Frequently Asked Questions
This section is intended to offer answers to some IT questions that are regularly received from incoming students. This page will be added to and adjusted over time. If you are a new incoming student and have an IT-related question that you don’t see answered here please feel free to contact the IT Help Desk at (989) 463-7303.
Q: What type of computer should I buy for use at Alma College?
A: If you plan on buying a new computer for use on campus, you will need to know some information about our network before making your purchase. If you plan on buying a Windows-based computer; be sure to get one that runs Windows XP or Windows 8. If you are buying a Macintosh computer OS X 10.5 or 10.6 versions will be sufficient for use on our network. Connection to the Internet in the student housing is available via ethernet connections. Your computer should be equipped with an Ethernet card to be able to connect to the network. Also, an Ethernet cable is required to complete this connection. Wireless is available in every building on campus. It is important to NOT have an anti-virus program running on your machine when you get to campus. We require and provide for free Sophos, an anti-virus program that updates automatically while your machine is on our network. Each residence hall has a designated student (RCC) who is available to assist you in getting your computer registered. You can set up a work order to have an RCC come to your room and look at your computer by calling the Helpdesk (x7303), connecting to the Helpdesk online (helpdesk.alma.edu), or by coming to the office (lower level of the library building) in person.
Q: What removable media should I purchase for transferring and storing my digital files?
A: We recommend that you use USB Drives (memory sticks, thumb drives) or record to blank CDs or DVDs. Macs can read and write to PC-formatted discs, but PCs cannot read Mac-formatted discs. The IT department does not sell supplies, but you can find these and other items at many local stores, including College Corner Coffee & Books.