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Faculty and Staff Computer Replacement

Under the provost’s faculty computer replacement cycle, full-time faculty will receive a new computer approximately every five years. Computers for part-time faculty are the responsibility of the individual academic unit managers, but they should should also receive a new computer approximately every five years. 

Computers for college staff are the responsibility of the individual unit.

New computers will be imaged, joined to the domain, and loaded with college-provided software, including:  

  • The current operating system (Windows or Mac OS)
  • Antivirus software (Windows/Essentials/Defender or Mac/X-Protect/Clam)
  • Office productivity suite: word processor, spreadsheet, Powerpoint, etc. (MS-Office)
  • Adobe products (Creative Suite and/or Acrobat)
  • Other

When new computers are provided by the college or the unit, the old out-of-warranty computers must revert to CTS for disposal and recycle. (Computers are classified as hazardous waste due to the lead, mercury, and heavy metals they contain.)


Prior to July 2008, Dell and Apple computers purchased through Purchase College were purchased with a three-year warranty covering hardware replacement, all peripherals, and on-site service. As of June 2010, we are purchasing computers with a five-year warranty through Hewlett Packard or Dell. Since July 2008, all Dell and HP computers purchased through the college carry a five-year warranty. Apple computers will carry a three-year warranty. In accordance with the state contract with Dell and HP, the warranty is included in the price of the computer. If you are purchasing an Apple, you should add (at extra expense) the AppleCare warranty. 

Replacing Computers at the End of Their Service Warranties

When out of warranty, computers may be functioning and still serve the user’s needs, but these computers often become a liability and cost the college a great deal of money in time and labor. When hardware problems arise with out-of-warranty computers (and experience tells us they will), and they are no longer under contract to be serviced by Dell, HP, or Apple, they take an inordinate amount of time and effort to repair. Even worse, it is only a matter of time before a hard drive failure causes the loss of important data that may be next to impossible to replace. CTS technicians often are left with no choice but to put an enormous amount of time and effort to recover data and fix computers that are out of warranty and that should have been replaced. In many cases, the cost in personnel time keeping old hardware running exceeds the cost of a new computer.

When CTS is unable to recover important data, an outside agency may be required in a final attempt at recovering the lost data. The cost to the machine’s owner can be thousands of dollars. Out-of-warranty, slow computers are often brought to CTS for troubleshooting because the departments to which they belong are reluctant to spend money to purchase a new computer if they can get a little more time out of their old and obsolete computers. This contributes to inefficient use of college resources. The cost in time and labor almost always exceeds the amount of money the department saves by delaying the purchase of a new computer. Inevitably, the old computers still do not function as well as the owners hope, and a more calls are again placed to the CTS for service. 

While we understand each department’s desire to save money by holding onto a computer that is still running, we would like to make you aware that your decision to keep your old computer comes with a steep price and yields less than adequate results. CTS may decline to provide service in cases where the computer is out of warranty and we determine that providing the necessary service is inadvisable. In addition, the “old computer” problem is often compounded by cascading upgrades —we are asked to give the old computer to so-and-so, and so-and-so’s old computer goes somewhere else—multiplying the workload.

Many people who were using a computer beyond the three-year replacement cycle will suddenly find themselves with a computer that will no longer work because it does not meet the minimum specifications to run the latest Windows operating system.

It is strongly advised that all departments replace computers at the end of their service warranty. Once a new computer is delivered, it will replace the out of warranty computer which will then be brought back to CTS for disposal and recycle.

How to Order a New Computer or Replace an Old One

Please submit a work request through The CTS Work Order System for the type of computer you wish to purchase and CTS will get back to you with options.