Student Technology Toolkit

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Internet & Email: Getting Started

Connecting to the Internet

You need a personal computer with the Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Macintosh OS 10.4 or higher operating system and an Internet browser.

Note for Windows XP Users: If you are a Windows XP user, see the web page Users of Windows XP should upgrade by December 31st.

Network Access

The University of Rhode Island uses various authentication systems to validate and authorize network access throughout campus. When you connect to the Internet via wired or wireless from a residence hall, be prepared to provide your URI e-Campus ID and your URI email password.

Students moving into residence halls are required to install antivirus software on their computers. If students do not have an antivirus program, they may download the antivirus program offered to URI Students for free which is located on the Information Security's Antivirus web page. Installation of these URI-licensed programs will enable you to register your computer with URI Safe Connect to get Internet access in the dorms. To install this software, please follow the instructions specific to your operating system.

Please Note:
The McAfee anti-virus software should NOT be installed until you uninstall any Norton products or any other antivirus programs that might be on your computer!

Virus Protection & Security

Information Technology services requires all computers connecting to the URI Wired or Wireless networks to meet minimum security requirements.

  • Failure to maintain your computer's safety and security may result in network access suspension!

We have purchased a site license from McAfee that enables us to make antivirus software available to all members of the University community at no charge. Because the software is updated continually, be sure to download it when you're setting up your computer so that you have the latest version.

To download McAfee Virus Scan Enterprise, visit the URI Virus website.

To stay abreast of important security alerts, visit the URI Security website.

To check the current security level of your machine:

  • Make sure your Administrator and User accounts have a password.

If you think your computer is infected with a virus, spyware, or adware and you need help cleaning it up, call the Help Desk at 1-401-874-HELP for a virus clinic appointment.

e-Campus UserID & Password

Information Technology Services (ITS) provides free support for electronic mail, World Wide Web, mailing list LISTSERV, news server, Web publishing, etc., to all registered students. To access these services, you first need to register on e-Campus, URI’s electronic access to University information, and select your user ID and password - if you have not done so already; this has to be done only once:

  • Go to the the URI home page
  • Click on the e-Campus icon (located on the top right side of page)
  • Click on First Time Users Register Here (located on the left side of page) and proceed as instructed to register and select your user ID and password

For more information, go to our e-Campus page.


One business day after you select your e-Campus user ID, you can activate your e-mail account on the server.

To activate you mailbox:

  • Click on Log Into (located on middle of page)

  • Enter your User ID (e-Campus user name)

  • If you do not know the default password, please call the Help Desk at 401-874-4357.

If you cannot login to your email, call the Help Desk to troubleshoot the problem.

Computer Usage Policies

Policies and general guidelines for all users of information technology resources provided by the University of Rhode Island are included at the end of this document. Please be sure to read them! Be aware that individual departments and service organizations may also have policies specific to their services.

Campus Directory Listing

Looking for a University faculty, staff, or student's telephone number or e-mail address? Use the campus on-line directory!

  • Go to the URI home page
  • Select Directory (located at the bottom right side of page)

If you don't want your student information posted online, please read the wiki article on the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act on how to restrict access to your information.

Directory Assistance

  • To reach a University operator, dial 0.
  • To reach local information, dial 9 + 411.

Ramlink - Internet Connection

Each residence hall room has wireless access and one or two data ports for wired connection. The connection does not tie up your telephone line and both connections can be active at the same time. If you are in a triple room and need a third connection, an ethernet hub or switch should have been placed in your room prior to moving in. These devices extend the usage of one port to multiple computers and devices. If your triple room did not include a hub or switch upon moving in, please contact the Help Desk at at 874-HELP. If no data ports are working, please contact the Help Desk at 874-HELP to schedule a port technician visit.

When you turn on your computer, you will be automatically connected to the network if your computer is configured to do so. If you do not own a computer, you have access to many computer labs located around the campus for student use. The two main student labs are the Library Student Computing Facility in LL4, the basement of the URI Library, and the Memorial Union in Room 313. For a complete list of computer lab facilities, please see the Computing Facilities website.

The University supports Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Mac OSX operating systems. Other operating systems will work as long as the TCP/IP protocol using a DHCP server can be installed and it supports an Ethernet network card. A list of recommended hardware configurations is available on the Web at:

Connecting to the Network Via Ethernet Cable

To connect to the University’s wired network, you need an Ethernet network interface card (Ethernet NIC) and a 10baseT RJ-45 network patch (ethernet) cable 7 to 25 ft. long, depending on the distance from your computer to the wall plate or hub or switch.

Note: All computers purchased in the past two years have a built-in Ethernet card. Ram Computers, located in the Memorial Union, offers connecting services as well as support for most other computing needs including on-site visits. Their Web site is; the telephone number is 874-2679.

After you set up your computer, connect the RJ-45 patch cable (not your telephone cord) from the data line port on the back of your computer to one of the data line ports on the wall plate or hub or switch :

  • Ports labeled with an A or B are data line ports for plugging in your RJ-45 cable.
  • The port labeled with a phone icon is used to plug in your telephone. To finalize your connection to the network, configure the network protocol in your computer system settings as follows:
    • For Windows XP:
    1. Click the Start button, choose Settings, Control Panel, and then Network Connections.
    2. Right-mouse click on the Local Area Connection icon and choose Properties on the task bar.
    3. If you do not see Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) listed, you need to install it. Click the Install button.
    4. Double-click the Protocol icon to bring up the Select Network Protocol window. **Click on Microsoft in the Manufacturer field and double-click the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) selection. Click the OK button. Windows XP will install the TCP/IP protocol. You may be prompted for the Windows XP CD.
    5. Next, you need to set up TCP/IP. Right-click Local Area Connection and select Properties.
    6. Select Internet Protocol and then Properties. If Obtain an IP address automatically is not already selected, click on the button next to it. If Obtain a DNS address automatically is not already selected, click on the button next to it. Click OK.
    7. Click OK when the welcome message appears. Restart your computer if prompted. Launch your browser; you should be connected to the network.
    • For Windows Vista:
    1. Click the Start Button, click on control panel, click on classic view, then click on Network and Sharing, then click on Network Connections.
    2. Right-mouse click on the Local Area Connection icon and choose Properties on the task bar.
    3. If you do not see Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) listed, you need to install it. Click the Install button.
    4. Double-click the Protocol icon to bring up the Select Network Protocol window. **Click on Microsoft in the Manufacturer field and double-click the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) selection. Click the OK button. Windows Vista will install the TCP/IP protocol. You may be prompted for the Windows Vista CD.
    5. Next, you need to set up TCP/IP. Right-click Local Area Connection and select Properties.
    6. Select Internet Protocol and then Properties. If Obtain an IP address automatically is not already selected, click on the button next to it. If Obtain a DNS address automatically is not already selected, click on the button next to it. Click OK.
    7. Click OK when the welcome message appears. Restart your computer if prompted. Launch your browser; you should be connected to the network.
    • For Macintosh OS 10.4:
    1. Go to the Apple menu; open System Preferences.
    2. Click on the Network Control Panel.
    3. In the Show menu, pull down to Built-in Ethernet.
    4. In the TCP/IP tab, pull down the Configure: menu and select Using DHCP.
    5. Enter the Domain Name Servers: and
    6. Click Apply Now.
    7. Close the System Preferences window and Save if prompted.

Wireless Access

Please see Wireless Setup Instructions for the latest information on how to set up your wireless connection on the URI campus.


SafeConnect is a Network Access Control solution employed by URI’s Information Security Office to ensure that network devices meet minimum policies, including authentication, antivirus and anti-spyware solutions, and current Microsoft security patches. For any questions about or problems with Safe Connect click the SafeConnect Guide.

Other Student Services & Tools

e-Campus Student Information


For information about registration, course schedules, advising, transcripts, information release, term billing, grades, address updates, ID number changes, etc., go to the URI home page and click Log on to e-Campus.

Computer Labs

General-access computer labs are available in the URI Library LL4, the Memorial Union 313, and at various other locations on the Kingston and Providence campuses. For more information about locations, hours, hardware, and software, go to the URI IITS Computing Facilities Page.

Web Publishing

Every departmental unit, faculty, staff, and student is encouraged to publish information consistent with the mission and policies of the institution; see Web policy information at the end of this document.

Student organizations, with proper authorization, can publish Web pages that can be linked from the URI's Registered Student Organizations home page. They are responsible for creating and maintaining their own Web site information, responding to inquiries about the information, and updating that information as necessary.

Students may create an individual home page through the on-line Student Web Page Update Form. For complete information on the University’s Web guidelines and recommendations, please refer to:

If you have Web-related questions, contact the URI Webmaster at or call 874-4638.

Multimedia Services

Students from Kingston or Providence can borrow multimedia equipment for course projects from URI's Classroom Media Assistance office located in the Lower Level of the Library in the large computer lab. Please note: Some equipment is restricted to students enrolled in Film production, Art or Communication Studies courses.

Equipment availability:

A limited amount of multimedia equipment is also available on the Providence Campus.

Providence Campus Resources

For technology services at URI/Providence, go to URI/Providence Computer Labs.

Disability Services for Student Accommodations

Accommodations are adjustments or changes that allow students with a documented disability equal access to University programs. They are determined case-by-case and based directly on current disability documentation, the documented need for accommodation, and University policy. The staff in Disability Services for Students maintains confidentiality in all disclosures; the student retains the option of disclosing or not disclosing the reason for the accommodation to faculty and/or other students. URI is committed to equal opportunity and strives to make programs and facilities accessible to everyone.

A number of Adaptive Technology software solutions are available in the large computer lab on the Lower Level of the Kingston Library. These include access to:

  • Jaws
  • Read Write Gold
  • Kurzweil 3000
  • Dragon Naturally Speaking
  • Scientific Notebook
  • MathTalk

Desktop Computing Services

Help Desk

The URI Help Desk provides free, but limited, technical support to all students at URI. For example, the Help Desk will assist students with:

  • accessing URI wired and wireless networks
  • removal of malware
  • changing passwords for URI software systems (such as e-Campus, Sakai, email and electronic portfolios)
  • accessing Sakai (our URI course management software system)

For a complete list of services, please see the Help Desk Service Catalog.

Students can the Help Desk, URI-HELP (874- 4357) or walk in during normal business hours. Hours are posted on the Help Desk web page.

When calling, be prepared to respond to such questions as:

  • Type of computer you are using
  • Operating system (Windows XP, Mac OSX, etc.)
  • Name and version number of the application software
  • Exact error messages or problems/symptoms
  • What changes you made that may have caused the problem
  • Steps you have taken to attempt to resolve the problem

If your problem requires expert consultation or more than 15 minutes to resolve, it will be assigned a trouble ticket number and escalated to the appropriate specialist. You will be contacted by e-mail or telephone within 2 business days.

Ram Computers

Ram Computers in the Memorial Union provides students with affordable Higher Education pricing on computer hardware, software, and setup, and computer repair services and supplies. They also offer customer- configured “Rhody Ready” systems. More information is at their homepage.

ITS Help Desk

Computer Usage Policies

ITS Computing and Network Use

The purpose of this policy is to provide general guidelines to all users of information technology resources provided by the University of Rhode Island. The departments and units may have additional policies specific to their unique missions and operational considerations.

General Policy Statement
The computing and networking resources provided by the University of Rhode Island are to be used responsibly in an efficient, ethical and legal manner consistent with the objectives of University. Participation in the community of network and computer users requires adherence to the same ethical code of conduct as in society at large. The fact that an activity is technologically possible does not necessarily legitimize its use. All users of information technology resources must comply with all federal, Rhode Island and other applicable law, and University policies. Inappropriate activities may jeopardize a user's continued access to University's computing and networking facilities.

Computer/Network Accounts and Use
No one shall use another individual’s computer user ID unless explicitly permitted to do so by the authorized user of that ID. Due diligence should be exercised before assigning to anyone else user IDs that can access sensitive information.

Files and Programs
Information integrity must be protected on all systems. Users shall not intentionally seek information on, obtain copies of, or modify files, tapes, diskettes, passwords or any type of data belonging to other users unless specifically authorized to do so. Similarly, individuals shall not use University computing and networking resources to develop or execute programs that could harass others, deny service to other users, infiltrate computing or network systems, gather unauthorized information or damage or alter any software components.

Resource Use
All users must respect the finite capacity of URI technological resources and avoid excessive use. Personal computers, gaming consoles, printers, multi-user processor time and data networks are resources that must be shared in an equitable manner to meet the demands of the unit. If demand for computing resources exceeds capacity, priorities and limits may be established by information technology resource administrators. Users shall not use the network and computing resources to harass others, violate others’ privacy, tamper with security provisions, attempt entry to non-public hosts or perform illegal acts. Attempts to impersonate others or commit fraudulent acts such as altering the "From:" line or disguising or hiding the origin of electronic messages are prohibited. Other violations include the creation and dissemination of computer "worms" and "viruses," the sending of electronic chain mail, and the inappropriate sending of "broadcast’ messages. The unauthorized use of programs that scan networks for vulnerabilities and or alter network security are prohibited.

Proprietary Software and Copyrighted Materials
Software programs are protected by Section 117 of the 1976 Copyright Act. Software may not be used without a documented license. Users do not have the right to make and distribute copies of programs without specific permission of the copyright holder. Unauthorized copying and use of copyrighted material is specifically prohibited. This prohibition extends to using a single-licensed copy on more than one computer system or willfully exceeding the number of permitted simultaneous users on a multi-user license unless specifically permitted in the software copyright agreement. The use of copyrighted materials on the network, systems, Web pages, etc. is prohibited unless such use is covered by federal fair use guidelines or has the permission of the copyright owner.

Personal Use
Information technology resources and services are provided to employees for business use. Personal use is permitted when it does not interfere with normal business activities and when it otherwise complies with this policy. Personal use must not involve solicitation, personal financial gain, outside business activities, or political campaigning. Additional limits may be imposed upon personal use by the specific supervisor.

Security and Privacy
The University employs various measures to protect the security of information technology resources and users' accounts. However, the University's measures do not always guarantee security or privacy. Users should exercise caution in using University resources to transmit confidential data. Unauthorized access to systems and data is prohibited. Attempts to breach the security of systems and data by employees will result in disciplinary actions and possible criminal prosecution.. The University reserves the right for designated technology administrators to access users’ stored information during normal system performance monitoring and maintenance and when investigating computing abuse cases.

The University, at its discretion, may use the results in disciplinary proceedings with University personnel or law enforcement agencies. Communications made by means of University computing resources may also be subject to Rhode Island’s Public Records Statutes to the same extent as hardcopy communications.

Users who violate this policy may be denied access to University information technology resources and may be subject to other penalties and disciplinary action. Violations will normally be handled through University disciplinary procedures applicable to the user. However, the University may temporarily suspend or block access to an account, prior to the initiation or completion of such procedures, when it appears necessary to do so in order to protect the integrity, security, or functionality of University or other computing resources or to protect the University from liability. Computing privileges may be withdrawn when violations have occurred. In addition, violations are subject to judicial proceedings and criminal penalties.

Wireless Networks
Information Technology Services (ITS), has established a wireless network throughout all URI campuses. The wireless network will enable authorized users to collaborate in more comfortable and productive environments by allowing them to use their laptop computers, wireless personal digital assistants, data collection devices, etc. throughout the campus - both indoors and out - without a tethered network connection. Wireless also enables users to stay connected to network resources such as calendars, e-mail, and Web based-services while on campus but away from their office or classroom.

Wireless networks, however, do pose a security challenge and are subject to interference from other wireless devices that use the same frequency range as the network. In order to ensure the highest level of wireless network security and service to URI users, we need cooperation from all members of the URI community to minimize interference from other devices.

Background The URI wireless network uses the unlicensed FCC 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. Telecommunications transmission within these frequencies conforms to the IEEE 802.11 DSSS (Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum) and OFDM (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing) wireless LAN specifications. This technology is commonly known as 802.11a/b/g. Other wireless devices new to the marketplace and currently in development can create interference for the campus wireless network. These devices include but are not limited to, some cordless telephones, wireless video transmitters, some wireless audio speakers, Bluetooth enable devices, and similar IEEE 802.11 wireless LAN devices that have not been installed by ITS. Examples of these are wireless access points from Apple (AirPort), Dell, and Linksys. Problems can also result from individuals and departments deploying electronics across campus that use the same radio frequencies. Wireless access points that have not been installed by ITS pose the most serious threat. In addition to causing interference with institutionally-supported network access points, they can compromise network security and the confidentiality of transmitting data.

The University of Rhode Island reserves the right to restrict use of all 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz radio devices in University- owned buildings and outdoor spaces on University property. As new wireless communications technologies emerge, additional frequencies may be appended to this policy. Having the responsibility of managing frequencies in all URI locations, ITS is authorized to order any individual or entity to immediately cease operation of a wireless device that interferes with the integrity of wireless services. Therefore, if you own a device or are planning to purchase a device that may use the 2.4 or 5 GHz transmission frequencies, please contact the Help Desk at 874-HELP. We will help you determine the frequency and will not ask owners of access points that have already been deployed to turn them off until we can replace the coverage with secure, University- authorized, wireless network access. In cases where a device is being used for a specific application, we will work with you to determine how the device can be accommodated without causing interference to wireless users. Your cooperation and assistance in complying with this policy is needed and appreciated.

E-mail Abuse

To provide recipients of abusive e-mail a way to report incidents, Information Technology Services provides and monitors an e-mail abuse "hotline" in the form of the e-mail address:

This e-mail address is to be used only to report abusive e-mail that targets you specifically, poses an imminent threat to either you or your property, or can be considered harassment. We have different reporting procedures in place, depending on the nature of the abusive e-mail. For instructions, please see Report Email Abuse.

URI Web Abuse

The URI Website provides easy access to information and instructional resources on the Internet and fosters collegiality, communication, and informed decision-making among faculty, staff, and students in support of learning, teaching, research, scholarship, and administration at the institution. For detailed information about our Website and Web policies, please read the URI web policy For information on other ITS policies, search our online list of policies.