In the new cloud computing environment, you will access applications, files, data and other computing resources via the UCOP network, rather than your desktop. For example, instead of being installed on your computer, an application will reside on servers in the UCOP data center (our “private cloud”). You will use your device to access the app in the cloud but not to house it.

Instead of storing your files on your computer, you will save them to the servers (in the cloud), where you’ll be able to access them from any number of devices, including personal ones. University data will be more secure because it is stored on central servers, rather than on devices subject to loss and theft and vulnerable to viruses and malware. And because it is backed up nightly on the server, you have assurance of its availability.

To access your files and applications, some of you will use a “thin client” instead of a desktop or laptop. A thin client is a device that has no storage capacity. It simply provides the means to connect to your cloud desktop for accessing applications or files. It is used with a monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

Not every individual will get a thin client, though. With our initial cloud configuration, some job functions will require applications not yet moved to the cloud, or capabilities best provided by a powerful desktop or laptop. ITS will work with you and your department to determine the right configuration for your job.