California Educational Data Processing Association
The DataBus - Vol. 37, No. 3
April-May, 1997

Novell Technology Transfer Program Comes to CEDPA Members

Listserver: Software supports information broadcasting over the Internet.

Warren Williams, Grossmont Union High School District

Novell established a program called TTP ( Technology Transfer Program ) several years ago for various colleges and universities across the nation as a method of sharing technological questions and concerns regarding the planning, implementation and use of Novell products within the higher education environment. Over this time, the TTP has grown in membership to over 80 participating higher education institutions. This has become a particularly effective mechanism for the technical staffs at these universities to "broadcast" numerous technical questions and concerns to the other members who can then respond with comments and more importantly, answers as to how they have solved these issues in their respective environments. The TTP has been especially effective in the solution of many problems that have been of common concern to many of the other members and has lead to much faster resolutions that would have required direct involvement of Novell technical staff and has saved both time and money.

At the infrastructure of the TTP is a centrally controlled and administered NetWare 4.11 IntraNet "list server" under the watchful eyes of David Cantrell, Senior Engineer for Novell Education Department who resides in the Novell Washington D.C. office. The basic premise operates using GroupWise E-Mail and is accessed by way of the SMTP/MIME Gateway to allow access from any Internet connection from any member or directly from GroupWise. As a TTP member, you would automatically receive every message sent to the list server, and would have the opportunity to read, respond, save, delete or append any message. In addition, there are a number of Novell personnel who receive "blind copies" of all messages, including Joe Rodehaver, Novell's Western Area Manager for Education who can then monitor activity within his regional perview. During a typical day, there are 12-15 issues addressed on the TTP with anywhere from 4-5 answers for each of these issues from TTP members, normally within several hours of first appearing on the TTP list server.

Subsequent to the last CEPDA meeting in Palm Springs, Warren Williams from Grossmont Union High School District, has been negotiating with Novell to engage in piloting a Novell TTP for the State of California K-1 2 educational entities as a service offered by CEDPA to interested members who may have an interest in joining the CEDPA Novell TTP. Warren has volunteered to host the TTP List Server at his location in Grossmont and will provide the control and management of the server. He will be responsible for maintaining the addition and deletion of member access to the TTP server as well as the general administration of the server software. Novell will be closely watching the success of the CEDPA Novell TTP, as they would like to be able to "roll" this out nationwide to other states where similar organizations such as CEPDA prevail.

Both Novell and CEDPA feel that this is an outstanding opportunity for CEPDA members to have easy and effective access to a "clearing house" of technical issues that relate to Novell products and will provide a most cost effective manner in which to address those difficult problems that would normally cost the users a technical incident call from Novell. Not to mention the cost of downtime and personnel time in the resolution of problems that may have already been addressed by another CEDPA member. CEDPA would like to start this pilot Novell TTP with an anticipated start date of March 1, 1997. Any interested CEDPA member should contact Warren Williams for details on sign-up necessities.

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