eCommunications

Getting started

When you establish your PID, you are also asked to establish your VT Google Apps for Education account. You must use a password that is different from your PID password. Manage your password from My VT’s (www.my.vt.edu) section on “Personal Info” and “Manage your accounts.” Once at the “Accounts” page, select “edit” your email account.

You may establish up to five alternate addresses or aliases. These may be personalized to your name or to a particular job role that you have. They may be changed as you desire. Mail addressed to all aliases goes to the same inbox, but you may use rules or filters to sort.

If you are an alum, former student, or former employee and now returning to the university with an established PID but no email, you can establish your VT Google Apps for Education account from My VT (www.my.vt.edu on the university homepage).

You will also want to establish your network ID. Be sure your department has made you eligible for wireless access. You will set the password in the same “accounts” portal.  Throughout the Blacksburg campus, and in locations including the Language and Culture Institute in Fairfax, the Equine Medical Center,  the Northern Virginia Center, and the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, you may use the eduroam service. Once accessed at Virginia Tech, eduroam may be used by Virginia Tech faculty and staff to connect at other universities also offering the service. Check availability on the map. Similarly, guests from those universities may use the eduroam service in the Virginia Tech locations named above.

The university phone system is a voice-over-IP system, Unified Communications, allowing many more services than “just a phone.” Your department will order the options based on your job needs for both voice and data (network) communications.

Hokies IDs are the gateway to additional eCommunications services available to faculty and staff. These include Exchange email and calendaring system, and Microsoft Office 365 services and software. ADadmin is the place to establish these additional services.

More information

Network-attached storage (NAS) is available to faculty and staff for individual and organizational use, and uses Hokies IDs. NAS provide a secure and reliable location to store files so that they are accessible from almost any computer. To set up or access accounts, search for “NAS” on www.computing.vt.edu.

VT Google Apps accounts are available to the university community through a negotiated contract that provides acceptable storage of university files and information on VT Google Apps Mail, Calendar, Docs, Sites, Contacts, and Talk. Other Google services can be used, but fall under the non-VT Google terms of service and do NOT provide protection for university information. Note that Google is not an acceptable location for information subject to export control and related regulations. Consult the Office of Export and Secure Research Compliance.

Virginia Tech Instant Messaging Service is available to faculty and staff members. The service provides a secure alternative to e-mail communication and enables two entities on the Internet to exchange messages essentially in real time. Search for “instant messaging” on www.computing.vt.edu.


Records retention and email. Information Technology at Virginia Tech arranges for email services to the university community, including backups sufficient to restore email from outages. These backups are not sufficient to constitute archives or retained records. Rather, individuals are responsible for management and retention of email. Many departments have departmental records coordinators who can be consulted in the following tasks that each of us must complete:

  • identify emails we created that may constitute an official “university record”—a documentation of official university transactions
  • retain those official records for the appropriate length of time
  • destroy those records after the appropriate retention period, following the procedures established by Records Management Services. To obtain a Certificate of Records Destruction, see lib.vt.edu/urig

University Records can assist with information on how to define a university record, and what the retention periods are. Contact University Records at 231-0224 or recmgmt@vt.edu.


For information technology professionals

LISTSERV is being replaced. Switching to Google Groups is the solution that best mirrors and extends the features of LISTSERV.

An Exchange resource account allows multiple users to send and receive email on the same account. Each individual uses her or his own password. For instructions, see Requesting, Using, and Accessing Virginia Tech Resource Accounts.

IT support professionals should be aware of the university policy on employees’ privacy procedures. As state employees, we may not reasonably expect privacy. That said, it is not appropriate for “just anyone” to review someone else’s email and electronic files. Policy 7035 establishes procedures for recovering employee email and other electronic records when the employee him/herself is not available, or is being investigated. If you are asked to retrieve email or files from another employee, familiarize yourself with this policy.

Guests who are not eligible to use the eduroam service may be served by Guest Wireless. Requests for Guest Wireless access must be approved by a sponsoring department.

For departmental staff ordering telephone and network services, see the ordering page on the Communications Network Services website.

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