Printer-friendly version

Faculty Computer Lifecycle


  • Where are the current specifications for computers?
    You'll find the latest specifications on the main Hardware/Software Support page.
  • I have a new faculty member starting, will a computer be provided?
    If you are part of the current lifecycle year and you have information for the faculty at the time of the lifecycle order, yes. However if you are outside the lifecycle year for your area then other funding is needed to purchase a computer for your new faculty member. A used "trickledown" computer may be available from the CTS Helpdesk if funding is unavailable.
  • What happens to my old computer after you replace it? May I keep it?
    To date every reclaimed computer as part of the lifecycle has been redeployed in areas of need. The CTS Helpdesk keeps a list of requests for additional/new computers. You may request to keep your old computer, but areas of need are filled first.
  • Do you transfer my documents/data to my new computer? What happens to the information on the old one?
    Yes, we do attempt to transfer as much of your information as possible. Further, we hold onto your computer or its hard drive for a period of 4 to 6 months in a secure location. After that time, the old computer is erased and redeployed.
  • Do you transfer my programs to my new computer?
    Programs cannot be copied, they must be installed from the original media. If you would like us to reinstall any software, please leave it with your computer at the time of lifecycle in your area with a note indicating so.
  • I have a program/piece of hardware that no longer works with my new computer, will lifecycle buy an upgrade for it?
    No, the lifecycle has no funding at this time to purchase updated software or hardware outside the specifications provided.
  • I want more memory, hard drive space, a bigger display and some other things with my new computer. Will lifecycle buy it?
    Because lifecycle has a fixed budget a responsible set of base specifications for a desktop or notebook computer that fits within this budget and allows the purchase of the number of computers needed. Anything above this specification/cost must be funded by your department.
  • Are there any implications of getting a laptop vs. a desktop?
    Aside from a smaller screen, the largest drawback of a laptop is service. CTS can get virtually any part for a desktop computer shipped to us overnight. Almost every part for a laptop requires that it be shipped back to the vendor for service. If your laptop fails, you can expect to be without it for up to 10 business days. Further, vendors do not include saving your data as part of the warranty service. Laptop users must be very careful to maintain good backups because CTS may have no way to backup information before it is returned for service!
  • I hear the new Intel based Macs can run Windows, I want a dual-boot system!
    Please see our Windows on Intel Mac Policy for more information. Be aware that just because Macs can run Windows, they cannot "out of the box." A couple of software items must be purchased by your department totaling about $120. Please also note that while you will have "Windows", CTS configures your Mac side as your "standard" computer - e.g. email, Office, Firefox are assumed to be run on the Mac side as your primary operating system.
  • Three years ago I paid extra for a better laptop/memory/hard drive or other device. Can I get the same upgrade for "free" this time or the items moved to my new computer?
    No, the extra expense you paid for those items were specific to your lifecycle year last time. If you wish these items again you must provide the funding. Vendors do not credit us for "extra" items purchased three years ago. To use an automobile analogy, if you paid extra for heated leather seats in your old car, when shopping for a new one you do not expect the dealership to give you the same options for free again just because you purchased them once in the past. The same holds true for computers. Extras are non-transferable to a new system as technology has progressed such they won't work in a new computer e.g. extra memory purchased three years ago will not work in a modern computer. When CTS collects your old computer, you do not receive these extras back. Very likely you're getting a much better computer than your old computer, even with the extras.
  • I changed my mind now that I've received my new laptop/desktop, I want the other kind! Can I switch?
    Once we receive the total number of computers, laptop vs. desktop, Mac vs. PC, we order that exact number of units from the vendor. On rare occasions someone that has what you want might feel the same way and want to switch, in that case we can "switch" you. Ideally, careful consideration should be done on your part during our initial inquiry before the products are ordered.
  • The specs between Macs and PCs differ, one has a larger hard drive and/or RAM than the other! You're bias towards a particular platform!
    Not true. We cannot control what vendors decide their minimum specs are. We try to fairly spend the same amount of money for the base price on each computer and match configurations as closely as possible. Sometimes one or the other vendor chooses to include more RAM, a bigger hard drive, or more USB ports for the same price.
  • What warranty do these computers come with?
    Lifecycle computers come with a standard 3-year warranty which should cover hardware defects for the life of your system. The warranty does not cover: physical damage, consumable items e.g. notebook batteries, theft, or data recovery services. The cost of these items/services are the responsibility of your department to cover.


The timeline can shift for many different reasons. We've moved the Timeline that was previously listed here to the Moodle page for the lifecycle questionnaire itself. This allows for more flexibility for each year and allows us to adjust for factors both foreseen and unforeseen.

Lifecycle Years & Departments

"Year 1" 2012/2015/2018... "Year 2" 2010/2013/2016... "Year 3" 2011/2014/2017...

School of Arts & Sciences

  • Anthropology
  • Art
  • Biology
  • Dance & Drama
  • Geology
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Modern Languages
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Politics
  • Sociology

School of Arts & Sciences

  • English & Communication
  • Psychology
  • Environmental Studies

Crane School of Music

  • Music Education
  • Music Performance
  • Theory, History, & Composition

School of Arts & Sciences

  • Chemistry
  • Economic
  • Computer & Information Sciences
  • Gibson Gallery

School of Education

  • Business Administration
  • Community Health
  • Early Childhood, Childhood & General Professional Education
  • Field Experiences and Advising
  • Literacy
  • Secondary Education
  • Special Education