Tips and Best Practices

Restart once a week

All laptops, desktops, iPads, or phones should be restarted at least once a week to allow updates, clean cache, and keep systems running at their best.

Perform system updates regularly

Whenever you are prompted to install Windows updates on PCs or software updates on your Mac devices, please run them as soon as possible. These can be run at lunchtime or before you leave for the day to allow them to complete. DO NOT turn off machines while installing updates as that can make systems unstable or unusable. There will be a reboot required once the updates complete. If ran regularly, it should not take more than a few minutes each time. Do not shut down machine while updates are running!

  • For Apple devices: Click on the Apple logo in upper left, click System Settings, click General, click Software Update
  • For Dell devices: Type "update" in the search field, click Check for updates, click Check for updates again

Note: For complete operating system releases, please wait until the first updated version comes out prior to running.

Back up machines with CrashPlan

CrashPlan is Stanford’s backup utility for storing data from a machine's hard drive. Ensure everyone has the application running on their Stanford owned machines and that it is logged in under THEIR SUNet ID. If CrashPlan is not installed, it can be downloaded and installed from here. If CrashPlan is logged in under the wrong user, submit a ticket for help changing the user.

Replace aging machines

We recommend that Stanford owned machines are replaced at least every 5 years for best performance. Current hardware warranties run out after 3 years. Order a new machine here.

Remove old devices

Anytime you receive a new computer, tablet, or phone, or are planning to surplus an old device, please visit:

  • MyDevices to disavow your old device
  • AMIE to report what devices you are using

Note: For Apple devices, make sure to disable Find My and log out of your Apple ID so the device can be reused.

Limit use of personal machines

Using personal machines for Stanford work should be very limited. Field Support is not able to work on personal devices, other than to help make the machine compliant. If personally owned devices have hardware issues, the customer will be required to take care of those repairs on their own. We recommend the departments provide Stanford owned devices to their staff/faculty, especially when accessing high risk data.

Update your location

Make sure your location is correct in StanfordYou to ensure that help tickets are routed promptly and correctly.