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Computing and Information Services

CIS News

A new tool to manage calls into the IT Service Desk launches on 11th January

We are introducing a new tool to manage calls and queries into the IT Service Desk to support improvements to how we respond to them. Whilst the way you contact us will be the same, there are some changes you need to be aware of, read on for an explanation and examples.

We are replacing the Remedy system which currently manages our calls (incidents and queries), with a system called UniDesk.

You still contact the IT Service Desk in the same way:

The differences you'll see are:

  •  The call reference number will look different:

Remedy: INC9999999999 Unidesk: IYYDDMM-9999 (e.g. I170105-1234)

  • Your call acknowledgement will contain a link to a self-service portal which will allow you to view its progress or provide further information. The options available through the portal will be expanded and shared with you as the tool is developed and enhanced throughout 2017.
  • If you use the ‘Contact us’ page on the CIS website, this will take you to the self-service portal where you can raise your call (see below).

The new system will go live on the 11th January and any calls (enquiries or incidents) raised prior to that will have been logged in the Remedy system. Replies to acknowledgements or requests for more information raised prior to this date will create a call in UniDesk and any subsequent emails will include the differences referred to above.

There is a dedicated webpage with instructions and screen shots illustrating the new self-service options, please visit 

(6 Jan 2017)

Update to computers in open access areas

The Managed Desktop on student and teaching computers is based on Windows 10. Next week (w/c 9 January) we’ll be upgrading the version of Windows 10 that we use in open access areas only, to the latest release from Microsoft.

If you use the Managed Desktop, read on to find out more about some small differences you'll notice.

The most recent update (known as version 1607 or the Anniversary Update) provides some performance enhancements including faster logon times, and we believe it’s the best version to use for our desktop environment. Windows 10 also brings a commitment to upgrade more regularly than we used to with Windows 7, so it’s important we ensure we keep the operating system up-to-date so that it is fully supported by Microsoft.

We’re upgrading open access areas first rather than rolling out to teaching rooms and lecture theatres at the same time so that we can double-check the upgrade works as we expect, minimising any risk of disruption to teaching.

This does mean we’ll be running two versions of Windows 10 and you’ll notice some very slight differences between the two versions:

- Start menu

  • The Start menu will look slightly different in the new version. Instead of clicking on the Start button and then ‘all apps’, you’ll see the available applications as soon as you select the Start menu. Remember – you should be using the App Hub to launch academic applications, rather than the Start menu.

- Logging off

  • The way you log off has changed in the new version. Instead of opening the Start menu then selecting your name and ‘sign out’, you should open the Start menu then select the small Durham University crest from the left-hand side, then ‘log off’.

Visit our web page here to see screenshots of these small changes and to find out more, including a list of which rooms we’re updating.

(5 Jan 2017)