Operating System Support

Note: Technology Services at FAA is in the process of transitioning our Knowledge Articles to Answers, the campus-wide Knowledge Resource. The contents of the article below can now be found on Answers here.

Purpose

To explain the timing of support available for all major operating systems version releases within the College of Fine and Applied Arts.

Background

When new operating system versions are released, the manufacturer often times makes many "under the hood" changes that make it incompatible with some existing university and departmental systems. In addition, Technology Services at FAA staff need time to evaluate and learn new operating systems to better support college users. Additionally, University policy requires that all computer systems run a vendor supported or actively supported operating system, which must be kept current with all updates. 

Leading up to the release of a major operating system version, Technology Services at FAA works to evaluate each major operating system version to determine incompatibilities with other required software or campus systems. Technology Services at FAA does this by subscribing to beta, or seed, versions of the software and testing as it is being developed. Once released, Technology Services at FAA works during the first 3 months to finalize and test each major operating system version.

Support

Technology Services at FAA strongly recommends against upgrading or running any new major operating system version until it has been tested and confirmed to work with University systems. Please create a help request if you would like to discuss operating system-related changes on your computer.

For machines that are upgraded to or came issued with a new major release, Technology Services at FAA will do its best to address problems that arise, but there may be issues for which there is no solution at present. Technology Services at FAA may recommend reverting to an older operating system to resolve problem until there is more time to investigate the issue or update other dependent systems.

Working with lab managers, Technology Services at FAA will determine the feasibility of supporting the operating system within an agreed upon timeline in each of the labs. Currently, lab machines are refreshed during the summer semester and changes to lab systems are minimized during the academic year in order to avoid disrupting classes.

Timetable

  • Operating Systems Currently Supported by Technology Services at FAA:
    • Mac OS X 10.9
    • Mac OS X 10.10
    • Mac OS X 10.11
    • Windows 7 
    • Windows 8.1
    • Windows 10
  • Operating Systems Under Evaluation by Technology Services at FAA and expected date of support:
    • Windows 10 - At this stage we are offering Windows 10 to supported staff and faculty upon request. Going forward, we expect to discontinue support for Windows 8.1 in favor of Windows 10, and will continue supporting Windows 7. Due to the timing of release, Windows 10 will not be installed in any computer lab during fall 2015.
  • Operating Systems that are considered legacy by Technology Services at FAA or expected to become legacy on a certain date:
    • Mac OS 10.9 - (estimated Fall 2016 / Winter 2017)
    • Mac OS 10.8 - 8/13/2015
    • Mac OS 10.7 - 10/16/2014
    • Mac OS 10.6 - 1/23/2014
    • Windows Vista - 4/11/2017 
    • Windows XP - 4/8/2014

 

Campus Stance on Operating Systems Support and Expected End of Support Dates

 

Date Written: November 1, 2013

Date of Last Review: July 9, 2015

Date of Next Review: September 2015