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Before You Arrive: A Technology Checklist for New Students

Students can use this guide (pdf, 433.73 kb) to learn more about the services offered by the Office of Information Technologies (OIT) and get started with technology before they arrive on campus. Students can also view the New Student Orientation Video.

Activate Your OIT Account

Your OIT Account gives you access to most computing resources on campus, including the student information system (SPIRE), email, wireless Internet, and free software downloads. Use the NetID and initial password sent to you via email to activate your account at:
Click Activate Your Account (right side of the page). 

Check Your University Email

Don't miss out on important information! Check your UMass Amherst Google Mail account regularly. The University uses your UMass email address for official email communications (e.g., excess check notices, enrollment updates, etc).

Pack Your Computer

  • Check OIT's recommended computer configurations for Windows and Macintosh before bringing your computer to campus or buying a new one. 
  • Get a discount on desktops, laptops, tablets, and peripherals for Windows and Macintosh through the U$ave program. 

Get Ready to Connect

  • Confirm your computer has a dual-band, WiFi-certified wireless adapter. Newer laptops and some desktops have one built-in.
  • Watch our short video to learn how to connect to the wireless network quickly and easily when you arrive on campus.
    Windows 7 | Mac OS 10.7

More on Wireless...


Get Free & Discounted Software

More on Free & Discounted Software...

Secure Your Computer

If your computer is compromised, you may be disconnected from the campus network. Be sure to:

  • Update your computer's software and operating system. Enable automatic updates to receive security patches as soon as they are available. Windows | Macintosh
  • Install free anti-virus software from the OIT Web site, then run a full scan of your computer. 

More on Safe Computing...

Uninstall Peer-to-Peer Software

Downloading copyrighted materials puts you at risk for fines, University sanctions, civil lawsuits, even criminal charges. We recommend you remove FrostWire, BitTorrent, Vuze, and similar programs from your computer. Use legal alternatives to obtain music, books, movies, or software. 

More on Copyright Infringement...

Explore SPIRE

You will use SPIRE to register for classes, view your grades, sign up for on-campus housing, and manage your University finances. Don't forget to add your cell phone number and non-UMass email address under My Personal Information

More on SPIRE... 


Last Updated: Aug. 21, 2013