SENS can provide guidance for purchases of computer equipment and related hardware by faculty, staff, and students, and can assist faculty and staff with such purchases. We work closely with UBMicro, our on-campus computer store, as well as vendors such as Dell, Apple, Sun, and many others.
We can also help you find the best sources for software, including the UB Tech Tools, campus license agreements, node and departmental software availability, third-party resellers, and purchasing direct from the manufacturer.
Please Note: Before purchasing a computer with Microsoft Windows Vista on it, please read our recommendations regarding such purchases. Also, we can't stress strongly enough that none of the home versions of Vista are appropriate for University use; the "Enterprise" and "Ultimate" versions are the flavors licensed by UB and supported by SENS. For more information, please consult the UBit Vista page.
Student Computer Hardware Purchases
UBit has a set of hardware recommendations designed to help you make good choices when purchasing the computer you will be using for your University work. Representatives from SENS are part of the committee that reviews these guidelines on a yearly basis, and we believe these computers are appropriate for the course work being performed by the departments we support. The computers available for personal purchase under the UB2020 Standard Configuration PCs program are a good choice, and one we recommend, but certainly not the only choice. We suggest you talk to the folks at UBMicro for recommendations about what computer will be right for you.
Please note: Due to limited resources, SENS cannot support student-owned systems.
Faculty and Staff Computer Hardware Purchases
SENS has a long history of assisting faculty and staff with purchases of computing equipment. We are happy to work with you to find the computer that best meets your needs, at the best possible prices. We can also help with quotes for grant proposals and with specifications for computing laboratory upgrades. We will also set up, install, and support your computer, whether it be based on Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Sun Solaris, or some other platform (we support a variety of operating systems).
UB2020 Standard Configuration PCs
SENS is a strong advocate of the UB2020 Standard Configuration PCs program, and is asking our community to consider purchasing them in all areas where they are appropriate. At the present time we have standard configurations available from Dell, and are working with other vendors. Please view the order form (PDF format) to see what memory, processor, hard drive, display, and other upgrade options are available. We are happy to work with the faculty and staff we support to make these systems meet their needs, or to help configure alternative systems where they are not appropriate. The Dell systems specified in this initiative are appropriate for both Microsoft Windows and Linux, by the way.
Non-Standard Dell Configurations
When ordering a Dell desktop or notebook computer, if one of the UB2020 standard configurations cannot be used, it is essential to follow the procedure detailed in this document (PDF). The procedure is necessitated by State imposed purchasing rules applicable to computer equipment available on the Office of Government Services (OGS) Dell PC Aggregated Buy List or on the OGS Dell Price List; it is not necessitated by the UB2020 partnership with Dell. Custom configured computers can still be ordered, but it is incumbent on the prospective purchaser to identify the components ONLY as specified in the attached procedure. UBMicro staff members will continue to provide consultative services, advise you on obtaining the best solution and greatest value from the selections available, and provide the final quotations required by OGS for procurement.
We have a long-standing partnership with Sun Microsystems. They offer a variety of Educational and Research programs for purchasing their products, and have very good purchasing promotions for higher ed (these change monthly so check them often). Please contact us if you are interested in purchasing or obtaining more information about their products, educational programs, and grant opportunities.
The New York State Office of General Services has a list of printer contracts that provides information on purchasing printers, such as contract information, prices, and so forth.
Please note: We cannot assist with the setup or maintenance of faculty or staff equipment purchased with personal funds for personal use, due to limited staff resources at the present time.
Student Computer Software Purchases
The first source for essential computer software is the UB Tech Tools web site. This includes software that helps secure your computer and software that will of benefit to your academic work. UBMicro is an additional source for necessary software, as are many electronics and media stores in the WNY area.
Faculty and Staff Computer Software Purchases
Software is available from a variety of sources. Here are a few that we hope will be helpful to you.
As with students, The first source for essential computer software is the UB Tech Tools web site. Many computer systems set up and installed by SENS already have most of these tools on them, so you will probably not need to download them unless your computer was not set up by us. Also, please be careful where it is recommended that software be purchased; those recommendations may be for students, and in some cases we may already have licenses for faculty and staff use.
UB and the SUNY system have campus license agreements for software from various vendors. We can work with you to obtain these products if you wish.
This section is a work-in-progress and incomplete. Information about node and departmental software availability, third-party resellers, and purchasing direct from the manufacturer is coming soon ...
University at Buffalo - State University of New York