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Tech tips for students

By ThuWinBlogger 18 Aug 2019

Hey.  I'm sure going to University for the first time is both exciting and scary.  Here are some tech tips for you.

Get your own router

Unless you like random people blasting music on your Google Home or Amazon Echo devices, I recommend getting your own router. Depending on your budget, a cheapo router from Amazon could do the deed but if you plan on holding on your router for longer than 3 years, maybe it would be worth investing in a good brand name router. Look at reviews to decide which router is best for you.

Our rooms at Swansea University Bay Campus have an ethernet to plug in a router but this can vary depending on the accommodation you are moving in to.

Also, a router allows you to form a local area network in your room so that you can connect network devices like printers, Chromecasts, etc.

Getting some oomph from library computers 

(specifically for Swansea Students but your mileage may vary)

The computers at Swansea University have a hidden "C:" drive that is not normally seen. All files you save are stored in a network drive located at Singleton Campus. So running large simulations or CAD software from it can be slow and laggy. Therefore, I would save your files on the local C: drive and copy it off to a USB thumb drive or external hard drive once the simulation is done

Also, by default, you get around 2 GB of space allotted but you can ask nicely to have it expanded to 4 GB. Just email "engineeringit@swansea.ac.uk."

Other Universities may have a similar configuration set up.

Match the software version on the library computer 

Most engineering software is not backward compatible. That means that files made with a newer version won't run on older versions. Software with known backward incompatibility:

  • Solidworks
    For example, files made with version 2018 won't run on version 2017.
  • Ansys
    For example, files made with version 19.2 won't run on version 18.2.

Therefore, always check the version installed on your university computers before downloading and installing it on your own PC. There's nothing worse than having to re-do the work because the file you send to your groupmate won't open on their computer.

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ThuWinBlogger is a former Swansea University Aerospace Engineering. He occasionally blogs about tech at tyw7.blogspot.com. He also occasionally write fanfics, which you can find at tyw7.deviantart.com.
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