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Information Technology Services

The College of Engineering and Computing's Information Technology Services (ITS) department is responsible for managing and maintaining the college's academic labs, information technology services and support for faculty and staff, network security, network infrastructure, servers, and associated services.

Access and Resources

 The university provides Windows Active Directory user accounts for all faculty, staff, and students. Your account must be authorized and authenticated to access the college's computing resources.

Student Accounts

We pull data from the Registrar's Office to grant student access to the academic labs. For access, you must be registered as an Engineering or Computing student, enrolled in an Engineering or Computing course, and have paid all fees required by the registrar.

Employee Accounts

Employees are granted access to computers and resources as needed by their departmental IT manager.

Account Problems

If you are having problems with your account, you can try reclaiming it before calling DoIT (777-1800).

Email Access

All students, faculty and staff are given a Microsoft Office 365 account, which includes an email account.

Spam and Phishing Management

Our email accounts are bombarded with spam every day, but you can take some steps to help ease the annoyances. If you receive a phishing attempt, report it to DoIT by forwarding it as an attachement, to

Distribution List Usage Policy

Our email distribution lists are intended for distributing information related to the college and its activities. Only faculty and staff are allowed to send messages via distribution lists.

If a student or organization needs to send mail to a distribution list, they should submit it to that organizations's advisor or departmental office for distribution.

Inappropriate use of the mail system includes, but is not limited to: spam, junk mail, personal solicitation, chain letters, and mail not related to the purpose or activities of the college.

Violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action such as, but not limited to, revoking mail access priveleges. Emails sent to CEC distribution groups in violation of this policy may be forwarded as an attachment to

Student membership on college and department distribution lists is mandatory while the student is still an active member of the college.

Wireless Network

If you have questions about accessing the wireless network, use the instructions below or contact DOIT at 777-1800.

Wired Network

The CEC network is comprised of a 100 Gigabit backbone uplinked to the University's network, with a Gigabit connection availble to every wall jack.

NOTE: Self-installing and patching CEC computer systems is a serious security vulnerability. This practice causes machines in the college to become infected and creates platforms for attackers to launch attacks. It is unacceptable in a networking environment such as ours and exposes the college to unnecessary and unacceptable liability.

Before a computer is attached to the network, it must be assigned to a qualified administrator. This administrator will be responsible for that computer's secure and virus free operation.

A qualified administrator is one who, in the least, accomplishes the following tasks:

  • Installs the operating system and its other services without having it susceptible to security compromise, which also includes the time during the install phase.
  • Installs and properly configures the anti-virus software, and auto updating/notification software of the operating system and its components.
  • After install, uses appropriate tools to verify a secure and fully patched installation.
  • Registers himself/herself with the appropriate security notification systems.
  • Responds accordingly to security and patch notifications in a timely manner.

Infected or Compromised Computers

Infected or compromised computers will have its network access revoked. Depending upon the situation, it may require only the network port to be disabled, but if it is severe enough, it could cause a building wing, or even the college's entire network to be disabled. Such a computer poses a serious risk to the college, the university and the Internet.

Network access will remain revoked until a qualified administrator has verified the threat is removed. Depending on the situation, this may require verification of all computers on the switch or port affected.

Infected or compromised computers must be removed from the network and have all disk partitions removed and reformatted. The software must be installed by a qualified administrator and verified before it can be allowed on the network.

The Microsoft Window's Remote Desktop Connection feature allows you to access a computer from another computer that is connected to the same local network or the internet. Once connected, you can use all the programs, files, and network resources from your home or laptop computer. This feature is NOT available in the college computer teaching labs.

To connect to a remote computer, follow these guidelines:

  • Both computers need to be connected to the Internet or local network to ensure network access. If you are connecting from outside the CEC network, a VPN connection to the CEC network must be established.
  • The target computer must have Remote Desktop enabled.
  • You must also have permission to connect to the target computer. This requires your login credentials to be added to the remote users list. In order to add permissions to connect to the remote users list, you need administrative privilages. In most cases this requires contacting your departmental IT administrator.
  • Please note: If you are trying to add your Engineering or DS credentials, a VPN connection must be established to resolve your login name.
  • State law requires multifactor authentication to access your computer from outside the network. Instructions for setting up remote desktop with Duo, the university-provided two factor authentication product, can be found here. For more information about USC's Duo implementation, please see this site.

These links include instructions on how to set up and troubleshoot a Remote Desktop Connection:

Students taking at least one engineering or computing course can obtain Microsoft and VMware software for free.

Microsoft makes several of their software packages and operating systems available for free to university students and faculty through their Azure Dev Tools for Teaching program.  Eligible students must be enrolled in at least one credit-based course by a member department. For more information on available product families please see the Azure Dev Tools for Teaching FAQ.

Creating an Account
  1. Using an InPrivate or Incognito browser go to the Microsoft Sign in Page click "Create one!" and enter your school email address.
  2. After entering your school-email address hit enter and type your desired password then hit "Next". You will be asked to verify your account by using the code that will be sent to your school-email address. Note: If you got the error: "This email address is already a Microsoft Account", you may proceed to the Accessing the Education Hub Store instructions below.
Accessing the Education Hub Store
  1. Using an InPrivate or Incognito browser go to Microsoft Azure.
  2. Click on the blue "Sign In" button and enter your school-provided email address and hit "Next".
    Note: Since your email address is already a Microsoft Account, there will be two (2) sign in options. Your school email address is in an Azure Active Directory or an Office 365, so you need to choose 'Work or school account'.
  3. Upon signing in, you may be asked to agree to the terms and conditions (for first time users). If not, you should see all the software titles available for download by searching the keyword "Education" and choose the "Education (preview)" from the list.
  4. Once you're on the Education Quick Start Pane, you'll see the software title list under the 'Software' menu.

Free VMware software is available 

  1. Send first name, last name, and USC username to 
  2. An invitation will arrive by email, please follow the instructions within carefully.
  3. To access after an account has been created, return to the following URL and select the Student Login option:

File Services

Network storage drives allow you to store files and data in a location easily accessed from any computer on or off campus as long as a network connection is available.

Network Storage

All students have a two gigabyte network storage drive for saving files and data. The space allows you to have roaming profiles in the college computer labs (your desktop and settings follow you around.) Your college drive will automatically be set up for you upon login in the labs. You can access your network drive by clicking on the Start button and then clicking Computer. You will see your drive under Network Locations.

Faculty and Staff can request access to the college file server for roaming profiles in the college labs through their Departmental IT Manager

If your network drive fails to load upon login, please see the Mapping a Network Drive information below to manually map your network drive on the file server.

Cloud Storage

We recommend using provided cloud services to store larger amounts of data. Your university Office 365 account comes with five terabytes of space in your OneDrive. Login with your USC email account and password to access your OneDrive. 

Accessing your Z: Drive Outside the Network

Your network storage drive is accessible from off-campus through a Virtual Private Network connection or VPN, which connects your personal computer to the engineering network. Once connected through the VPN you can map your Network Drive and access your saved data.

Mapping a network drive will enable you to access your shared files on the CEC college file server. All currently enrolled students are given file shares on the file server to save and transfer files. All shares have a maximium storage limit of two gigabytes. Faculty and staff can request college file share space as well through their Department IT Manager.

The following instructions are to map your network drive once you have connected to the Engineering network via VPN (see access by VPN below).

  1. On the Start menu, click Computer.
  2. In the next window, click Map Network Drive.
  3. In the Folder: input box, type \\\Z_your-user-name$. Put your user name where it says YOUR-USER-NAME and don't forget the $ on the end. Example: User name "smith5" maps to "\\\z_smith5$".
  4. Make sure the Reconnect at logon is Unchecked.
  5. Click on Connect using a "different user name".
    Type "DS\your-user-name"
  6. Put your user name where it says YOUR-USER-NAME and type in your password. Click OK.
  7. Click Finish. You are now able to access your network drive. Simply open My Computer or Windows Explorer and open your drive.

To access your home directory on the college's network from a remote Internet connected computer, you will need to setup a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection on your computer. You will only need to do this if you will be connecting via the Internet from a cable modem, DSL connection, or some other connection that uses the Internet. You may need to use the VPN if you are connecting to college resources from a non-CEC building on campus or the wireless network as well.

Setting up the VPN connection allows you to:

  • Connect to your desktop via a Remote Desktop Connection.
  • Map your network drive.
  • Access the library's online journals and databases.
  • Connect to internal resources not available through the University firewall.

In an effort to enhance security, remote access is disabled by default for all users. Users must keep their computer fully patched and virus-free with anti-virus software before remote access is granted. Remote access users with computers not properly patched or infected with viruses will have remote access privileges revoked.

UofSC VPN Services

The College of Engineering and Computing now uses the USC VPN service. Some research labs and college resources may require special VPN access. If you cannot access your resources from the USC VPN service, please contact your Department IT Manager for further help.

To gain access to the USC VPN, please visit the Division of IT web site.

Printable Instructions:

Labs and Capabilities

Software Title Sponsor
7-Zip ITS
Foxit Reader ITS
Firefox ITS
Google Chrome ITS
Print Manager Plus ITS
Office Proffessional Plus 2019 ITS
Windows 10 LTSC ITS
Arduino SDK CHE
AspenTech CHE
ChemSep CHE
Comsol CHE
National Instrument/Labview CHE
Matlab CHE
Maple CHE
Octave CHE
OLI (Aspen) CHE
Polymath CHE
AutoDesk AutoCAD CEE
AutoDesk Civil3D CEE
AutoDesk Storm & Sanitary Analysis CEE
GeoSlope CEE
LEAP Bridge Concrete CEE
MicroStation CEE
OpenRoads Designer CEE
R/R Studio CEE
Blender CSE
Eclipse CSE
Dr. Java CSE
Hugin CSE
Notepad++ CSE
Project 2019 CSE
Python 2.6, 2.7.18, 3.2 CSE
Scite CSE
SSH Secure Shell CSE
SQL Developer CSE
Visio 2019 CSE
Visual Studio Community Edition CSE
Unreal Engine CSE
Agilent Advanced Design System EE
Amesim EE
Ansoft/Ansys EM 18 EE
Abaqus ME
Ansys ME
Mathcad ME
Technomatix ME
Vic 2D ME
Vic 3D ME
Adobe Brackets IIT
Balsamiq Wireframes IIT
Cisco Packet Tracer IIT
Gimp IIT
MSSQL Workbench IIT
Oracle SQL Data Modeler IIT
Oracle SQL Developer IIT
PTB Essentials IIT
Wireshark IIT

Due to the high demand for open computer labs, we can only re-image the labs once at the beginning of each semester (fall and spring). A freeze is placed on changes and additions to lab software and lab imaging during each semester to protect the intergrity of the 100+ installed applications.

What software can be installed?

Software that is used for instructional purposes can be installed in the labs, but software for personal use cannot. The number of licenses required is the number of seats in the lab plus one for the image machine. For specific lab numbers, please see Facilities and Reservations. Trial or demo licenses are not allowed in the academic labs. These types of licenses are only meant for testing and are specifically prohibited from normal use while you are in trial or demo time period.

What is needed?

Before any software can be installed into the labs, it must have a sponsor. This can be either the faculty member requesting the software, or the department technical representative. If a department chooses a departmental representative to sponsor the application instead; that department's technical representative should be listed as the contact.

For installation, the sponsor must provide the following information to the Lab Management group:

  • A copy of the software
  • A printed copy of the software license agreement. This document will define the legal use of the software. For example, it may state that a program is only to be used for educational purposes. Normally this is the EULA (End User License Agreement).
  • A printed copy of some sort of purchase information. A receipt, proof of purchase, purchase requisition or something similar which states how many copies were purchased.
  • Specific installation instructions. If no instructions are given, the software will not be installed. The sponsor will install and test the software on a Windows 10 machine before requesting installation in the labs. 

Once all of the information listed above is available, the software sponsor will turn that in to the Lab Manager. The Lab Manager will then make all reasonable efforts to ensure that the software is installed into the latest image during the next imaging period which begins before each semester.

  • Keep the original installation media and provide a copy to the Lab Manager.
  • Keep the original purchase information and provide a copy to the Lab Manager.
  • Provide installation instructions for the Lab Manager to use to install the package.
  • Provide any updates/upgrades for the software (with instructions).
  • Test the software after it is installed in the labs to ensure proper functionality.
  • Handle any problem resolution/software debugging.

The ITS Helpdesk is responsible for servicing and maintaining the Academic Lab projectors and scanners. If you are currently having trouble with these devices, please contact the helpdesk at 777-7223 or go to Swearingen 1D35 during business hours for immediate assistance. After hours, please send email to to make sure that the problem is looked into the next day.



Every computer lab except B211 in 300 Main St and 1D39 in Swearingen has a projector available. You have the choice of hooking it up to a laptop or using the lab machine that it is already connected to.



Two scanners are available for student and faculty use and are located in labs 1D39 in the Swearingen Engineering Center and lab B211 in 300 Main St. Instructions on scanning in the CEC academic labs are located in the sidebar

The College of Engineering and Computing provides 250 "free" pages of print quota for each semester for the printers in the academic computer labs. These printers are provided to support students' academic classwork. These printers are not meant to be used by research labs or departmental PCs. For access and installation of research lab and departmental printers, please contact your Departmental IT Manager.

The printing quota system is not capable of representing a user's quota as a simple page count. It can only use a "money for printing" model. Therefore, one page is equivalent to one dollar to simplify accounting and provide an easy way to determine your remaining quota at a glance. ITS is not actually charging you a dollar per page.

Quota Details
  • All print jobs sent to printers in the college academic computer labs are tracked.
  • You receive 250 "free" pages per semester (Fall and Spring).
  • You receive 250 "free" pages for the entire summer.
  • Multiple sided printing is encouraged to save paper; however, keep in mind that two pages will be deducted from your quota when printing double sided because of the toner usage.
  • Additional pages may be added to your quota by bringing a 500 page, unopened ream of printer or copy paper with your username written on it to the Helpdesk in room 1D35 in Swearingen. This will add 150 pages to your quota. The other 350 pages in the ream go to offset the cost of toner, as most of our printing costs are in the toner, not paper. Please note that any remaining pages will be cleared out at the start of the next semester when the quotas are reset.
  • Warning: 3 hole punched reams of paper will not be accepted for additional prints.

PDF Printing Problems

We have seen numerous problems printing PDF documents in the last several years. Many times they are PDFs that come from Blackboard. If you are trying to print a PDF document and it is crashing the printers, try saving the document to your hard drive first. Then open the file and choose File -> Print. In the Print options, click the Advanced button. In the Advanced dialog, check the box marked "Print as image". Click OK, then click Print.

Horizon View allows you to access an academic lab computer remotely. VPN is not required to use Horizon View to access the labs as it has encryption built into the Blast Extreme protocol it runs on. Once connected you are allowed to fully utilize all the resources of the computer you are connected to (except you can't print to the lab printers!) You are able to use all the programs, files, and network resources from your home or laptop computer.

There is a two hour time limit on each session. You will be disconnected without warning at the end of the session. You have 15 minutes after a forced disconnect to reconnect to avoid losing unsaved work.

You are required by the State of SC to use multifactor authentication to access your computer from outside the network. For more information about USC's Duo implementation, please see this brochure. The Horizon View client will prompt you for Duo multifactor authentication when you log in.



The College of Engineering and Computing utilizes Roaming Profiles to help users maintain a consistent working environment when moving from computer to computer. Roaming profiles are the mechanism that allows you to have the same "look and feel" on your desktop as well as the same browser bookmarks and application specific settings across all college labs.

All new student accounts are set up with roaming profiles by default.

A user profile is all the data for one specific user. This includes the data in your Documents Folder, all your user interface settings for each program, and even your mouse pointer speed and font settings. Windows is designed to store this data in one location, such as the local computer's hard drive or on a file server. Every time you log into a computer, it loads your user profile data along with the software you have set to load at startup.

A roaming profile is user data that is stored on a server, and it is downloaded to the PC whenever a user logs in and is resaved to the server every time the user logs out. This allows the user to access their information and settings no matter what computer they log into.

A local profile stores the data locally to the one computer currently is use, and very little data is transmitted between the PC and the server when the users are logged on and off. This causes reduced log in times but data and settings will not follow you to other computers and losses of data experienced.

Profile Corruption

Keeping your profile small is the first line of defense against profile corruption. If a user puts too much data in their profile, it could take a very long time to transfer all that data whenever you log on or off. This leads to profile corruption. A corrupted profile can cause print jobs to fail or become corrupt, software instability, and even loss of changed settings and unsaved data.

Preventing Profile Corruption

Your roaming profile is saved in a file folder with a .pds file extension on the file server. In order to keep this file folder small and avoid corruption, do not save documents inside this folder. The Windows default folder for saving files is the Documents folder located in your .pds profile.

Saving to this default location is number one cause of profile corruption and should be avoided by creating personalized folders located in the root directory of your shared drive and saving all your data files there. Saving files on the Desktop can also have the effect of corrupting your roaming profile.

Password Security

Passwords are vital for system security. Your password is your first line of defense to ensure your account is not tampered with and your data and personal information is not compromised.

Password Expiration

In order to ensure a secure and effective password, it should be changed on a regular basis. The UofSC password expiration schedule is set to every 6 months. Once your password has expired it can be changed at

Password Lockouts

If you are unable to remember your password or you mistype it five times, your account will become locked for a period of one hour. If your account is locked and you need to have it reset immediatley, please reset it at


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