Yorktown Update: September 6, 2011

I’m always so excited to welcome students back to school after the summer, and today was no exception. This was my first experience with the vibrant student body here at Yorktown, and it was a pleasure to work alongside you all for the first of many days to come. Much is afoot in APS these days, so here’s the latest information I have on a variety of subjects.

Old Shared Files on New Network

Thanks to my main man Raj and a borrowed large-capacity external drive, I’ve manually moved our files from the old shared drive on the old network to the new shared drive on the new network. At this point, everything I can move, I’ve moved. You can still get directly to the old shared drive using an old computer with your old credentials if you don’t see something specific. (Some of the files were corrupted or otherwise “weird,” and I did not move those.)

Snail-like Email

Many users are reporting slow response time from the Outlook email client. I have raised this issue to the Ed Center and will advise when I have more information. I, too, have noticed this, so it’s not just you!

Workstation Security

When you walk away from your computer, please get in the habit of holding down the Windows key, pictured below, and then pressing L on your keyboard. This will lock your workstation and prevent anyone from accessing your account. Now that student machines do not require passwords, some students may simply walk up to your logged-in computer and go to town. This happened today! Please get in the habit of locking your computer when you’re not at your desk.


The Windows Key
The Windows key, located in the lower left hand area of PC computer keyboards.

Student User Names and Passwords

Students are being loaded into the APS user directory this week. Soon, students will be able to use their student user names and passwords to log in to Blackboard, the wireless network (yes, individual student authentication!), and network drive storage space.

  • Default student user name: Student ID number
  • Default student password: Six digit date of birth (MMDDYY)

Guest Wireless Network

The new APS.Guest wireless network will be available soon. My office will provide resources for the school to ensure everyone can access this information.

Missing Emails? Check your Junk Trunk!

Your Outlook junk mail filter is a learning filter and needs to be trained. Check your junk mail regularly this early in the year. (By default it’s on the left hand side in your Outlook client, underneath Deleted Items.) If you see mail that isn’t junk (like some emails from students or families that are getting caught), right-click the email. At the bottom of the menu that appears, mouse over Junk, then select Not Junk. Follow the directions that appear to help ensure emails from that user are never again called Junk!

Remove USB Drives When Booting

Users around APS are reporting significant problems caused by leaving USB flash drives inserted when turning computers on. To be safe, or if you experience problems, remove all USB flash drives before turning on your computer.

EasyGrade Pro Web Edition Training

Please plan to leave your planning period free, or before or after school, on September 13. EasyGrade Pro Web Edition training will be provided in Lab A-372. For users who would rather work independently, an email will be sent September 12 with training materials. Attendance at an orientation is not mandatory, but is highly recommended.

Activate your Blackboard Classes

Classes in Blackboard are only visible to students after you activate them. To do so from inside your class page:

  1. On the left hand side, under “Course Management,” find the Control Panel
  2. Click Customization
  3. Click Properties
  4. Scroll down to Section 3, “Set Availability,” and next to Make Course Available, click Yes
  5. Scroll down to Section 7, “Submit,” and click Submit

Name Changes

All changes in your name in APS systems must be processed through Personnel. Please do not contact Sara Witherow directly on this issue.

Laptop Not Connecting?

Laptops need to be hard-wired to the APS network for a couple of reboots before they pick up the wireless network, as a general rule. If you’ve done this, be sure the physical switch on the laptop is in the “on” position.

Google Group Creation

At the moment, each school’s ITC needs to create new Google Groups. Just let me know the name you want for the group, as well as the desired address (I will name all Yorktown groups yhs_yournamehere@apsva.us) and I’ll make you the owner, so you can populate and manage the group.

Recovering Bookmarks

Thanks to Eva Lilienthal and John Landry, we have a great solution in place for you to recover bookmarks you stored on the old network. You’ll need to start at a computer on the old network, which you can find in a teacher work center for instructional and in the main office for admin. Bring a USB flash drive with you before you begin.

On the old machine

  1. Log in using your old (firstname_lastname) account credentials. If you forgot your password, call the help desk (2847).
  2. Once booted, insert your USB drive
  3. Double-click the Computer icon on your Desktop
  4. Double-click the H:/ drive
  5. Find the folder user.cfg and right-click on that folder
  6. Mouse over Send To…
  7. Click on Removable Disk

The folder and its contents will be transferred to your USB drive. (Confirm that it’s there. If it’s not, repeat the process.) Once you’ve done this, shut down the computer, withdraw your USB drive, and move to your computer on the new network.

On the new machine

First, we need to copy the folder from your flash drive to the clipboard:

  1. Log in using your new (firstname.lastname) account credentials.
  2. Once booted, insert the same USB flash drive you used in last section
  3. Click the round Start button in the lower left hand corner, then click Computer
  4. Find and double-click Removable Disk
  5. Double-click the folder user.cfg
  6. Double-click the folder IE
  7. Right-click Favorites
  8. Click on Copy

Next, we need to paste that folder onto your new network:

  1. Next, click the round Start button in the lower left hand corner again, then click Computer
  2. Double click Local Disk (C:)
  3. Double click Users
  4. Double click on your user name
  5. Right click Favorites
  6. Click Paste

Finally, as an option, you can rename the new copy of this old folder so you know what it is:

  1. Double click Favorites
  2. Right click the new Favorites folder you see here
  3. Click Rename
  4. Type “Old Favorites”

To import these favorites into Firefox:

  1. Open Firefox
  2. Hold down ALT and press F on your keyboard to open the File menu
  3. Click Import…
  4. Click Next
  5. Click Next
  6. Click Finish

To import these favorites into Chrome:

  1. Open Chrome
  2. Hold down ALT and press F on your keyboard to open the File menu
  3. Mouse over Bookmarks
  4. Click Import Bookmarks and Settings
  5. Click Import

That’s All Folks!

Thanks, everyone! Stay tuned for further updates. I’m excited to say I’ll be kicking off my first week with students at Yorktown by going into several classrooms to get classes up and running with Google Docs. I’m looking forward to working with all of you in the near future!