First-Year, Exchange, Transfer & Current Student Techlist

Just for First-Years and Transfers

✓ Reset initial password for official Macalester College account

A status update is sent to your personal email with instructions on how to retrieve your official Macalester account details. Checkout the password requirements and how to change or reset a forgotten password.

✓ Activate email account

Macalester uses Google’s G Suite for Education, giving our community unlimited storage and reliable service with Gmail, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Calendar and more! You will be prompted to accept Google’s Terms of Service the first time you sign into Gmail. 

  1. Go to If the Google Sign in page does not appear, click the Sign in link on the top right. 
  2. In the Email or phone field, enter your Macalester email address: Click Next.
  3. Enter your password. Click Next.


✓ Know how to get help

In response to COVID-19, the best way to ask for assistance is to email the ITS Help Desk at Search for answers, chat or email us for tech help. During normal academic semesters, visit the ITS Help Desk Express in Dewitt Wallace Library and the ITS Help Desk in 314 Humanities Building for in-person assistance. | search tech FAQ 

✓ Check your email regularly

All official college communications are sent to your official email address. Faculty, Registrar, Dean of Students, and ITS are just a few of the departments on campus that send vital information to your inbox. Sign in with your email address at

✓ Learn more about G Suite apps

Even the most savvy Gmail user can learn a few time-saving tricks by following the G Sutie checklist for new users.

Get your technology ready

✓ Review technology packing list

Do bring
  • Laptop and charger. Laptops are strongly recommended for all students. ITS supports both Windows and Mac. Review the minimum recommended computer specifications. 
  • Mobile phone and charger.
  • Earbuds or headphones
  • External hard drive
Don’t bring
  • Wireless printer
  • Wireless router
  • Ethernet cable, pick one up in the ITS Help Desk instead
  • Other networking devices. ITS will block devices that cause problems for others.

✓ Download software for class

Course-specific software is available for download at no cost or can be accessed in campus computer labs. Microsoft Office is available to students at no cost as part of our Microsoft volume licensing agreement.  software download | Microsoft Office for Windows (gdoc) | Microsoft Office for macOS (gdoc)

✓ Set up your Macalester Zoom account and sign in with SSO

Make sure you are signing in to Macalester’s Zoom service so you can take advantage of full features of this video conferencing tool. Checkout the Zoom setup guide (gdoc) and find out how to create a Zoom account that links with single sign-on (SSO) and your Macalester account.

Keep your data secure

✓ Make a plan to back up your data and stick to it

Question: When would be a good time for your hard drive to fail and to lose all of your classwork? Answer: Never. Reduce your chances of losing valuable data by backing it up. backup solutions | Google Drive Backup & Sync

✓ Use a password manager

Set up a password manager account with a personal email account to keep all your passwords in one place making it easier to remember and change your password on a regular basis. There are many free password management tools to choose from. Google these suggestions to learn more: LastPass, Dashlane, RoboForm, KeePass, and Sticky Password.

✓ Set up your VPN and Duo Mobile account (optional)

Need a secure connection to Macalester’s network from off campus for coursework and research? Use GlobalProtect VPN software along with Duo Mobile—a multifactor authentication tool—to securely connect your laptop, smartphone or tablet to our network when you are not on campus. VPN & Duo Mobile setup guide macOS (gdoc)VPN & Duo Mobile setup guide Windows (gdoc)

✓ Start serial number tracking sheet

Get it logged. Get it back. Should your laptop or tablet be lost or stolen would you be able to quickly come up with its serial number? Now you can. Keep track of your stuff by recording the serial number and description in a Google Spreadsheet. serial number tracker template (gsheet)  

Macalester WiFi, eduroam & Gadgets

✓ Set up your laptop, smartphone or tablet to use wifi

You don’t have to be on campus to use eduroam’s configuration assistant tool to install and enable the service before arriving at Macalester. Once on campus, just select eduroam from the list of available wireless networks.  Get connected to eduroam. 

✓ Register gaming device or smart TV for network use

If you are planning on bringing a gaming device or smart TV to campus, its MAC address must be registered before connecting to the network. Once here, connect your device in the Residence Halls with an ethernet cable or on the Macalester Gadgets wireless network. Get connected to Macalester Gadgets.

Computer labs, printing, and technology checkout

✓ Visit computer labs 

Macalester has many computer labs available to access specialized software, more powerful computers, and printing, including some that are open 24 hours, 7 days a week. As the response to COVID-19 changes, access to public and departmental computer labs may be limited this fall. Take a look at the list of public and departmental computer labs. 

✓ Print from your own laptop, pick up at print release station

Print from your own computer while on campus. Maximum file size is 30 MB, file type is restricted to PDF and MS Office document formats only. During the normal academic semester, printing is available at most computer labs. | webprint how-to (gdoc)  

✓ Checkout tech equipment from the Digital Resource Center

Students can checkout technology equipment at no cost from the Digital Resource Center. Book and browse equipment via ITS TechCheckout. You can also read more about available resources on the equipment checkout page. As the response to COVID-19 changes, access to checkout equipment may be limited this fall.

Streaming TV, movies & music

✓ Stream live TV legally

Stream live TV from on campus and thousands of Xfinity On Demand shows and movies directly to your laptop, desktop and mobile devices. Additionally, you can use your Macalester credentials to log into over 90 TV Everywhere apps when off-campus. 

✓ Find out how sharing music and movies could get internet connection turned off

Find out what it means to be a responsible user of technology services. Locate legal resources for online movies, television shows, and music. When students violate copyright laws, owners take action.  Information Technology Responsible Use  |  Filesharing  |  Digital Copyright Violations