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Recommended Operating Systems


You should check the list of recommended operating systems before purchasing a computer - and in particular, the policy regarding new versions of Mac OSX/macOS for Apple computers.


Purchasing Computer Equipment


Before buying a new computer you should consider what you are going to use it for e.g. general word processing, web browsing. If this is the case you would not need a 'top end' machine. If you are doing calculations you might want a machine with a faster processor, more RAM etc.


If you have any doubts it is worth talking to the Computer Officers as they have a lot of experience with ordering computers. Below are some of the choices.


PCs


Desktops


If you only want to get a rough idea of price please contact the Computer Officers with a rough specification i.e. processor, RAM, hard disc size, monitor size. If you are unsure of your requirements, we are happy to offer advice.


Suppliers


Avantek


World of Computers


Dell


Purchasing from Dell


Dell are on the UFS Marketplace. Login to UFS, click on U.F.S. MA iProcurement Requisitioner, then on iProcurement Home Page, then click on University of Cambridge Marketplace. There should be a window labelled 'Dell Punchout' click on that. This will take you to the Dell Premier Webpage.  You will then be presented with a long list of NDNA Destops and laptops. You can select from these but please bear in mind the configurations are fixed and do NOT include a monitor. We recommend that you proceed to the Optiplex 9020 section



Select the size and base processor you require i.e.Optiplex MCS 9020 SFF i3 Proc (Small Form Factor) and click on Customise and Buy.


You can then select a different Processor if required. Choose between Windows 7 Pro and Ubuntu. Scroll down and select the amount of RAM required. The default is 4Gb but a minium of 8Gb is recommended and if you have the budget we would install 16Gb.



Scroll further down and select the monitor option you require. Further down you can select a different Video card. The default is to use the onboard graphics card which is suitable for most purposes.



Scroll to bottom and select Continue.


On the next page you can either stay with the 3 year warrenty or extend to 5 Years.



Select Continue, then click Add to Basket. Then Click on Save as E-Quote. Fill in the Contact Information but not the Authorised Buyer section. Press Continue. You should receive an e-mail confirming the Quote.


You should now be able to save the E-Quote and process the order on UFS as a non-catalogue request.


Laptops


As with buying a Desktop computer, you should consider carefully what you are going to use the laptop for. We strongly recommend trying out laptops by visiting a local store if possible. Some factors that you might like to consider are


  • weight
  • screen size (can you read it?)
  • keyboard size (can your fingers use it?)
  • connection ports  (how many USB ports do you need?)
  • battery life (maybe you need a 2nd battery?)
  • CPU speed (you might want the slowest for best battery life, or the fastest for more computing power)

Apple


Macintoshes can be bought via UFS Marketplace. If you wish to purchase a non-standard model i.e. RAM upgrade, Processor upgrade, etc please go to the HE webstore (link below) and configure the Mac you require and any extra's. Take a screenshot (use Grab in Utilities) E-mail support@ch.cam.ac.uk with a request for a Quote and attach the screenshot. When you recieve the Quote, you can then order the Mac via UFS as a non-catalogue request. Altenatively you can visit M18 where we are quite happy to discuss any requirements.


For Personnal purchases, there is now an Apple store in the Grand Arcade. The prices displayed in the Apple Store are their retail prices, and do not give Educational or HE discounts. They will normally sell to Educational customers at the standard education price. On production of a University card they can choose to meet the pricing of the HE contract if asked, but this is not automatic. The recommendation is to print out a proposal from the HE webstore (http://www.apple.com/uk/shop/mac/education select Eastern and the University of Cambridge) and see if the shop will then match the HE price. They will however not be able to match the 3 year extended warranty that is available from the HE webstore (however on request you can purchase the extended warranty at a considerable discount).


Printers


We strongly advise you purchase one of our recommended printers, as we have tested them with our supported operating systems, and toners for them are routinely held by the Department Stores. We currently recommend:


  • Hewlett Packard Laserjet Pro M402DN (black and white)
  • Hewlett Packard Pro 400 Color M451DN (colour)

Both are available via the Marketplace on UFS


Computer clusters


Please contact the Computer Officers to discuss your requirements.


Warranties


You should ensure that any computer you buy comes with a suitable warranty. Often a computer bought through the University will come with a 3 year return-to-base warranty.


Repairs


The Computer Officers are the first source of help with defective computers which are out of warranty.


Disposal


All electrical equipment, must be disposed of according to the WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) regulations. The WEEE room is at the back of the Department next door to the lift in Technical Services. Small items can be place in the wheelie bins outside the room. For larger items please collect the room key from Reception and place the items in the blue trolleys provided (please stack multiple iems carefully). If you have several items please feel free to borrow a trolley but please make sure it is returned to the WEEE room. Please note, it is fine to put coffee percolators, etc in the WEEE waste but the pots etc are not WEEE waste.

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