Returning to Campus with a New Computer?

Based on recent security incidents, computers without the latest security patches can become infected by a virus within a few minutes after connecting to the Internet. New computers are unlikely to have the most recent patches, so if you return to campus after the holidays with a new computer, it is strongly recommended that you install patches and updates before connecting to the Internet or the campus network.

There are several options for obtaining security patches before connecting to the Internet:

  • Use another (patched) computer to access the vendor site (e.g., and download the critical patches to a CD-ROM disk. You can then use this disk to apply the necessary patches to your new computer.
  • Students can bring a blank recordable CD-ROM disk to the New Media Lab, located in 1154 Meyer Hall, and use the CD-ROM duplication hardware to create a patch disk.
  • Faculty and staff members may consult with their department's Technology Support Coordinator (TSC). To find out who your department's TSC is, visit

Securing your new computer before connecting to the Internet could protect you from infection-related problems, data loss and the hassle of restoring your computer after an infection. Additional information about securing your computer is available on the Computer and Network Security Web site (