FIS is currently in the process of upgrading all of our customers from Office 2013 to Office 2016.  As is the case with almost upgrades, there are some cosmetic and functional differences between the two versions as well as some new features.  The information listed below hopes to better your understanding of Office 2016, highlight some of the differences between the two versions, and describe new features.

Differences between Office 2013 & Office 2016

All Office Applications

  • Color changes.  Each application’s ribbon is now associated with the program’s icon.  For example, the PowerPoint icon is orange so the ribbon will also be orange.
  • The “Tell me” feature.  This feature displays as a light bulb at the top of each Office program.  Click the light bulb and you can type in what you are trying to do in the program you have open.  It will not only show you how to do the task but will let you accomplish it directly from there.
  • Share.  The icon is located in the top-right hand corner of any Office application.  It lets you save to a cloud location such as OneDrive and invite others to view the file or edit it.
  • Six new chart types.  New chart types are box and whisker, histogram, Pareto, sunburst, treemap, and waterfall


  • Ability to include attachments from cloud storage locations such as OneDrive.
  • Attachments can be included quicker and easier by clicking the attach file icon.  This lets you view all of the most recent documents you have accessed.


  • A previous add-in called Power Query, which can pool data to analyze from various sources, is now built directly into the application.
  • Time series forecasting functions.


  • Screen recording.
  • Sharing has been made easier thanks to side-by-side visual comparison.

These are some but not all of the differences and new features associated with Office 2016.  For more information, submit a ticket through the FIS Portal.




FIS will soon be introducing iPad Pros to the loaner equipment pool.  The iPad Pro offers more power than most PC laptops, yet is smaller and lighter, making it more convenient to use when traveling. A Logitech keyboard case is now attached which means you will no longer have to use the virtual keyboard in order to type an email or document.  An Apple pencil, providing you with the ability to write as if you were using a pen and paper, is also provided.  The pencil works in many applications.  The iPad Pro models that will be available for reservation are 10.5-inch and 9.7-inch.  The following apps have already been installed:

Firefox: Internet browser
Chrome: Internet browser
Edge: Internet browser
SharePoint:  Web-based, collaborative platform that is primarily used as document management and storage system
OneDrive: File hosting service that allows users to store files and share them publicly or with specific people
Teams: Application that lets communities, groups, or teams chat through a specific URL or invitation sent by a team administrator or owner
Skype for Business: Instant messaging client
TripIt: Application that organizes user’s travel plans in one place
Yelp: Application that enables users to search for restaurants, bars, and various entertainment offerings in the city they are currently located in while traveling
Google Maps: Mapping service that helps users better navigate their current location
Box: Cloud content management and file sharing service that lets users upload documents to its servers and invite people to view the uploaded content
Visio Viewer: Application which allows users to view Visio files from OneDrive
PowerPoint: Program used to create visual presentations
Adobe Acrobat: Program used to edit and view PDFs
DocuSign: Electronic signature and digital transaction management program
Creative Cloud: Set of applications and services from Adobe that provides subscriber’s access to software used for the following: graphic design, video editing, photography, and web development
RD Client: Application which enables users to connect to their remote (office) desktop.  Will not work unless you are connected to Pulse Secure
Pulse Secure: Program that allows users to connect to a specific network (i.e. Pitt’s) when working remotely.  Users must be connected to Pitt’s network through Pulse Secure in order to remotely reach their workstation via RD Client.
Mail: Standard email
Safari: Internet browser
OneNote: Application used to gather notes, drawings, screen captures, and audio commentary and store them in a tab-based system.
Word: Program used to create documents
Excel: Program used to create spreadsheets
VMWare Horizon: Application that provides virtual desktop capabilities Application that offers video courses taught by experts in software and business skills

If you have any questions about the iPad Pro or would like to reserve one, please contact FIS via the support portal.

Between the ctrl and Windows key on the lower left-hand corner of your laptop keyboard resides the function (Fn) key.  It is displayed as Fn on the key itself.  Some of you may think this key does nothing. The reason for this is because the Fn key works in a specific way.  It is a modifier key that is used on most laptop models to activate secondary or special functions of other keys.  The keys that work in conjunction with the Fn key will usually have a blue symbol or blue word displayed (the Dell laptop model XPS 13 9350 symbols are white).  Some of the more useful Fn key combinations for a variety of Dell modeled laptops that we use as loaners are listed below.  Keep in mind that many other keyboard models use very similar combinations, including desktop PCs.

Latitude 3340, 7370, 7480, & E7450

Fn + F1: Mute/unmute the volume
Fn + F2: Decrease the volume
Fn + F3: Increase the volume
Fn + F9: Search Windows
Fn + F11: Decrease the screen brightness
Fn + F12: Increase the screen brightness
Fn + PrtScr: Toggle WiFi on/off
Fn + M: 0
Fn + J: 1
Fn + K: 2
Fn + L: 3
Fn + U: 4
Fn + I: 5
Fn + O: 6
Fn + 7: 7
Fn + 8: 8
Fn + 9: 9
Fn + 0: *
Fn + ?/: +
Fn + right arrow: End

Latitude E7440

Fn + F10: Rewind audio and video
Fn + F11: Play/pause audio and video
Fn + F12: Fast forward audio and video
Fn + End: Print Screen; this will also bring up SnagIt if the program is installed on the computer
Fn + M: 0
Fn + J: 1
Fn + K: 2
Fn + L: 3
Fn + U: 4
Fn + I: 5
Fn + O: 6
Fn + 7: 7
Fn + 8: 8
Fn + 9: 9
Fn + 0: *
Fn + ?/: +
Fn + up arrow: Increase screen brightness
Fn + down arrow: Decrease screen brightness

XPS 13 9350

Fn + F1: Mute/unmute the volume
Fn + F2: Decrease the volume
Fn + F3: Increase the volume
Fn + F4: Rewind audio and video
Fn + F5: Play/pause audio and video
Fn + F6: Fast forward audio and video
Fn + F9: Windows search
Fn + F11: Decrease screen brightness
Fn + F12: Increase screen brightness
Fn + PrtScr: Toggle WiFi On/Off

Microsoft has recently announced new advanced security features available to Office 365 subscribers.  Since the University of Pittsburgh migrated to Office 365, these new protection capabilities are available to you.

The new security features offered are:

  • File recovery for OneDrive
  • Outlook prevent forwarding
  • Email encryption

File Recovery for OneDrive

This feature allows you to restore your entire OneDrive to a previous version within the last 30 days.  This can be very helpful when a file or multiple files are accidentally deleted,  become corrupt, or some other disastrous issue.  Keep in mind the file restore will only work for files that were stored on your OneDrive.  If the file was stored somewhere else, this feature will not work.

To use file restore:

  1. Go to
  2. Login with your University email address and password (may not be required if you are already logged into Office 365).
  3. Click the OneDrive icon.
  4. Click the Settings icon in the top right-hand corner.
  5. Click OneDrive – Restore your OneDrive.
  6. Select a date from the dropdown menu and click Restore.

Outlook Prevent Forwarding

This feature allows you to restrict your email recipients from forwarding or copying your emails.  Prevent forwarding should be used when an email you send contains sensitive information.

To send an email with the prevent forwarding feature:

  1. Open Outlook and compose a new email.
  2. Go to the Options tab and click the dropdown arrow under Permission.
  3. Select Do Not Forward.
  4. Send the email.

Email Encryption

This feature offers an added layer of protection to sent emails.  Some email providers don’t encrypt their connection, which means your communication could be susceptible to being intercepted and read.  If you use the email encryption feature offered by Office 365, the email you send will remain encrypted over a secure connection.  This should be used when sending an email to an external user.

To send an email with the email encryption feature:

  1. Open Outlook and compose a new email.
  2. Go to the Options tab and click the dropdown arrow under Permission.
  3. Select either University of Pittsburgh – Confidential or University of Pittsburgh – Confidential View Only.
    NOTE: Selecting University of Pittsburgh – Confidential will allow recipients to modify the content but not copy or print it.  Selecting University of Pittsburgh – Confidential View Only will not allow recipients to modify the content.
  4. Send the email.

For more information on all of these features and more, please visit Office 365 new capabilities.

When you are scrolling your Facebook feed or taking a Buzzfeed quiz online, do you answer historical questions? Questions about your childhood home, your family dog, or the first car you drove can expose you to cyber criminals. These seemingly harmless games can lead to Facebook or quizzes online can help the company store and potentially sell your data. That is not to mention the other people that are seeing your answers online.

You may think to yourself, who care if they knew my first dog was a Boxer named Luna. Well, if you ever used that as a security question to reset your password, you may be more concerned. These data-harvesting schemes have become more and more prevalent and give identity thieves and scammers easier ways to access your online accounts.

There are many examples of this but, lets take a look at a few from

San Benito Tire Pros created a post that says, “What car did you learn to drive stick shift on?” This seems like a harmless answer, but by answering this question you could be giving them the answer to “What was the make and model of your first car?” This questions is one of the most commonly used by banks and other companies to verify customers before they reset their password. 

Another from Good Old Days asks “What was your first pet, and what was it’s name?” This one is a little more obvious as it directly asks the question that you will frequently see as your security questions from companies online.

This can also happen when Facebook pages post quizzes or articles but pose questions as their caption. Texas asked “What was your high school mascot?” with a link to the most unusual texas high school mascots.

Protect yourself online and don’t share your historical data or make sure you answers to security questions are fictional. However, then you have to remember what you wrote.

As part of moving to the digital workplace, FIS has invested in desktop virtualization.  Virtualization of our workplace assists with increased productivity, agility, and responsiveness.  It also extends the life cycle of the desktop and provides the flexibility to adjust resources to each desktop on demand.

Introducing FIS Go: FIS has recently completed upgrading our virtual desktop infrastructure powered by VMWare Horizon View.  This upgrade increases capacity, optimizes performance, and improves reliability for all customers who use a virtual computer.  FIS Go also helps to enable business continuity by minimizing downtime and improving accessibility.

The FIS Go Web Interface: All FIS customers who utilize a virtual desktop with FIS Go now can access their desktop at home.  FIS Go is our Desktop from Anywhere solution.  It’s a secure portal that allows you to log into FIS Go from any web browser with an internet connection, both on or off campus, with no additional software required. This means you can get to your desktop and other resources just as if you were in the office.

  • If you’re working from home, use FIS Go web interface to connect to your work desktop from your home computer.
  • If you are using a conference room computer and need to quickly access your files, you can use the FIS Go website.
  • If the power goes out in your office, you can relocate and continue to work with all necessary access.

To connect, simply go to and log in with your Pitt user credentials.


Officially kicking off in September 2017, Technical Services has been working to complete the migration of our FIS active directory to the University-wide active directory. We are happy to announce this migration has been successfully completed on time! This has been a monumental undertaking, and we would like to thank you all for your cooperation and patience during this time.

  • Joining the centralized active directory allows for better-integrated security and use of a single sign-on (Fewer passwords to remember!)
  • Increased integration with the University community will streamline implementations and collaboration with other University departments, schools, and units
  • 48 business services located on over 300 servers were migrated, and many were improved during the transition to include upgraded hardware and software

Thank you for your support!

What is Haptic Technology? 

Haptic technology is the technology of adding the sensation of touch and feeling to computers. When virtual objects are touched, the seem real and tangible. Haptic senses links to the brain’s sensing position and movement of the body by means of sensory nerves within the muscles and joint. For example, when you touch an app on your smart phone, although the app is not there your touch where you see the app causes it to vibrate.

Uses of Haptic Technology

Arts and design: Haptic technology is used in virtual arts for to create virtual instruments, create real-time sound, or give touch feedback relating to the “surface” they are sculpting.

Virtual Reality: Most commonly virtual reality is used to create a 3D model and design that are intended to give customers a real-world experience of games they may play. Companies are currently working to make full-body or torso haptic vests for use in immersive virtual reality so that explosions or bullet impacts can be felt.

Future of Haptic Technology

Medicine: Haptic interfaces for medicine can used to help in minimally invasive procedures as well as perform remote surgeries. It is also used to translate the sense of touch into an image. This is useful when looking for trigger points in muscles.

Robots: There are robotics being created to use the sense of touch, pressure, and position. Haptic technology is used to reproduce the strength, delicacy, and complexity of the human grip. It also helps to create awareness in a human environment.

Holographic interaction: The haptic feedback allows the user to interact with a hologram and received tactile responses as if the holographic object were real. This allows the hologram to adjust for each humans experience making it more real.


Full technical and functional assistance for all systems, hardware, and software supported by FIS will end at 5:00 PM on Thursday, December 21, 2017 and resume at 8:00 AM on Tuesday, January 2, 2018.  As in prior years, only emergency technical and functional support will be available during the Winter Recess and will not include such things as development work, web updates, equipment moves and installations, loaner equipment requests, application configuration, software deployments, training, or new account creations.

To receive timely service, it is important to follow the instructions below to initiate a request for service. Please do not call, leave a voice-mail message, or e-mail a FIS staff member directly to initiate a request for service. All requests will be responded to during the hours listed below according to the levels outlined in the Service Level Agreement. When requesting service, it is important to provide a telephone number where you can be reached during the support hours.

Support Hours

Date Hours of Operation
Friday, December 22 Closed
Monday, December 25 Closed
Tuesday, December 26 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Wednesday, December 27 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Thursday, December 28 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Friday, December 29 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Monday, January 1 Closed
Tuesday, January 2 Resume full operations at 8AM

To initiate an FIS request for service, use the following methods:

Online Phone*
During Operating Hours
Outside Operating Hours
FIS Support Portal
Submit a ticket for all requests
FIS Emergency Support Hotline
Dial 412-624-FIS1 (3471)
FIS After Hours Critical Support Hotline
Dial (866) PITT-FIS

*Please call this hotline if the portal is unavailable or there is a critical issue that needs attention immediately.
**Please call this hotline outside of operating hours for issues that severely impact immediate productivity.

To initiate a PRISM request, use the following methods:

Online Phone
Submit a Help Ticket Dial 412-624-HELP (4357)

Happy Holidays from FIS!

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