Hardware and Software Standards

ITS establishes hardware and software standards for academic and administrative departments based on current technology available and the common need of campus users. ITS adheres to these standards to maintain a reliable and efficient computing environment for all users on the SSU network. The primary considerations for hardware and software standards are:

  • Optimize the levels of support ITS can provide
  • Manage the cost of acquisition, refresh and support of technology
  • Improve service via group policy management (automatic deployment)
  • Ensure network compatibility for upgrades and security

Computer Hardware Standards

Two sets of standards are offered – New Purchase Minimum Hardware Standards and Minimum Hardware Standards.

When a new computer is purchased the hardware specifications of the new computer must meet or exceed the New Purchase Minimum Hardware Standards listed below. The standard computer listed on ITS website will always meet the required specifications.

The current Minimum Hardware Standards are provided to represent the minimum requirements to support the efficient running of Windows 7 64-bit operating system.

IBM Compatible Computer
Minimum Hardware Standards New Purchase Minimum Hardware Standards
Windows Operating System 64-bit Windows Operating System 7 64-bit
P4 Processor Intel® Core™ i3-41600 processor (3.6 GHz)
500 GB Hard Drive 500 GB Hard Drive or 256 GB SSD Hard Drive
Macintosh Computer
Minimum Hardware Standards New Purchase Minimum Hardware Standards
OS 10.x or later OS 10.x or later
2.8 GHz Intel Core Duo 3.2 GHz Intel Core Duo
500 GB Hard Drive 500 GB Hard Drive or 256 GB SSD Hard Drive

These standards do not depict the machine's ability to solely operate on the network, rather these standards are intended to ensure all systems are able to adequately make use of the campus network resources and can perform at the level of service that the campus community expects. Additionally, these standards ensure that all systems are capable of running the standard campus software items such as anti-virus, current Windows OS, all OS Updates, current Office Suite, etc., and can accept updates as they are released by the vendor.

ITS will work with the departments to identify and provide guidance on replacing any computers that do not meet the provided minimum hardware standards. Upon replacement, old machines will be removed and provisioned for removal as a University-owned asset.

Standard Operating System

The current standard operating system installed on campus computers is Windows 7 64-bit. Understanding needs of individual departments vary; Windows 7 32-bit is also installed on computers in specific administrative areas, to remain compatible with other vendor software requirements.

If a computer has an earlier version of Windows OS (i.e. Windows XP) installed please submit an email to so ITS can discuss options regarding the computer.

Standard Software Installation

All computers that are installed by ITS technicians will be delivered with a standard set of software.

Standard Software Administrative areas include:
Windows 7 64-bit Microsoft Office (current version)
CARS Feith
Internet Explorer (current supported version) Symantec Anti-virus
Adobe Reader Adobe Flash
Quicktime Adobe Shockwave
Standard Software Academic areas include:
Windows 7 64-bit Microsoft Office (current version)
Internet Explorer (current supported version) FIM
Adobe Reader Adobe Flash
Adobe Shockwave Adobe Air
Microsoft Silverlight Google Chrome
Mozilla Firefox Opera
Java Symantec Anti-virus
Quicktime ALEKS Plugin
LabStats TestGen Plugin

Additional Software Installation

Administrative and academic areas will have the need for additional software to be installed on computers for work and academic instruction, beyond the standard software installed. ITS will test and install any requested software needed by the department. The software installed must be University-owned and properly licensed. The department will be responsible for maintaining the license information provided by the vendor.

Users should submit an email to requesting the software be installed. ITS staff will work in a timely manner to test and install the software.

Software Support

ITS staff will support all software, both standard and additional software, installed on ITS -managed computers. In some situations, a ITS Technician may need to work with the primary user on campus to resolve the problem. This collaborative effort will ensure the software functions as expected.

ITS manages upgrades and updates for all standard software, such as Windows and anti-virus updates, on a regular basis with no actions required by the end user (exception is a possible restart of the computer). If an upgrade to standard software is required that cannot be performed automatically, ITS will create a project and work directly with departments/users to ensure the upgrade is completed to satisfaction.

If software that is not included in the standard software category needs to be upgraded/updated, the department/user who initially requested the software installation will submit an email to with the details about the upgrade/update. It is best to upgrade software in academic labs between semesters based on the limited availability of academic labs during the semester.