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CLASSE Laptop User's Guide


Quick Tips

To connect to a CLASSE network:

Please leave your laptop connected to LNSProtected or connected to our VPN every Monday night, if possible.


Networking

You must be connected to our VPN or a CLASSE network in order to:

Note that the RedRover and eduroam wireless networks are NOT CLASSE networks.

Wired connection (i.e. when docked)

Please connect to the wired LNSProtected network whenever possible. To do so, plug in a LNSProtected ethernet cable or use a docking station. If your office does not have an LNSProtected network socket, please submit a CLASSE-IT ServiceRequest.

Windows will default to a wireless connection if it is available. So, please disconnect from the VPN before connecting to the LNSProtected wired network. For detailed instructions, see SwitchingFromWirelessToWiredLNSProtected.

Wireless connection (i.e. when undocked)

Wireless network access on campus is provided by Cornell University (not CLASSE). Please connect to the eduroam or RedRover networks: https://wiki.classe.cornell.edu/Computing/CLASSENewUsersGuide2014#RedRoverEduroam

From any wireless network (Cornell or home), you can access restricted CLASSE services by connecting to the CLASSE virtual private network (VPN).

If you're connected via VPN and wireless, and trying to use WinAPP (e.g., for Kronos) or accessing samba for files, performance will be sub-optimal. There may be more lag and files may copy more slowly than when connected directly to LNSProtected. If you need high performance, please use an LNSProtected wired connection.

Linux Networking and Filesystems

Change Network Settings

To switch between wire and wireless, and to connect to the CLASSE VPN, use the "Networking" icon in the upper-right corner of your screen.
linux networking.png

After clicking on that icon, you should see available network interfaces. Your wired interfaces are listed under "Ethernet Network," and any wireless interfaces will be listed under "Wi-Fi Networks." Finally, you can mouse-over "VPN Connections" to enable or disable the CLASSE VPN.

Filesystems / Disks

  • Unlike CLASSE Managed Linux desktops, laptops use local home disks and do not have access to NFS File systems.
  • Your CLASSE Managed Linux laptops (or desktops) local disks are not backed up.
  • To access NetworkedFilesystems, you will need to use the samba protocol instead of NFS
    1. Connect to a CLASSE Network or connect to our VPN.
    2. Open the File Manager (double-click on a folder on your desktop)
    3. click on "samba" underneath "PLACES," or select one of the precreated CLASSE Shortcuts.
    4. Double-click on the samba share you would like to access. To correlate samba shares with NFS shares, please see https://www.classe.cornell.edu/private/computing/filesystems.html
    5. Login with your CLASSE username and password


Docking / Undocking

Windows can get confused if you dock or undock while it is not on and logged in.
  • To have the best experience undocking:
    1. Make sure to be logged in to your CLASSE account
    2. Using the dock button, click to undock
    3. Once the dock or Windows indicates you can undock, physically remove the laptop from the dock.
    4. Then continue:
      • Hibernate the laptop by closing the lid or selecting from the start menu.
      • Or change network configuration.
  • To have the best experience docking:
    1. Make sure you are logged in to your CLASSE account
    2. Physically dock the laptop
    3. Switch network from wireless to LNSProtected as above.
    • You may need to reset some screen resolutions when you have multiple monitors connected via the dock.


Maintenance and support

Because laptops are not always on a CLASSE network, additional care must be taken to keep them up to date, and remote support from CLASSE-IT requires the user to take additional steps.

Automatic weekly updates

Laptops should be left on and connected to a CLASSE network (see above) every Monday night. Software updates usually are applied Monday night or early Tuesday morning.

If a laptop is turned off or is disconnected from LNSProtected on Monday night, the updates will be applied as soon as it is reconnected to the VPN or a CLASSE network. Note that the laptop may be very sluggish while the updates are applied.

CLASSE laptops can also receive automatic updates while on the VPN. However, on Windows the updates may require your laptop to be rebooted during the process, in which case the VPN will be disconnected and it will not reconnect automatically upon reboot. This can leave your laptop in an indeterminate or non-functioning state.

Semi-annual checkups

Laptops have greater exposure than desktops to untrusted networks, and they can also get out-of-sync with our desktop configurations when they are not connected to a CLASSE network. Therefore, we recommend bringing in your laptop every 6 months for a security and configuration checkup. To schedule a checkup, please submit a ServiceRequest and allow approximately 4 hours for the work. Usually, we'll schedule a time with you to drop off and pick up the laptop from the IT Helpdesk, but alternative arrangements can be made.

Remote Support

As with CLASSE desktops, we can remotely address many laptop service requests. However, in your request, please let us know which network your laptop is connected to.
  • It is best for your laptop to be on a wired LNSProtected connection when requesting remote support.
  • If you are connected to the VPN, please hover your mouse over the VPN tray icon near the clock (you may need to click the expansion arrow to see it) and note your VPN IP address (172.20.x.x) in your ticket.
  • Let us know if you're connected to a network in some way other than LNSProtected or VPN. Remote access to your computer might still be possible.
Topic revision: r15 - 12 Nov 2021, JamesPulver
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