Policy Portal

University Policy

Computer Equipment and Software Support

Policy Number: 3349-09-20
Effective Date: 09/01/2012
Responsible Department: Information Technology
Applies To: All University Employees

A. Purpose

  1. The purpose of this policy is to define standards for hardware, software, and support at the Northeastern Ohio Medical University (NEOMED).

B. Scope

  1. The scope of this policy includes all personnel at NEOMED.

C. Definitions

  1. “Authorized User” or “User” is a person who has been provided with a username and password, for their use only through legitimate university process after verification of identification by the University’s IT department.
  2. “Information Technology” (IT) is the administrative unit responsible for supporting university owned or leased hardware and software.
  3. A computer lab is defined as three or more computers used by faculty, staff, or students for general use, research, in a classroom setting, or as a component of a class.


In order to make the best use of NEOMED resources, standard hardware and software specifications have been developed and are defined in the Information Technology Standards and Timelines. Employees are responsible for familiarizing themselves with this document. Non‐standard hardware/software will not be supported by IT, nor will computers that are not owned by NEOMED.

  1. Hardware
    1. New Hardware: The PC Replacement Plan is administered by IT and is designed to provide regular replacement on a four (4) year cycle of standard desktop and laptop computers for faculty and staff employed by NEOMED and located on the NEOMED campus. The standard specifications for desktop computers are re‐evaluated once per year in accordance with the PC Replacement Plan. Standard hardware specifications are defined in IT Standards and Timelines. IT delivers replacement computers with standard NEOMED software. Deployment of desktop computers with the standard image results in faster turnaround time for computer installations. Computers being replaced with a standard desktop computer will be provided at no additional cost to the department where the new computer is being delivered. Departments desiring other than a standard desktop computer must pay the difference in cost above that of a standard desktop computer. The additional cost for the non‐standard computer will be determined by IT. Computers being replaced must be returned to IT. IT will use the returned computers for graduate students, temporary help, or other needs that do not fall under the PC Replacement Plan at IT’s discretion. Personnel or departments wishing to keep their old computers must reimburse IT for the original cost of a standard desktop computer and IT, in compliance with Microsoft’s licensing agreement, will remove all software licensed to NEOMED and restore the computer back the state that it was received at NEOMED. Ownership of the computer must be transferred from NEOMED to the purchasing party.
    2. Existing Hardware: Existing hardware will be supported for the time periods specified in the University’s IT Standards and Timelines Policy. New hardware generations will be supported for four (4) years from the date of the purchase from the hardware vendor. Support in some cases may be contingent upon available manufacturer support during this four‐year cycle.
    3. Peripherals: Peripherals will be installed and supported as outlined in the University’s IT Standards and Timelines Policy. Support for peripherals is limited to certain standard vendors and configurations. No other peripherals are supported.Network printing capabilities are provided throughout the University. Use of network printers is encouraged to provide high quality print output for all campus departments. Desktop printers are not supported by IT.
  2. Software
    1. Operating Systems: Operating Systems or operating environments will be supported for the time period specified in the University’s IT Standards and Timelines Policy. Minimum hardware specifications are required for acceptable use of certain operating systems. Support in some cases may also be contingent upon available manufacturer support during this four‐year cycle.
    2. Desktop Software: Software that is fully supported by IT is specified in the University’s IT Standards and Timelines Policy. Software support is generally supported for the two most recent versions. Installation of a new Operating System should never be performed on a NEOMED computer without the knowledge and consent of IT.
    3. Software Licenses: Only legal copies of software will be installed and supported. The University requires one license for each installation or appropriate site licensing.
      The University holds several purchasing and licensing agreements with various software vendors, which entitles it to special pricing and/or discounts. NEOMED employees and authorized personnel may utilize the benefits of NEOMED negotiated rates when making computer software purchases as governed in the respective license/purchase agreements. (A list of specific software titles is included in IT Standards and Timelines). Any purchases made pursuant to the University’s existing agreement are governed under the software license agreement already in place for the software.
  3. Support Standards
    1. Desktop Support: IT will staff a help desk during business hours from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Off‐hours service will be limited to support for problems falling into the Urgent or Important categories as defined in the University’s IT Standards and Timelines. IT staff will make every reasonable effort to follow‐up and resolve issues according to the timeframes defined for each Service Request Category outlined in that policy.
      1. Service Level Support
        1. Full Support: Standard hardware/software noted in IT Standards and Timelines are fully supported by IT.  Resources and sources for additional assistance such as e‐mail discussion groups, user groups, web sites, product/vendor phone numbers, FAQ (frequently asked questions) and common problem/resolution lists, are available.
        2. Partial Support: Partial support will be provided to the following:
          1. Supported hardware running unsupported software will be supported to the extent possible but not to such length as to assure software problem resolution.
          2. Supported software running on unsupported hardware will be supported to the extent that fully supported software works properly.
        3. Limited Support: IT will not support any computer that is not owned by NEOMED. IT provides limited support of NEOMED‐owned computers if housed off the Rootstown campus, in the
          form of phone support, assuming the hardware and software are within the supported lists. If the problem cannot be resolved over the phone, an appointment must be made to bring the computer into the Desktop Support Office for further service. IT will not, under any circumstances, go to any off Rootstown campus or non‐NEOMED location to service NEOMED‐owned computers/equipment.
        4. No Support: Software NOT noted as supported running on unsupported hardware.
        5. Lab Support: Desktop Support is available to provide basic and routine service, maintenance, troubleshooting, consulting, or assistance with significant problems related to computer lab machines. Significant problems include: network connectivity issues and complete system failures. IT expects that computer lab users will NOT be installing any software or disabling virus protection.
  4. Standards Review & Enhancements: IT members will meet semi‐annually, to review hardware, software, and support standards and technology advances in order to make recommendations concerning the evolution of hardware/software standards.
  5. User Responsibilities: Responsible use of technology is part of the professional responsibilities of faculty, staff and students. User responsibilities include:
    1. Using standard hardware and software whenever possible;
    2. Communicating with other users in standard formats;
    3. Acquiring training in the use of their system, as necessary to do their jobs, by attending training classes, keeping available and reading instructions, manuals, etc.;
    4. Understanding and performing basic computer tasks, such as copying files, configuring settings, etc.; and
    5. Using their systems responsibly and ethically as University assets to do their jobs, in accordance with the Acceptable Use of Computing Resources Policy.
  6. Enforcement: Any user found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, from reprimand up to and including termination of employment.


Lisa Noland
Administrative Specialist
Phone: 330.325.6354
Email: lnoland@neomed.edu

Office of General Counsel

Northeast Ohio Medical University