Using Google Apps
- Getting Started
- Using Gmail
- Using Google Drive
- Using Google Calendar
- Using Google+
- Using Google Groups
- Using Google Sites
Partnering with Google will give University students, faculty, and staff access to a suite of state-of-the art communication and collaboration tools that will enhance their ability to work together. In addition to increased productivity opportunities, Google Apps also will allow the University to save costs in the long run by reducing the need to buy and support software, hardware, and storage to maintain our own independent email service.
The move to Google allows the University to use Google's application and data storage servers, a move that provides numerous benefits for the University and its users. Using U of M Google Apps will dramatically increase service quality (in comparison to similar services managed by the University) and enable us to simplify the support model for these core services. The University will save equipment (application and data storage servers), license fees, annual software maintenance costs, and support costs. The Google Apps initiative will save the University an estimated $2 to $3 million per year.
And that frees up time for IT staff to do more work that directly supports the academic and research mission of the University—a move that will open up room for innovation.
Faculty, staff, and students will be able to choose U of M Google Mail and Apps as an option. The long-term goal is to have all students using U of M Gmail, so at some point, all incoming students will be required to use it as their official University email account. A number of roll-out options are being considered at this time for expanding the use and availability of U of M Gmail and other apps beyond the opt-in period.
The University will use the Google Apps for Education Edition, which includes the following applications:
Other Google features may be added, based on the recommendations and applicability, at some time after the full implementation is completed. Any new features will be introduced only after complete and thorough review and testing.
Yes. Those who choose to opt-in with UM Gmail also will be able to use other Google Apps.
All current undergraduate students are eligible to sign up for an account, and a phased implementation for faculty and staff is underway. The current implementation schedule is available on the main page, as well as in the Campus Implementation of this website. You will receive an invitation by email when you are eligible to sign up for an account.
Shibboleth, a standards-based, open source software will be used to provide single sign-on access, so University users will use their Internet (X.500) ID and password to sign in through the University standard Internet login page.
In addition, you will need to use the University's central authentication process to access your University account. Log in at http://google.umn.edu or www.oit.umn.edu/google. You will not be able to access your University account via the Google personal edition interface such as www.gmail.com, www.google.com/accounts, or www.google.com/ig.
Students will not see advertising while they are active students. However, once a student leaves the University, their account will be subject to advertising like any other Gmail account. Faculty and staff accounts will not be subject to advertising.
All coordinate campuses--Crookston, Duluth, Morris, and Rochester--are included in the process and the project team is working with representatives from each campus domain.
Yes. At this point, the plan is to make Google Apps available to eligible retirees at the same time it becomes available for eligible alumni, after the initial student, faculty, and staff implementation.
U of M Google accounts will be set up and administered by University staff. The University also will provide user support through the help desk and Office of Information Technology (OIT) technical staff.
Yes. Your email address will remain the same as it is now. We are able to use our own domain names such as @umn.edu, @d.umn.edu and @morris.umn.edu. It is important to know that all University of Minnesota email still filters through the University network and is delivered from the U of M domain.
Yes. Although it may change, the working plan is to keep email addresses the same.
Gmail accounts are provided with 25GB of email storage.
Yes. The message size limit is 25MB.
The 25MB message size limit includes all attachments. Other options for sharing files within the University are NetFiles or, if you're sharing files with someone in the same collegiate unit, Active Directory. Google Apps is designed to simplify file sharing by providing links to shared content rather than including it as an attachment, in order to ensure that people will be working and collaborating on the newest version.
Your University of Minnesota Google Apps account is totally separate from your personal Google/Gmail account, so nothing about your personal Google account will change. Your private account and institutional accounts will not be merged. Remember that you will need to use the University's central authentication process to access your University account.
Google uses "labels" instead of folders to organize email. You can assign multiple labels to a message.
Yes, departmental and sponsored accounts can sign up for a Google account and use Gmail, provided the account does not use file sharing.
No. Gmail does not support sharing of mail folders.
It is Google's goal to make sure that all Google services are accessible everywhere. However, there are times when there may be service interruptions in certain countries that are beyond the control of Google and the University. This challenge exists regardless of the service provider. Of course, these interruptions don't just affect Google services, but other sites (Yahoo, Amazon, etc.), as well. Google continues to work to provide direct access to Google services in these countries.
The U of M makes available networking configurations and associated technologies such as Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection and secure shell (SSL) to help ensure ongoing access to your critical services such as Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs. Users are encouraged to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection, which may, in some cases, lessen the difficulty.
It is important to know that all University of Minnesota email still filters through the University network and is delivered from the U of M domain.
U of M Google account users will need to use Google's autoreply, forwarding and mail filters features available in Gmail. The existing central functions will no longer be available to Google users. Please note that in Gmail, you cannot forward to more than one account as is now possible with the existing University user tools.
Aliases will continue to work as they do now. We will continue to accept mail for the various domains, such as @epi.umn.edu, forwarding them on to users whether they are in Google or not. However, you should note that the "To" and "Cc" lines will show the Google domain rather than the original domain. For example, email addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org will appear as "To: email@example.com" in Gmail. Likewise, firstname.lastname@example.org will show up as email@example.com in the Gmail.
In Google Calendar, however, the primary calendar associated with a user's account will not be tied to that user's aliases. The calendar is only associated with the users original email address.
Autoreplies will be sent by Google based on mail they receive and should work for those aliases, but that process is still in the testing phase.
No. Your University of Minnesota Google Apps account is totally separate from your personal Google account, and your private account and institutional accounts will not be merged.
The calendar will still exist and the permissions for others will remain the same. The setting "make changes and manage sharing" effectively makes the second person an "owner" of the resource, as well. It would be best practice to make a department account an "owner" (i.e., "make changes and manage sharing") of the personal calendar. Otherwise, the scenario could occur where one person creates a calendar, makes a second person an owner, and then both leave the University. In that scenario, the calendar would disappear.
Yes. At this point, the plan is to make Google Apps available to eligible alumni after the initial student, faculty, and staff implementation.
Gmail's chat features and the downloadable Google Talk application are very similar in functionality. Both Gmail and the Google Talk client let you connect to the Google Talk network, which is made up of millions of people who use the Google Talk IM product, or a service that supports open server-to-server federation. Currently, Google Talk works only with Windows XP or Vista.
Google Talk offers some additional customization options, including making Gmail the default mail handler and providing notifications of incoming mail to Gmail. On its own, Gmail chat allows you to talk to people from directly within Gmail. If you're signed in to the Google Talk application in the background, Gmail will also allow you to make free voice calls from your friends' profile cards. Features that Gmail chat has but Google Talk does not offer are video chat, invisible mode, and group chat.
Yes. Google Talk will be supported, and video chat has been enabled.
We currently do not have templates for Google Sites or Forms. We have been and continue to work with U Relations with regard to branding issue solutions for both, and one of the items is to work on creating a template with U branding for use with Google Sites.
Although there is no definite time frame for completing these templates, we are aware of the need for them and are working on them. Please understand that the priority for our team is to to facilitate a smooth transition to Google Apps for everyone at the U, and our phased implementation will continue until then.
Once everyone has been transitioned and working collaboratively, we will be able to spend more time on these enhancements.
The email application, Gmail, may be used with a screen reader for users with disabilities. More information is available at the related Google Help Center. The Google Docs Help Center on accessibility is not yet available, but University staff are working with Google on this issue.
The Office of the General Counsel (OGC) reviews and approves all contracts to which the University of Minnesota is a party. If you would like to get a copy of the Google contract, contact Susan McKinney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please send any questions or comments about the U of M Google Initiative to email@example.com.