IT solutions for students to connect to a BU computer remotely

IT Services has been working hard to deliver a number of digital solutions to support students in studying remotely. This includes various options for connecting to the university to use the applications and software available on BU computers – both for timetabled online sessions, and for self-study.

If students need access to a BU computer or software as part of a teaching session, please see a short summary of the various solutions available from Monday 28 September below. If computers are not usually used as part of your teaching, then students will be able to access what they need from the quick links and log-in services page.  Please also make them aware of the IT pages on the Student Portal for general IT information.

Solutions available to students for connecting to a BU computer:

  • VMWare Horizon –  This provides access to different ‘pools’ of computers on campus including a standard BU Windows desktop where students can access AppsAnywhere, or if needed, a high-powered BU Windows Workstation desktop (please only direct students to this ‘pool’ if you would normally be delivering your teaching from these computers).
  • Leostream (through NoMachine) – This will provide access either to a BU standard Mac desktop or if needed, a high-powered BU Mac Workstation desktop or a BU Linux Workstation desktop.

We have developed a remote access user guide covering Horizon and Leostream (through NoMachine) to help you and your students.

programme ‘look-up tool’ has also been developed for students to direct them to the most appropriate solutions for their programme (e.g. if your programme uses Mac and Windows devices, they will be shown links to download both the Leostream (through NoMachine) and Horizon applications. If students need to use different computers for different teaching sessions, please advise them in advance of the timetabled session which type of computer to select so they can download the relevant application.

Details on the computers that are available to students for teaching sessions and for self-managed study, as well as detail of which ‘pools’ of computers students should connect to remotely can be found on the Staff Intranet.

  • VPN (Virtual private network) – If students have an appropriate computer, they can request a VPN account through the IT Service Desk. This provides access to on-campus resources, such as the Renderfarm and license servers, but uses the computer power of the user’s personal computer to do it. Windows users can also access most AppsAnywhere apps as if they were on campus.

We have developed a VPN user guide to help students connect to the BU VPN.

IT Services has tested these solutions however it is important academic staff and students also test the solutions to ensure users can connect to and use these various services. If you have been contacted about this testing, we would greatly appreciate your participation and ask that you complete it within the specified timeframe and report back on what you have tested, and the type of device you completed your testing from.

Students booking study spaces and computers on campus

Students can come onto campus to use a BU computer, however this should be booked in advance. IT Services has implemented the MyPC booking system for students to book Open Access Centre and EBC computers, and we have a developed a MyPC user guide to help them use this system. Library spaces can now also be booked via Libcal. Find out more about these booking solutions on the student portal. The Laptop Loan service is now available from the Sir Michael Cobham Library. The Laptop Loans service from the Student Centre and Bournemouth House Library will be available in due course. 

Next steps

We plan on communicating the flowchart, and the various solutions and their user guides to students from Monday morning.

As these solutions are available so close to the start of teaching, please do bear with the IT team, who are working hard to make sure you have the resources you need in time for your teaching sessions. Over the coming weeks we will continue to work with you to make the necessary refinements to these solutions and their support materials. The IT Service Desk are available to assist you with any IT queries, and we ask that you report any issues you encounter so that we can quickly work towards a resolution.

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