Active Directory

VSU EMPLOYEES:
Create an AD Account to Login to Your Office and Campus Computers 

Active Directory (AD) is the system that manages logging into Valdosta State University computers. The system allows Information Technology to easily manage a number of network resources, such as shared printers and documents.  After setting up an account, faculty, staff, and students of the university will be able to:

  • Access computers located on campus
  • Access their My Documents folder from any computer owned by the university
  • Access shared documents for their classes or departments
  • Access shared printers

Common AD Questions: 


What are the benefits of Active Directory?

  • Secure Access - You have your own individual Active Directory account and network storage space, preventing unauthorized access to private information.
  • Document Synchronization - Your My Documents folder is backed up on the Active Directory server, allowing an additional possibility for file recovery should data become lost or corrupted.
  • Cached Login - Even if your computer loses connection to the Internet, you will still be able to log in to access and work on documents that are stored on the hard drive.
  • User Mobility - By logging into any computer that has been migrated to Active Directory, you are able to gain access to documents that have been synchronized to the Active Directory server.
  • Instant Account Generation - If you are a new employee, you can apply for an Active Directory account on any office computer that has been migrated to Active Directory and your account will be generated instantly.
  • Work Order Integration -Your Active Directory account is linked to the online Information Technology work order tracking system (ServiceDesk). You can directly place requests for technical assistance, review possible solutions you can implement yourself, review or update the status of your requests, and close requests that have already been resolved.

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What are the policies of Active Directory?

  1. Software Installation and RemovalBased on the method Active Directory uses to manage accounts, users are not able to install or uninstall software. Contact the VSU Solutions Center at 229-245-4357 or e-mail helpdesk@valdosta.edu to request assistance. 

  2. Password Policies - All campus computers must be protected by secure passwords. The following criteria will be enforced with Active Directory passwords:

    • User-level Passwords must be changed every one hundred eighty (180) days.
    • Passwords must be at least eight (8) characters in length.
    • Passwords must contain:
      1. At least one number
      2. At least one lower-case letter
      3. At least one upper case letter
      4. When changing passwords, you may not re-use one of your previous five (5) passwords.

  3. Individual Accounts - The university no longer uses group accounts. For example, a single account for all graduate assistants for a department. Instead, users will be eligible for their own Active Directory accounts.

  4. Employee versus Student Computers - Students will not be able to log into employee (faculty/staff) computers. This includes student assistants working for that department. Instead, they will have separate computers set up to perform their work duties.

  5. Inactivity Timeout - All computers on Active Directory will automatically lock after fifteen (15) minutes of inactivity. At this point, the computer cannot be accessed until the same user logs in with his or her Active Directory password. After a total of (30) minutes of inactivity, the user will be logged off of Active Directory altogether.

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What should I do if I do not remember my Active Directory password?

If you forget your Active Directory password, use our Self-Service Password Reset Tool to set a new password. If you encounter issues while using this tool, please contact the VSU Solutions Center at 229-245-4357 or send an e-mail to helpdesk@valdosta.edu.

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Can guests of the campus create an Active Directory account?

Only currently enrolled students and current employees are eligible for Active Directory accounts. Guests, such as visitors or alumni, can access public computers located on the second floor of Odum Library next to the Circulation Desk.

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What are the differences between logging out and locking my computer?

The following table will help explain the differences and advantages that are offered between logging out of Active Directory and when locking the account on the machine.

What it does
What it does not do
Logging Off
  • Allows the computer to clear the cache.
  • It allows the computer to reset the connection to Active Directory
  • Allows for updates to take be finished.
  • Does not save your sessions data for the next time you get onto the machine
  • Not as quick as locking the machine when logging onto and off of the machine.
Locking Computer
  • Saves the session data for next time you log onto your machine. This keeps all programs and files open that are running when you lock the machine.
  • Allows for user to be quicker to lock the machine if the client has to walk away.
  • Quicker to log in to the computer
  • Does not clear the cache on the machine.
  • Does not finish updates that need to occur on the machine.
  • Does not reset the connection to Active Directory which could lead to being locked out of the machine.

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