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Faculty, Staff & PHD Support

Help Desk & Client Services - Who we are

The Help Desk provides technical assistance for faculty, staff, PhDs, and students for all Johnson-owned desktops and laptops and Johnson-owned services.

We are open from 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM EST. Our office is located in 201 Sage Hall. Requests for desktop support may be submitted through our online desktop support request system ( or by calling us at 607-255-6300. Messages received outside of business hours will be addressed on the next business day.

Hardware provided to you

New employees are provided with a Dell PC and an LCD monitor. The standard configuration includes Windows 7 Enterprise and an array of standard software tools listed below. If you require additional hardware, you will need your supervisor’s permission and/or STAR funds to purchase it. The Helpdesk procures standard equipment at a standard pricing level. Purchases that vary beyond those ranges could require additional approval.

Passwords and email

You have two sets of credentials when you work at Johnson—a computer login account and your Exchange/Kerberos account. They both share the same username— your NetID but use different passwords and access different systems.

To log into your computer, use your NetID and computer login account password. To change this password, press Ctrl-Alt-Delete and then choose the change password button.

You will need to change the password to something you will easily remember, conforming to password policies. A new password must be at least 8 characters long, should not be a word found in the dictionary, and should contain upper case and lower case letters, numbers, and non-alphanumeric characters. Please do not post your password where it is viewable to anyone and do not share it with anyone, especially through email communication.

You will never be asked for your passwords through email. If you ever receive an email asking for any personal information, including your NetID, password, birth date, social security number, credit card number or any sensitive information, please delete the message immediately without responding to the sender or clicking any links. In some cases, responding to the message at all is the goal of the sender. Doing so will validate your email address to them and open your email address to additional spamming. If you're unsure of the legitimacy of an email, feel free to contact the Helpdesk.

Your Exchange/Kerberos account gives you access to Cornell services such as the library, email, Blackboard, other online resources and COLTS. Go to to change your password and set your security questions.

You should have a local Outlook client set up on your computer. You can also access your email via the web. To change your password on the web, click the options button. Scroll through the left hand frame until you find the link for change password.

Software on your computer

Your computer comes with the following software:

  • MS Office (Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, Word)
  • Internet Browser (Internet Explorer)
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • QuickTime, Windows Media Player
  • Antivirus software
  • PowerDVD
  • Flash, Java

If you need to purchase additional software, contact the Helpdesk. The Helpdesk manages software licenses for the school and certain licenses might require additional funds to pay for it. This type of request would require additional approval for those purchases. Ph.D. students requesting non-standard software may do so after discussion with the Tech Czar who may suggest alternative options and assist the Helpdesk in researching needs and license agreements.

For security purposes, your Windows user account is set up to have basic user level permissions, meaning that you are not able to install software or make system changes. You can customize the feel of your computer; for example, change your desktop background, change the way Microsoft Word operates, etc. Installing software and making system changes is a service that the Helpdesk provides upon request.

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Network Shares

Most departments store information on shared folders. Your login grants access to these shared folders. You can find them under Computer. Your supervisor should be able to show you which ones pertain to your work. You also have a home directory that you can store files that you want backed up regularly but do not want to share with other users.


When you first login in, your computer sets up the shared department printers. This may take a few minutes the first time. Printers and/or copiers print your documents on both sides in black and white to decrease paper usage and costs.


Technology Services employs a variety of methods to backup your data beginning with daily backups of network shares and home directories. If you need to keep something on your desktop’s local hard drive, users are encouraged to keep all data under the Documents folder and/or the Desktop to ensure their data is backed up.

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Blackboard is a course management tool for instructors who want to create web pages for their courses. Blackboard sites are accessible via any Web browser and have features which allow for on-line quizzes, discussion boards and collaborative group work. Faculty members can access assistance with BlackBoard by visiting For faculty members who would like assistance setting up course pages at Johnson, contact Barbara Drake ( in Faculty Support.


Cornell at large offers various online and in person training opportunities for staff, faculty and PhDs.

Services not provided by the Helpdesk or Technology Services

  • Personal software/hardware purchases
  • Troubleshooting of Home PCs (if using Cornell advertised services at home, contact CIT for troubleshooting)
  • Guidance/Training on application usage
  • Extensive support of non-Technology Services-acquired peripherals such as Flash drives, cameras, cell phones, or other smart phones and storage drives
  • Installation of personally owned software on Cornell owned equipment


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