as an update of the Infostructure Task Force Report that is available off the ITPAC website.
Dan Cromer mentioned that the UF IT Network Infostructure Committee, of which he is a member, is working on a definition of what an IT professional is for security purposesand thus who can be given authority to manage security.
Dennis asked for a run-down of the various sections within IFAS IT. Dan enumerated these as being:
Chris Hughes will have an IFAS admin contract document ready by Monday. It will be mainly a pointer to UF IT Policy that admins will be expected to sign as indication that they understand and accept their duties and responsibilities.
There had been a proposal on changing the ICC-AD subcommittee meeting times, which are currently set for the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month at 2-4pm in Fifield 1306. As Kevin was unexpectedly absent, that discussion was postponed.
John Sawyer is getting married tomorrow, and was unable to supply his expected update on the status of the Patchlink implementation. Jenny reported that Plant Pathology and FYCS have successfully implemented Patchlink in the test phase. John had been waiting on the IMM on Centrally-based Software Installations. Dan reported at yesterday's ICC-AD meeting that the IMM may be considered in effect as it has been approved and its formal publication is not necessary in order to act. As a result, Patchlink may begin to be rolled out as soon as next week. If unit directors have questions or problems with this rollout, they should contact Joe Joyce. Rollout will be on-campus first, as remote repositories are yet to be set up. All ICCers will be informed prior to any action within their units on this.
ePO agents can now go out as well. Jenny will plan to do that this coming Wednesday.
Also, Win9X updates for AD need to go out. Jenny has prepared a logon script for that, but Patchlink can be used with the logon script being left as a last resort. Jenny will make the three files and instructions for their use available to those who wish to update their own boxes manually prior to this. Jenny will post these on the ITNS website.
Chris reminded us that a campus agreement is coming, likely July 1st, to provide CALS, Office Pro, and MS Desktop OS upgrade licenses across the board for UF use. This means software upgrades will be at no additional costs to units for those machines that can handle such.
There was considerable dicussion on whether minimal machine specifications should be addressed by the IT Charter and the consensus was yes. Issues such as a differentiation between administrative computer and technical computer usage were discussed. Jack Kramer made the excellent point that IFAS should pay for the purchase and maintenance of IFAS
administrative function computers WHEREVER they reside. And they should
have every right to manage these machines fully. Having machines that could handle sufficient upgrades to be secure on the network was also discussed along with options for old machines which needed to be retained for various reasons.
Jenny reported that the anti-spam implementation is working well and that she is looking into how well it will work when load balanced. On Sundays, 97-99% of mail is being blocked; this is a good test as there is very little legitimate mail sent during that period, and it indicates that the system is working well.
Jenny discussed website retirement procedures and long other webhosting issues. We need a webmasters listserv with an accurate list of our website owners before we can do much in terms of requesting site renewals, for example, or notifying about updates to the web system.
Dan noted that IFAS website content is the domain of Ashley Wood, ICS and the web content committee, while IFAS IT is in charge only of the technical aspects. Content management is needed, not to control "what" is published, but rather to assure that the site is maintained current/useful.
Dan Cromer spoke a bit about the distance education project. $225,000 of equipment has been ordered. New routers will be at 13 sites. There is a meeting on these issues this afternoon at 1:30 in CSE 507, where more details may be available with regards to IP ranges etc. that are of so much interest to remote sites. Some locations will require renumbering twice. Interested persons can be given access to a IFAS video sharepoint site that covers details of this project.
There was a brief discussion on the need for everyone to have a Gatorlink account.
Dan Cromer mentioned that he feels an IMM should be created that officially recognizes the ICC, its role and responsibilities. For the record, the ICC was envisioned by the Infostructure Task Force Report of 1997 in the section on "Unit-Level Computer Support Personnel". The ICC was formalized and its first meeting was called via an electronic memorandum from Joe Joyce back in January of 2001. It is interesting to note that "ICC" was supposed to stand for the "Information Coordinators Committee" but has generally been interpreted since as being the "IFAS Computer Coordinators".
Some felt that participation by unit IT groups should be mandated.
The meeting adjourned at 11:15am, as preparations had to be made for another meeting that was scheduled for that room.