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Frequently Asked Questions

Please click on a topic below to display the frequently asked questions for that topic.

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General Questions

Q. What should I do if I forget my email password?

A.
Option 1 - Go to Tufts Tools and choose to reset your password. Follow these instructions.

Option 2 - Come to the Library IT Service Desk on the 5th floor of the Sackler Building. The library staff can reset it for you during our normal business hours.

Option 3 - Call the Library IT Service Desk on the 5th floor at 617-636-2947 during our normal business hours.

Q. My computer is running slowly and while surfing the internet I get a lot of pop-up advertisements. What should I do?

A. These pop-ups are caused by adware. Please see the tutorial on Viruses and Spyware for more information.

Q. My virus scan software says that it is out-of-date and I should upgrade?

A. Consider paying for an upgrade or downloading the free anti-virus program available to students (Software). To learn more about viruses, see the information on Computer Viruses.

For more information about antivirus software and protecting your computer, please see Steps to Keeping Your Computer Secure.

Q. What type of computer should I get?

A. Please see the computer recommendations.

Tufts Students are eligible for computer discounts from Dell and other vendors.

Q. Can I get software discounts through the University?

A. Vendors offer some discounts to Tufts students.

Q. From where can I borrow a laptop and what is the loan period?

A. All registered library patrons with a valid ID may borrow a laptop from the 4th Floor Library Service Desk during the normal business hours of the library.

Laptops may:

  • Be used in the Sackler building only.
  • Be checked out for 4 hours.
  • Be renewed--provided not all laptops are checked out and no one is waiting.

For more information about checking out a laptop, please see Laptop Checkout

Internet Access in the Library

Q. If I am visiting your library, can I get online with my laptop?

A. Visitors to the Hirsh Health Sciences Library can use the Guest Wireless. Instructions for setting up guest wireless can be found here.

You are also welcome to use one of our computers in the library or labs.

Q. Who is eligible for registration to get online?

A. Tufts students, faculty, staff and clinical faculty ( i.e., residents ) with a Tufts username and password can register for Tufts wireless. People without a Tufts username and visitors are able to use our public area computers or use wireless via the Tufts Guest network. We recommend individuals in the Tufts Community register to use the Tufts wireless.

Q. What about virus protection and security?

A. You are responsible for protecting your own machines against viruses and other attacks to reduce risk to your machines and harm to the other network computers. Please see "Steps to Keeping Your Computer Secure" and check our page about virus protection.

Q. Is my information safe while using wireless?

A. The library and guest wireless network is not secure and the library cannot guarantee the safety of your traffic across its wireless network. Information sent to or from your laptop can be captured by anyone else with a wireless device and appropriate software, within up to three hundred feet. We recommend that you use a firewall to help protect your computer.

Q. Why does my wireless network connection speed vary?

A. There are several possibilities including:

  • Your distance from the access point and/or obstructions that might be in the way.
  • The number of people using the connection. Since a wireless network is a shared network, if several people are using the network then users may see slower connections.

If you experience a connection problem, try moving to a different part of the library or use a nomadic connection. Wired connections are up to 10 times faster than wireless.

Q. Will I need to re-register every time I use my laptop?

A. No, once your register your laptop, it can be used on any network within Tufts University.

Q. Since Iím using my own equipment, must I still abide by the Tufts Information Stewardship Policy?

A. Yes, you must abide by Tufts Information Stewardship Policy.

Q. Can I get help with registering my device?

A. Feel free to stop by the Library IT Service Desk on Sackler 5 to get help with registering your device. If you're unsure if your device meets the requirements to get online, our staff is happy to assist in this process.

If this process requires leaving your device with our IT staff, it will be held in a secure office and will not be given back without an ID. If you provide us with your phone number we will call you when it is complete.

ExamSoft

Q. I cannot login to ExamSoft or I get an LDAP error message when I try to login. What should I do?

A.
For Students of the School of Medicine: The Medical School is the first to use Single Sign-On (SSO) for logging on to ExamSoft. Use the following format to enter your username:

tuftsmed\Your Username

For All Students: To reset your Tufts password, follow the instructions on the Tufts Username page.

Q. What should I do if my computer freezes or locks up while I'm taking the exam?

A. Do not exit the exam. (Once the exam is exited, it can no longer be opened for continuation). Follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Power off the computer.
  2. Restart the computer.
  3. The SofTest Exam Restart window will be displayed

Q. Images are not appearing on my screen while using ExamSoft. What should I do?

A. This can be caused by a display setting. The display setting must be set to 100%. The student should receive an alert before starting the exam asking them to change the settings.

Click here for an ExamSoft Contact and Solution Center article that provides instructions on how to address this issue before your next exam.

Q. What is Guided Access and why do I need it on my iPad to use SofTest-M?

A. Guided Access is a setting that must be enabled on the iPad before students can take a secure exam on SoftTest-M. See the ExamSoft Contact and Solution Center for more information.

Q. How do I activate, use, or exit Guided Access mode on my iPad?

A. See this ExamSoft Contact and Solution Center article for instructions on using, activating, and deactivating Guided Access.

Q. Can SofTest be used in a Virtual Operating System?

A. No. It is not possible to take Secure Exams through a virtual operating system such as Microsoft's Virtual Machine, Parallels or VMware, Vmware Fusion or any other virtual operating system environment. Although SofTest can be installed and registered on virtual platforms, it will only be enabled for non-secure Practice Exams.

Computer Recommendations

Q. Do I need to purchase a new computer?

A. If you are happy with the speed of your current computer and it is able to run the current software, then you could wait until you are ready.

Q. Should I buy a laptop or a desktop computer?

A. In choosing between a desktop and a laptop, you should evaluate your living arrangements, working style and study habits to determine which would better suit your needs. Although laptops can be more expensive than a desktop with comparable specifications, most students choose a laptop for use on campus and during exams.

Q. Should I buy a Mac or Windows computer?

A. This is a very personal decision. The University does not recommend one over the other.

A. Do I need to bring a printer?

A. Black and white and color printing are available in the Hirsh Health Sciences Library.

Q. Are there computing labs on campus that I can use?

A. Yes, there are computer labs in the Hirsh Health Sciences Library.

Q. Are there discounts for Tufts University students, faculty, and staff?

A. Although back-to-school bargain packages may be available online or at large computer stores, you should check for educational discounts or academic pricing on all hardware and software before making your purchase. Tufts offers hardware discounts and software discounts.

Q. What Computer Accessories are recommended?

A. Recommended accessories include a power surge protector and a portable backup device (such as a USB flash drive or external hard drive). You should keep all system manuals and disks in case of technical problems. For laptop users, we recommend bringing a laptop security cable. You might also consider investing in a full-size keyboard, mouse, and monitor so that you can ergonomically use your laptop at home.

Q. Is there a Wireless Network?

A. Currently, there is wireless in the Hirsh Health Sciences Library. Find out more about getting online at the Hirsh Health Sciences Library here.

Q. Do I need antivirus software?

A. We strongly recommend purchasing antivirus software for your personal computer. For more information about antivirus software and protecting your computer, please see Steps to Keeping Your Computer Secure. Note: Only one antivirus should be installed on your computer--more is not better in this case.

Peer-to-Peer (P2P) File Sharing and Copyright Infringement

Q. What will happen if I am caught sharing copyrighted materials while connected to the internet through Tufts?

A. The sharing of copyrighted materials violates the Tufts University Policy on Fair Use of Copyrighted Materials. Tufts University takes file sharing very seriously and violators will be disciplined according to the policies of the school they are attending.

Q. What is Peer-to-Peer (P2P) File Sharing?

A. Peer-to-Peer file sharing programs can give people access to a lot of information. Programs such as Limewire, DC++, Bittorrent allow users to connect and share music, software, movies, tv shows.

If you have a program on your computer that allows you to download copyrighted materials free of charge, it probably is a Peer-to-Peer file sharing program. You should not use this at Tufts.

If you have questions regarding Peer-to-Peer file sharing or would like us to remove or disable a Peer-to-Peer file sharing program, please stop by the Library IT Service Desk.

Q. What options exist for obtaining music/movies/TV shows legally over the Internet?

A. Please see Legal Media Downloads for a list of suggestions.

Q. What is the risk of using Peer-to-Peer (P2P) File Sharing?

A. When using Peer-to-Peer file sharing programs such as Limewire, you may unknowingly allow others to download copyrighted materials from your computer. This is illegal and violates the Tufts University Policy on Fair Use of Copyrighted Materials. Violators will be disciplined according to the policies of the school they are attending.

In addition, when you download files from an unknown source, you may download a virus or spyware onto your computer.

Q. What are Digital Copyright Laws?

A. In 1998 the U.S. Congress passed into law the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). This act is meant to protect the rights of owners of digital media. It is used by corporations to protect their movies, music and software from piracy and unlawful duplication.

The DMCA is used in prosecution of persons violating the copyrights of digital media, including music, movies, images and online books or manuals. Copyright holders regularly police common Peer-to-Peer filesharing networks in pursuit of alleged copyright violators. When violators are located the copyright holder informs the university with a "notice to cease and desist" it is then the University's responsibility to remove the offending user from the network. The copyright holder may pursue legal action against individuals who violate copyright laws.

Tufts University takes copyright violations very seriously. Each school has different policies on discipline for violations. Please check with your Student Services Office for more details.

For more information about the DMCA, please see the Tufts Technology Services' website.