Virtual Labs, Machines keep students on track

By Mark Whited
Guest Writer
mwhited@lhup.edu

October 25, 2012

Have you ever wished your work could be saved to another PC or Mac in the event the one you are using crashes? LHU’s Information Technology department has you covered.

Virtual Labs have been an ongoing project at LHU. The computers you find in Raub 106, Akeley 203 and 205, Stevenson and Stevenson basement, and Robinson 106 are all Virtual Labs, utilizing Virtual Machines; another name for computers students use in these labs. When a student logs on with their username and password at one of these labs, they are not just logging on to that one machine; they are logging on to LHU’s virtual server.

By logging on to the virtual server, it essentially allows students the ability to access work at any machine in the lab, even in the event that the one the student is currently using crashes. In that case, the student could just go to another unclaimed machine, log in, and their work will be there waiting for them.

“With the virtual machine-as opposed to a regular desktop-if the power goes out, that virtual machine is still running on the server. So, you can go to the next virtual machine, log on, and pick right up where you left off,” Christian Glotfelty, a technician from the LHU Information Technology department, said.

Do you want the same benefits that these labs provide, but from your own PC or Mac? The IT department has an app for that.

“There is an application you can install on your home computer. You’ll have to type in our server name, which will direct you to our equipment. Once you do, you log in with your same username and password, select from the same list of virtual labs that you would have access to on campus and it’s right there,” said Glotfelty.

While this backs up students’ work in the event of a computer crash, it also serves another function. If a student has an assignment that he or she can only do at one of these labs because it has a specific app, students now have the ability to log on away from campus; gaining access to the same applications that the labs have. You do, however, have to finish your work at a lab physically

To download the application, go to viewconnection.lhup.edu and follow all the prompts.

“If you take a vacation, but you miss class and need to access work from one of these labs, you now have that ability worldwide,” Glotfelty said. “You just need an internet connection.”

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3 thoughts on “Virtual Labs, Machines keep students on track

  1. why does the newspaper only report LHU “fluff”. This article is a prime example. the only reason a student uses the virtual machines is because they have to. Currently they are extremely slow, so slow that the computer next them is seven years old works better. im not joking about the computer being seven years old. They have USB ports but can’t stick a thumb drive in it to save your work or transfer it over. These are reasons why students need to bring their own computer. because lock Haven won’t keep up with standards, the machines, software, and even possibly the IT support are inadequate for todays student. Only the faculty and the computer club have a half way decent computer to get their work done and they aren’t sharing.

    1. DSpecht,

      We report this because the student who wrote it sent it to us and it was well written as well as informative. Being the news editor as well as a sophomore here, you’d think I’d have known about this software feature; I did not. And, if I didn’t know of it, I’m sure I’m not the only person. You obviously have a very strong opinion on this matter and clearly are hoping for LHU to get back on track; send our opinions editor, Nico, a piece on it and more faculty will see that students are dissatisfied with the campus’s technology. It may take time, but your article could help bring the change you are looking for.

      Thank you for your feedback,

      Kate

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