The Catholic University of America

Computing FAQ for Faculty and Staff

This document contains frequently asked questions about CUA computing in academic and administrative offices by CUA faculty and staff.


Questions and Answers

Who provides and configures the computer in my office?

Technology Services is the central IT organization for the university. Your department provides the funding for your computer. Each computer is delivered with a standard set of software


How do I request assistance if I am having a problem with my computer hardware or software, or if I have a question about computer issues in general?

The Service Desk is open for telephone calls 24/7, and for walk-in service from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday-Friday. You can submit an online trouble ticket 24 hours a day at


How do I request emergency support after hours?

TS will dispatch a technician after hours only for outages that affect multiple users or critical infrastructure such as the network. Department heads have been informed of the procedure for requesting after hours emergency service. Please contact your supervisor if you believe such service is necessary so that he or she may request it.

If you know that you need to use certain computing equipment after hours, please test it the way you will be using it beforehand (i.e., during the standard work week) to ensure that there is sufficient time to resolve any problems you may encounter.

Remember that you can browse the knowledge center section of the CUA web site for information that may help you resolve your problem.


I am a new employee. How do I get a network logon username and password?

Network logon accounts are created automatically when your employee information is entered by the Human Resources. Human Resources will provide this on your first day. 


I don't like my assigned username; can it be changed?

Usually not. Network logon usernames are assigned automatically using an algorithm that takes into account maximum length requirements and other factors, including the fact that certain applications used at the university do not allow user IDs to be reused. Many other computing resources are based on this assigned name. It is therefore technically difficult to change these names once assigned.

The only time that network logon username change requests are accommodated is when a person's legal name has changed and the new name has been registered with the Office of Human Resources. Changing to the account new name is time-intensive for the person whose legal name has changed since data must be moved to a new account.


Where should I store my files?

Files that you create for your department work should be stored on one of your department's Google Share Drives. Please check with your supervisor or chair to learn which share should be used for particular projects.

Both faculty and staff have unlimited quota in Google. To access this you can visit Google's instuctions

You should not store your files on your computer's hard drive. The hard drive is not backed up by TS, so if the drive crashes or experiences other problems, your files may be lost permanently. You can purchase an encrypted hard drive off of our storefront if you should choose to back up your hard drive. You can access our storefront at

Files containing covered data must be stored on the proper Google share, never on your computer's hard drive or removable media.


How do I read my CUA e-mail?

Faculty and staff should use CUA's Cardinal Mail in Google Apps for Educaiton. You can access your emaill here:

Your e-mail username is <network logon username> E.g., if your network logon username is ALINCOLN, your e-mail address is

E-mail sent by university faculty and staff is expected to be related to university academic or administrative business and is stored on university-owned servers or computers. E-mail messages sent by university employees through the university's e-mail system are university records.

Please refer to the Employee Electronic Communications and Resources Policy and related Employee Electronic Communications Guidelines.


Should I reply to this official-looking message asking for my CUA username and password?

Absolutely not! You may receive junk e-mail (spam) that claims to be from the CUA Service Desk, the e-mail or web administrator or "management," asking you to confirm their CUA username and password. Often, the pretext given in these junk e-mail messages is a system upgrade or potential violation of terms and conditions. These messages are scams designed to "phish" (fish) for your logon credentials in order to compromise the computer systems. You should NEVER send your CUA username and password in e-mail. Instead, please contact Technology Services to report receiving a suspicious message.


Why should I use a password protected screen saver?

Many faculty and staff members have access to confidential information that is stored in Cardinal Station, network file shares or in e-mail folders. If you walk away from your computer even for a few moments, someone could enter your office or work area and gain access to this information. It is therefore very important that you always use a password-protected screensaver that is set to activate after 10 minutes or less of idle time.

You should lock your screen manually whenever you step away from it, even for a moment.  To do this, press Ctrl-Alt-Del and press Enter (or click "Lock this computer").


My office has hired a temp for a few days; can I let this person use my computer account?

No. ""Permitting another individual to use your account, either by sharing your credentials or by logging in on behalf of another" is an activity that is explicitly prohibited by the university's Acceptable Use policy. You should never tell anyone, including TS support staff, your network logon password. Neither should you log on to your account yourself, but then let someone else use it.

Each university employee or contractor must have his or her own computer account if he or she must log onto university computers or access network resources such as file shares. Please contact Technology Services to request that a computer account be created for your temporary worker. You should do this at least two business days before the account is needed.


I am a university administrator and my administrative assistant needs to access my calendar and files; can I let my assistant use my computer account?

No. "Permitting another individual to use your account, either by sharing your credentials or by logging in on behalf of another" is an activity that is explicitly prohibited by the university's Acceptable Use policy. You should never tell anyone your network logon password. Neither should you log on to your account yourself, but then let someone else use it.

Each department has a Google Share Drive where departmental files can be stored. Folders can be created on the common share to better organize these files.Your supervisor can request you have access to this share. Your supervisor can also delegate calendars and other mailboxes to you. 



Should I turn my computer off when I go home?

Yes, your computer, monitor and any equipment that is directly attached to your computer, such as a printer or scanner, should be powered off when you leave for the day. This reduces the university's power consumption and improves the security of the network.

Do not power off network equipment such as departmental network-attached printers. These are already configured to enter an energy-saving "sleep" mode after a period of time, and must remain powered on to be accessible from the network.


How do I get access to financial/budget data for my department?

The financial system may be accessed through a link in Cardinal Station. (The financials system must be accessed from a computer on the main campus network.) To request access to the system, download the Request for Access to Cardinal Financials form (Microsoft Word) and follow the instructions on the form.


I like to use Internet Explorer toolbars and other similar software; is this a bad idea?

Yes. Most Internet Explorer toolbars are configured to send information about your browsing habits or other computer activities back to their manufacturer. Since you do not know what information is being sent, you should not use these toolbars. Internet Explorer and other browsers such as Google Chrome, have the built in ability to block pop-up windows, making the use of an add-on toolbar unnecessary for this purpose.

If you are a faculty or staff person with access to sensitive data such as personal information about students or employees, financial information or student grades or records, you should never install extra software such as IE toolbars, desktop search software or other free software downloaded from the Internet on your computer.


I need additional software to do my job; how do I get it?

The software provided on the computer issued to you by the university is normally sufficient to accomplish most work-related functions. Most faculty and staff do not require any additional software to do their research or work. If additional software is required, it is purchased by your department unless there is a valid volume license agreement in place for the software.

If you do require extra software, your department, whether academic or administrative, should first contact Technologoy Services by submitting an online ticket or calling the Service Desk. TS will determine whether a volume license is already in place for the software and whether the software is likely to conflict with other installed software or with the operation of the campus network.

Only software purchased by the university or through a university-related grant should be installed on computers that are owned by the university; do not install personally-owned software on university computers. Your department must maintain records of all software purchases for audit purposes.


I want a new computer/bigger monitor/different mouse/personal printer/extra peripheral. How can I get it?

TS supports standard equipment only, so your department would need to purchase any additional computer equipment or accessories. For computers, please read the "Purchasing Computing Hardware with University Funds" document. Please follow your normal departmental procedures to request these. Your department should contact Technology Services before purchasing additional printers, as only certain models and configurations can be supported.

Please consult your supervisor if you believe your computer is too slow. Your department can request one or more of its computers be evaluated by TS for replacement or upgrade. If the computer needs to be replaced, your department would have to purchase a new one through our storefront. 


I bought a wireless router/Airport appliance at the computer store. Can I connect it in my office?

No. Improper installation or configuration of networking devices such as hubs, switches, routers and wireless devices can severely disrupt the operation of the campus network. All networking devices intended for use on the campus network must be specified, purchased, configured and installed only by TS for this reason.

Examples of devices that must not be used include wireless routers and access points such as those made by Linksys, Netgear and others; Apple AirPort; Apple Time Capsule and other NAS appliances.

Wireless networking is being deployed in phases campus-wide. You can check the "Wireless Networking" page to see which buildings have wireless networking at present.


How do I access CUA resources from outside of campus?

Most CUA computing services such as access to your email and Cardinal Station are available to you from anywhere on the Internet by following links from or No extra software is required; just use a standard browser. Most people find that they are able to do what they need using only web browser access.

Faculty or staff who do need to access to certain administrative systems from home should contact their dean or supervisor so that he or she may request this access on your behalf. Remote access to CUA's administrative systems is provided through terminal services. If you are running Windows 7 or later, you can access terminal services using the Remote Desktop Connection utility found under Accessories. Apple Mac OS users will need to download and install the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection utility. (This tool also is included with Microsoft Office for Macintosh.)