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Department Heads and Administrative Assistants,

We have three important computer related upgrades occurring over the next couple of months that I would like to outline to you. We will be upgrading to Microsoft Office version 2007; migrating to Microsoft Exchange email and migrating to Exchange calendaring from Meetingmaker. These will each proceed independently.

Office 2007 is the next edition of the Microsoft office suite. It has been available for several months and our College has been receiving documents saved in the Office 2007 format already. In order to make this upgrade as efficient as possible we will upgrade all computers in the College serving administrative functions at one time. Appropriate licenses will be provided. The new Office suite works the same as before but looks a bit different. In order to ease the transition, Computing Services will present a few short training seminars before and after the upgrade. This upgrade will occur in the next few weeks. We will contact the end users with necessary information and give a one week notice.

In an effort to bring our College email and calendar solutions together and gain synergy between email and scheduling, the administrative units of the College and departments will be migrated to Microsoft Exchange services. We will use the Microsoft Outlook application to read/send email and schedule meetings.

The College currently uses CITES Express email services and our own Meetingmaker service. This will unify our email and scheduling offerings onto the CITES operated Exchange service and provide us with one desktop application to support, namely Outlook.

We will move to the new email system first, and a couple weeks later move to the new scheduling system. CITES is providing a migration tool to automatically move existing email to the Exchange servers. Before any email is moved, we will hold several demonstration sessions to give people an opportunity to see and learn how to use Outlook.

The schedule is only tentative at this point until we can work out a few technical details. Here is what I expect:
Outlook demonstrations: First and second week of January
Migrate email to Exchange: Week of January 14
Use Outlook and Meetingmaker: Through the month of January
Migrate Meetingmaker to Exchange: Week of February 4

A list of people in your department affected by this upgraded will be sent to you under separate cover for your review and input. Firm schedules will be forwarded as soon as we can.

I'd be happy to answer any questions. If you have any special concerns about how this affects your office, please let me know.

Craig Flowers
Vet Med Computing Services