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ITPG Meeting Minutes - 2010-8-19

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Attendees:

Arlene Allen, David Bosso, Saturnino Doctor, Doug Drury, Ann Dundon, Randall Ehren, Richard Kip, Elise Meyer, Steve Miley, Alan Moses, Mike Oliva, Ben Price, Tom Putnam, Fuzzy Rogers, Andy Satomi, Glenn Schiferl, Kevin Schmidt, Deborah Scott, Chris Sneathen, Heidi Straub, Chas Thompson, Paul Weakliem, Jim Woods

Administrative Items

  1. The group approved the Minutes of 07/15/10 meeting that were posted on 8/12/10.  The DRAFT designation will now be removed. 

Informational Items

CIO Report - Tom Putnam

If you have an application that accesses data from the mainframe, please let Doug Drury or Carrie Frandsen (Enterprise Risk Management) know.  They are assembling a list of dependent applications.  SIS and FIS are the biggest.  Even applications that use the mainframe as an intermediary should be included.  Someone asked whether the Data Warehouse is a solution for some of these dependent applications.  GauchoSpace may be on list.  Some applications access the mainframe directly, and others rely on SIS applications for data.  The Data Warehouse as we know it, it will be replaced by UCLA tools.

UC-wide basis: There is a group looking at PPS, initially made up of controllers.  There are currently 11 different versions because of individual business processes. (SB is the only campus that hasn't modified PPS.) HR folks are now involved.  The group is reorienting itself - instead of replacing PPS, they are now considering building 4-5 separate components instead, e.g., an HRIS that is separate from time keeping, an effort distribution system, and what cuts the paychecks.  UCSB is represented by Karl and Sandra Featherson.

The Regents issued a statement to seek out administrative efficiencies, e.g., PPS.  UCSB’s FIS effort is an example, and thus may benefit from a zero interest loan.  The ITLC wants to influence these efforts.  There is a need to standardize on principles.  They could identify two exemplars, e.g., UCLA and Kuali and get people to move to one or the other.  In addition, there is interest in consolidating administrative areas here on campus and committees have been formed.  Are the two efforts going to fit together?  What ways can we save money – everyone says that you should standardize IT stuff.  We should hear discussion this fall about creating groups to achieve standardization and efficiencies.  There will be efforts to establish working groups in several areas.  The ITPG may be proposed, but we may be too big.  There is an In-house proposal looking at business processes that can be more efficient.  Some may be worthwhile, some leave alone, some not worth it.  All need $ investment.  If there is no investment nothing will happen.

Additional text may be added after some clarification of my notes.

UCOP Risk Management looks at costs and UC insures ourselves against costs of risks, e.g., PII disclosure.  There are companies that will insure for call center costs.  They went forth and acquired such insurance.  There is a catch, they paid for the insurance, but the policy requires us to follow a few rules.  We should have a security policy, a standard way of handling breaches, Antivirus software, firewalls, reasonable precautions, mandate encryption or prohibit storage on mobile device of PII or PHI.  We should insure that laptops containing sensitive data are encrypted with whole data encryption.  This is now covered in BUS-80 Insurance Programs for Information Technology Systems.  It includes a mandate that all PII is encrypted at rest.  ITPSO will discuss this at a meeting at UCSF.  Is there a timeframe to comply?  What about vendor products?

UC’s Education Technology Leadership Group (ETLG) includes George Michaels and others who teach faculty how to teach with technology.  It too seeks some software standards for video conferencing.  UCD signed a systemwide license for Adobe Connect and made it available to people throughout for a low price.  UCSB Student Affairs bought their own for Admissions Outreach.  UCD is going to drop it.  They are asking ITLC to continue to support this.  The recent system-wide SPSS agreement has been good.  For UCD, free-riders swamped their effort.  If there is an advantage, there is overhead of administering the license.  One approach is to find a standardized student course materials fee, and do it throughout the system.  UCB made a proposal for a new rule that allows technology fees.  This was 1.5 years ago when fees were raised, and the economy tanked.  The UC President and Regents said no.  There's an effort afoot to do multi-campus enrollment, e.g., remote access to courses.  There is activity still going on looking at whether we can educate via distance education, which could be cheaper, require fewer buildings, and allow more students to get an education.  The Faculty on this campus are interested in blended modes of course delivery, e.g., GauchoSpace.

CISO Report - Karl Heins

The new ECP committee (chaired by EVC Lucas) has been formed and includes both Meta Clow and Karl.  The ECP quick fix has been implemented by changing the implementation procedures rather than the policy.  This change now allows scanning to make sure we are complying with HIPAA law for access to medical records.

IT security training is continuing.  There will be instructor led training for Admissions on 8/26.  We are looking into HIPAA training.

Subcommittee Reports

Backbone Engineering Group (BEG) - Elise Meyer

They are scheduling a meeting for 9/9 to review the first draft of the Division 27 document.

Security Working Group (SEC-WG) – Kevin Schmidt

Andrew is continuing to work on disk encryption solutions.  They are now looking at PGP based on information from ITPSO.  The effort to groom DNS traffic will need to wait until after the campus DNS servers are reorganized. This reorganization will implement the best practice to separate authoritative and recursive servers.  There should be no change for customers of ns1 and ns2, however if you are running a delegated name server, then you will need to make changes for zone transfers.  Virtual Router Forwarding is being considered for implementation this winter to isolate specific research traffic.

10 Gigabit Core Upgrade: Site preparation is the biggest delay.  PSB North will be first location to switch over to a new core router, which could be as early as next week.  The switch shouldn't be disruptive.  In other locations we need to make big changes that won't allow moving back.  There will be multiple outages.  We are also moving wireless APs to the new controllers.  We now have controller redundancy and more capabilities, in addition to new APs.  We started with the APs on Tuesday.  The plan is to migrate and replace.  We will now have the technical capability to separate out APs to create new wireless LANs, e.g., in Engineering I to have a wireless LAN that was just in that building to support something like an automated bot thing that had a shared key. 

Web Standards and Content Working Group (WSG) - Ann Dundon

They met on 8/17.  They reported on the formation of the UC Electronic Accessibility Leadership Team.  48 people attended their web accessibility workshop, which included a live screen reader demo.  There was a lot of positive response, and there is a podcast available.  A regular activity is to review the web guide and they are looking at suggested imagery resources and tools.  Their approach would be to remove them from the web guide and put them on it.ucsb.edu to avoid appearance of endorsing commercial products.  This change will need to go through the normal approval procedure.  They have started planning for their next training activity.  (NB: Their next meeting is scheduled on September 21, 2010.)

ITPG Communications - Ann Dundon

They are looking at a few usability and features to implement.  They are also looking for new members, to allow rotation.  Both meeting information and a Feature Request List are on the site.

Identity Management Subcommittee (IdM)

They have not met since our last meeting.  Matt has completed his schema update.  There was some discussion about adding/removing attributes.  Now that the specification is done, they will be going into heads down mode.  In addition to Matt, Noah Spahn will be assisting part-time to roll out local components. (NB: Their next meeting is scheduled on September 29, 2010.)

Calendaring Interoperability Workgroup - Bruce Miller

They have not met since our last meeting.

Liaison Reports

Information Technology Board (ITB) – Jim Woods

They have not met since our last meeting.  (NB: Their next meeting is scheduled on October 29, 2010.)

Enterprise Information Systems Planning Group (EISPG) – Deborah Scott

Deborah Scott is leaving to become the CIO at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts.  Lubo is going to be the SIST Acting Director.  Discussions will occur to determine who will become the next EISPG chair.  There were a good number of respondents to the SIS conversion RFP, and they are encouraged that there should be multiple good choices.  The idea is to convert as much code as possible.  Submitting your jobs will be different.

Academic Technology Planning Group (ATPG) - Alan Moses

They have not met since our last meeting.  (NB: Their first meeting for the new school year is scheduled on October 4, 2010.)

Research CyberInfrastructure - Arlene Allen

They have not met since our last meeting.

Discussion Items

Member Announcements

Question of the day: What projects are you trying to complete before the start of the academic year?

OIST (Arlene Allen): They are moving out of North Hall - all electronics turned off and moved.  They are now sorting through hardware swag.  The printer turned off and removed.  They don't have date for contract start.

LSIT (David Bosso): He’s working on pilot drupal sites and virtual computer sites.

H&RS (Saturnino Doctor): He’s working on an inter-division project between Administrative Services and Student Affairs that would have Student Health using Kronos hosted by H&RS to keep track of their employee's time and attendance.

OIST (Doug Drury): They will be pilot testing by fall a tool to automate gift acceptance, it should be a big work saver.  An Automated reimbursement application is in pilot test that handles reimbursements for miscellaneous expenses, entertainment, memberships for employees.  There is a push for training the campus to use the travel Connexis portal.  And they are working on complete automation of Identity Management System feeds.

FIS Status: We are still talking with UCLA.  We are working on draft project plan and draft budget to be presented this Friday.  They need to ask for authority to ask UCOP for a no interest loan.  The terms of which include that we don't have to pay until 7 years after funds are actually drawn.  Cost of loan needs to be discussed on campus.  Someone asked how the new FIS would affect shadow systems.  For file transfer communication there would be little impact.  For applications with direct interaction with the FIS, e.g., GUS & Itworks in MSI.  They’ll work to help migrate that service, but how to pay for such help has not been worked out, but likely it will be a shared cost.  For those that extract from or put data to the Mainframe, they need to sit down with those departments to see if technically feasible, and then determine how to pay for it.  Most of those applications were probably paid for by recharge.  Scope of the project is central accounting, purchasing, and equipment management.

Communications Services (Ann Dundon):  She’s working on getting the printed campus directory out.  

ISBER (Randall Ehren): He was unsuccessful in trying to purchase Fastlane online grant application software from UCLA, so they are writing their own.  

ECI (Richard Kip): He thanked the group for electing him ITPG vice-chair.  He is also now the Assistant Director of ECI.  He will push projects for the college as well as manage the Computer Science department IT.  His goal is to centralize IT within the college.  The COE hardware was neglected for 10 years.  One of their projects is to replace every major server and network box in the college.  CS also needs replacements.  They’ve replaced a 10 year old backup system running that was running bacula. Next they’ll replace the mail system, and all file servers.  They are moving in the opposite direction from running their own cloud, that is, they are now scrapping their entire vmware architecture and instead putting services on their own hardware.  The problem with their previous approach was the lack of planning and resulting underpowered hardware.  He’s using CF engine to help configure boxes.

OIST (Elise Meyer): She and Ann Dundon did their UCCSC presentation on the Campus Emergency Update Blog, in addition, the blog was used during an EOC training exercise and was very well received.  We are closely watching the El Collegio road realignment project since it occurs in the area of one of our main fiber routes.  We are also working to bring up voice and data service for some West Campus buildings that will be used for the Arts Department surge.  Ann asked the group how they felt about their experience with Elluminate for UCCSC.  Alan noted that both Elluminate and Wimba have been purchased by BlackBoard, and that LSIT has evaluated both.  They found Elluminate to be the most problematic.  Screen sharing is odd.  Wimba has classroom functions.  There are 3 discrete functional uses for these tools.  Software groups try to optimize campus agreements.  In order to use Elluminate one needs to be an expert. Adobe is a nice tool but expensive.

IC (Steve Miley): GauchoSpace has undergone a  new version of moodle and upgrade.  So now he’s working to sort out problems with a lighter load.  They are working to empower the distributed trainers to be able to mark an instructor as trained, so then the instructor can start their work.

LSIT (Alan Moses): He’s looking at what Collaborate@ucsb can offer this Fall, but a lot more is planned for instructors in Winter Quarter.  He’s also working with the Library on digitizing content and Intellectual Property issues.  They’re seeing sparse pools in their recruiting efforts.  There’s a sense that furloughs, protests, and low salaries are negatively impacting recruiting.

Economics (Mike Oliva): He’s testing Office 2010.

H&RS (Ben Price): He’s putting in new core equipment, including 10 Gig and wireless.  He’s also evaluating firewalls.
OIST (Tom Putnam): See CIO report.

Math (Fuzzy Rogers): He’s working on revamping the Matlab license.

Academic Personnel (Andy Satomi): He’s working on deployment of their next generation Case Processing application, with training for all academic departments and colleges.  He’s also addressing a handful of Dell Optiplex GX620s with blown capacitors that weren't on original recall.

Physics (Glenn Schiferl)
: He’s replacing machines in labs (g620s) and putting new backbone fiber switches in the building.

OIT (Kevin Schmidt): He’s working on both the Core Router and wireless upgrades, and the associated back end systems.  The initial goal was to have core upgrades done before classes, but it looks like at most the Core Routers in PSB North, Public Safety Building and North Hall might be done by then.  With the upgraded wireless, you can join network and log into the campus VPN without also authenticating to the wireless network.  He’s also working on a replacement of the campus VPN server, and one feature being considered is having the VPN connect someone to their department network.  

Office of Research (Chris Sneathen): He’s working on converting their content management system into a Braco system which uses Drupal.  He’s also tackling a new development for doing sub-award across campus.

LSIT (Chas Thompson): He’s gearing up to start Collaborate@ucsb efforts and to support GauchoSpace.

CNSI (Paul Weakliem): He’s working on the MRI cluster, and a Polycom teleconferencing system.

MSI (Jim Woods):  He’s working on Open Scholar (drupal), which allows individual websites to be quickly provisioned for department or beyond.

Brief synopsis of the new Committee for Scientific Computing. - Paul Weakliem
 

The campus has been grant-funded to build a shared research cluster.  One goal is to make it easier for IT organizations to support their own researchers.  This should make it easier for end users.  It will use UCSBNetID for all authentication.  They will identify pockets of expertise.  You can join the group via it.ucsb.edu.  There will be an RFP.

Proposal to charge the BEG with leading the discussions on campus wireless networking.
 

This group has discussed both VOIP and wireless.  There is interest in an effort that includes Campus Wireless and Wireless Best Practices.  BEG doesn't have an opinion.  There was an earlier effort to form a campus Wireless Interest Group, but it really didn't do much.  Functional uses of wireless are wide ranging.  Who do you talk to regarding campus wireless, or what are the best practices if you are not using campus wireless, what rules should you be following?  What about non-networking wireless?  Someone should generate resource pages on it.ucsb.edu, including contact information, etc.  Information could include things like who can do site preparation.  BEG will probably come back with more questions.  One approach would be to identify the goal that there should be ubiquitous wireless, and then come back with steps to reach that.

Proposal to have the Mobile Standards Group remain an unofficial group, with close ties to the Web Standards Group.