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May 18, 2001

New desktop computers must meet standards

by Diana Pounds
All desktop computers purchased by university departments must meet minimum standards that went into effect May 1.

Several university-wide groups and committees have been working on the standards, which are intended to help faculty and staff select new computers that work well in the campus environment and can be readily maintained and serviced.

The standards specify such features as processor speeds, memory and operating systems for both PC-compatible and Mac desktops.

The new standards also specify that desktop systems be purchased through the Microcomputer Products Center or the Administrative Data Processing Center. An exceptions procedure will be in place for purchases that fall outside the standards.

Among new minimum purchasing standards for PC-compatible desktops are: Pentium III (866MHz) processor; 128 MB memory (RAM); CD or DVD media; and Win9x, NT or 2000 operating system.

Among minimum standards for Mac desktops are: G4 (450MGz) processor; 128 MB memory (RAM); CD or DVD media; and OS9.x operating system.

While there are no specifications for the Linux operating system, computers purchased to run Linux must otherwise meet the minimum purchase standards.

The standards also include specifications for wired and wireless network connections.

The minimum purchase standards will be evaluated quarterly. The standards are online at

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