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Before You Arrive: A Technology Checklist for New Students

New students: Learn more about the services offered by UMass Amherst IT and get started with technology before you arrive on campus.

Activate Your Account

Your UMass Amherst IT Account gives you access to most computing resources on campus, including the student information system (SPIRE), email, wireless Internet, and free software downloads. Use the NetID and initial password sent to you via email to activate your account at:
Click Activate Your Account (right side of the page). 

Check Your University Email

Don't miss out on important information! Check your UMass Amherst Google Mail account regularly. The university uses your UMass email address for official email communications (e.g., excess check notices, enrollment updates, etc).

Pack Your Computer

  • Check the recommended computer configurations for Windows and Macintosh before bringing your computer to campus or buying a new one. 
  • Get a discount on desktops, laptops, tablets, and peripherals for Windows and Macintosh through the U$ave program. 

Get Ready to Connect

  • Confirm your computer has a wifi-certified, dual-band wireless adapter. Newer laptops and some desktops have one built-in.
  • Run the XpressConnect wizard to set up the eduroam wireless network on your WiFi-enabled devices.
  • Wireless connectivity at UMass Amherst is provided by eduroam, an international wireless access service available in over 12,000 locations worldwide.

More on Wireless...


Get Free & Discounted Software

More on Free & Discounted Software...

Secure Your Computer

If your computer is compromised, you may be disconnected from the campus network. Be sure to:

  • Update your computer's software and operating system. Enable automatic updates to receive security patches as soon as they are available. Windows | Macintosh
  • Install free anti-virus software from our website, then run a full scan of your computer. 

Security Checklist for Personal Computers

Uninstall Peer-to-Peer Software

Downloading copyrighted materials puts you at risk for fines, university sanctions, civil lawsuits, even criminal charges. We recommend you remove FrostWire, BitTorrent, Vuze, and similar programs from your computer. Use legal alternatives to obtain music, books, movies, or software. 

More on Copyright Infringement...

Explore SPIRE

You will use SPIRE to register for classes, view your grades, sign up for on-campus housing, and manage your university finances. Don't forget to add your cell phone number and non-UMass email address under My Personal Information

More on SPIRE... 


Last Updated: May. 14, 2015