Helpdesk Policy

Technology Helpdesk Policies

Language schools

At the Helpdesk we speak English. Elsewhere, we have the responsibility to respect the language pledge and the right of the LS students to not hear any more English than necessary. It's the quality of the immersion experience that lets Middlebury offer such a great summer language program.

Language schools are fast and intense and it's a really serious problem if, say, a teacher goes a week without a laptop. Hence we offer laptop loaners and a number of computer labs, as backup solutions. Each school also has a pool of computers that faculty can use (check with coordinator). For students and faculty who are not at Middlebury during the normal school year, we will offer advice, guidance, and moral support as wanted but we generally do not check in their computers for extensive repair or part replacement.

Software & licensing

We have limited licenses available for end users for various programs. When can we install a program for someone, when not?

  • Windows installation discs: When there is a need to reinstall the Windows operating system, the Technology Help and Support Desk is able to re-image a Windows-based computer if it is a Middlebury owned computer (Staff/Faculty), or if it is a Student's personal computer purchased through Middlebury College. Personal computers that fall outside this category will not be reimaged.
  • Reimaging: Reimaging a computer erases ALL data! It is the responsibility of the end user to backup all personal data before a new image is placed on the computer. Middfiles is the preferred storage area to backup your personal data.
  • MS Office: Office can be installed on any college-owned computer through Casper or KACE. For personal computers, Middlebury College has a contract with Microsoft which allows some users to install Office for home use. Generally, faculty, staff, and students who are part of the regular undergraduate program at Middlebury have access to MS Office. MIIS faculty and staff, but not students, are also included. The language schools, Breadloaf, and schools abroad are not covered under our contract.

Computers and Monitors

All Middlebury staff and faculty are allowed one primary computer (see note 1) and one primary monitor (see note 2).  Any additional equipment request must be approved by the requesting department.  The Technology Help and Support Desk will assist the requestor in the ordering and installation process of any additional piece of equipment, but it will be the department's responsibility to provide its Banner Index to the Help Desk prior to ordering the equipment and for service to begin. 

Requests for additional peripherals (e.g. trackball, mouse, card reader, etc...) will need to be justified and paid for by the department making the request. The Technology Help and Support Desk will assist in the ordering process and installation if needed. A weekly review of these type of requests will be conducted with a 7 business day turn-around time for response to request.

Note 1 - One primary computer consists of: a desktop or laptop, monitor, keyboard, and mouse. If it is a laptop, a docking station, power adapter, and laptop carry bag are also included. (Older laptops may not have docking stations and/or monitors included.) Apple does not produce docking stations for Mac laptops, but a stand may be purchased. We recommend the Griffin Elevator.

Note 2 - Each user is provided one monitor through LIS. If additional monitors are needed, the Helpdesk can assist with their purchase, but they must be paid for with department funds.

Related link: LIS Faculty/Staff Statement on computing at Middlebury College

Returning Computing Equipment to LIS

Our long-standing policy is that all computing equipment and printers used by exiting employees (staff and faculty) must be returned to LIS for redeployment, donation, or recycling. If a position is approved for rehire, call or e-mail the Helpdesk and we will supply a refreshed computer that is problem-free and ready for the new employee’s own customizations, rather than subjecting them to inherited issues on potentially outdated equipment.

Equipment can be returned to us in a variety of ways:
• You can drop it off at the walk-in area at the Davis Family library.
• Call the Technology and Support Help Desk at x2200 to schedule a time for us to retrieve it.
• You can also request equipment pickup/delivery from Facilities Services by completing the appropriate form here.

Note: ALL equipment must be returned to the Technology Help and Support Desk when employees of the college retire, resign or are terminated - there are no exceptions!


Local printers - There is a new policy to start removing local printers from the Middlebury campus and to start leveraging the public network printers instead. Any failing local printer requiring troubleshooting will be removed from service and the user will be directed to the public printing resources in that area.  Request for replacement and/or servicing of local printers will be denied.  Requests for new network printing will be reviewed case by case but will be discouraged.

Estimated Time for Service

As long as the computer has not been shipped out for repair, you can take the computer away from the Helpdesk anytime during our business hours, even if we have not been able to repair it yet or provide a solution yet. Once the diagnostic work is complete and repair/resolution has started on your computer the expectation is that the Helpdesk will complete the work prior to pick-up.

Non-hardware related issues

  • We try to provide a solution for non-hardware related issues within 1 business day. Problems that are intermittent or harder to reproduce may take longer.

Hardware related issues

  • College-owned machines:
    • Apple: About 1 week (this involves reporting the issue to Apple, shipping the computer (or requesting on-site repair), Apple repairs the computer, and computer is shipped back).
    • Dell: 3-5 business days (3 business days on average) this involves reporting the issue to Dell, requesting parts or on-site repair, repairing the computer. Dell computers are rarely shipped back to Dell.
  • Student-owned machines (not purchased through Middlebury College): These are entirely dependent on the manufacturer. The Helpdesk does not provide hardware service for student, staff or faculty personal computers at this time.  The Walk-In Center Help Desk can provide guidance and best-effort suggestions to resolving the issue at hand.  In the end it is the responsibility of the end user to follow-through with the Vendor's support and warranty repair services.  Student owned computers purchased through Middlebury College will receive additional assistance in resolving hardware related issues or software configuration problems.

Passwords and private information

The Technology Help and Support Desk has a responsibility to use our skills wisely and honestly, in a way that ensures the trust of our users and optimizes the health of the college.

  • We never ask for passwords, period.
  • We do not give out personal contact information. In some circumstances we may directly contact a person on behalf of a client.
  • We do not give out students' PINs or passwords to parents. We certainly cannot reset a student's PIN without the student's consent. A student's personal information, including grades, is confidential, and we respect that.
  • This also goes for information we may have access to through WebHelpDesk. We do not give out ID numbers or other personal information to anyone but that person. To find a person's contact information or other information they have made available, use the directory at go/dir.

Retention Policy for Deleted E-mails

What is Middlebury's deleted email retention policy?

Deleted messages that are 60 days old or newer, on your Middlebury email account are backed-up every night and can be restored upon request, even if you've emptied your "Deleted Items" folder.

NOTE: If your email program is configured to use POP, you may be removing messages from the email server before they can be backed up. Please configure your email program to use the IMAP protocol instead.

Account Deletion for Graduating Seniors

Your campus accounts (email, file server, personal webpages) are deleted 6 months after graduation. You will receive email warnings about one month prior to account deletion. To ensure that you don't lose any important data:

  • File backup from server: Visit NetStorage to find out how to back up files from file servers.
  • You may export your email to various email clients. If you do not already have a program configured, you may set up an email connection by following our email configuration instructions.
  • Forwarding email: you may forward your Middlebury College email account to another account of your choosing by visiting go/forward BUT THIS FORWARDING WILL CEASE TO WORK when your account is deleted after graduation.
  • Lifelong email: the alumni office offers a Lifelong E-mail forwarding account to all Middlebury alumni. Find out more at our alumni faq page
  • Technical support for computers purchased through Middlebury College ends when you graduate. In the event of technical problems after graduation, we encourage you to contact the manufacturer directly:

Guest Access to College Equipment

Middlebury College student, faculty, and staff access to Library workstations is given precedence over all other use. Non-College community members and researchers may use library computer workstations for research needs and online information access only. A special guest login for these users is required; the password to this account changes daily, and can be obtained in person in various locations. See the Guest Access to College Equipment article for details.

Our position on Malware and Virus infected computers

See our Malware and Virus wiki page

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