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FAQs about Technology at Boston College

Do I need a computer at BC? 

Nearly all students bring their own laptop computer to have the flexibility to use technology wherever they want, whenever they want. There are also several computer labs located on-campus.

Do I need to have my own printer at BC?

Most students do not need their own printer because they can print at O'Neill Library and at computer labs and other libraries on campus.

Note: Students receive $15.00 in PrintBucks per semester for free (the equivalent of 500 black and white pages). A charge of 3 cents per black and white page will be added to your Eagle Bucks account for any pages printed over the $15.00 limit. Learn more about BC's student printing policy.

Can I bring a computer other than those sold at the BC Bookstore?

Yes, but it should meet BC's “minimum requirements.” All computers that access the BC network must have Boston College’s version of Anti-Virus installed. Windows computers must also have ePO, a security tool, installed. These products are provided to all enrolled students via download free of charge.

Note: Please be aware of your software needs and your computer's capacity. For example, the MacBook Air, Chromebook or other Tablets may not have the capacity to install large programs (such as Microsoft Project, Visual Basic, etc).

Also learn which computer brands Boston College is certified to repair at the on-campus Hardware Repair Service Center.

Should I buy an Apple or a Windows computer?

If you’re more comfortable with one system over another, stick with what you know – both Apple and Windows computers are supported on campus.

Note: Please be aware of your software needs and your computer's capacity. For example, the MacBook Air, Chromebook or other Tablets may not have the capacity to install large programs (such as Microsoft Project, Visual Basic, etc).

If I have questions about purchasing a computer or using my computer, what do I do?

You may call the BC Technology Help Center at (617) 552-HELP (4357), email help.center@bc.edu, or visit the Technology Help website at www.bc.edu/help. Staff at the BC Help Center are always available to help you. Feel free to call even before you arrive on campus.

If I bought a computer from the BC Bookstore, how do I get Microsoft Office and anti-virus software?

You can get this software for free from our software download site:

If something goes wrong with my computer, where do I go?

Staff at the Walk-In Help Desk are available to assist students with software issues and diagnosis of hardware problems. The Walk-In Help Desk is located in O'Neill 248. If your computer requires hardware repair, you may have it serviced at the BC Hardware Repair Service Center located in O'Neill 208. Call (617) 552-HELP (4357) for details.

What do I need to connect to the BC network on campus?

In addition to a BC username and password, ITS recommends you bring an Ethernet cable in case you have an issue with wireless connectivity.

Why do I need an Ethernet cable?

Although secure wireless access is available across most of the BC campus, ITS recommends you bring an Ethernet cable in case you have an issue with wireless connectivity.

How do I back up my work on my computer?

To make sure you don't lose important files if your computer stops working, you should back up your computer on a regular basis. You can use an online service, such as CrashPlan, DropBox, or Carbonite. You might also consider purchasing a flashdrive or external hard drive. Also remember that BC Google Drive offers students 30 GB of space (combined with BC Gmail) to store files. Learn more at: www.bc.edu/backup

What kind of warranty should I purchase?

BC strongly recommends you purchase at least a 3 year service warranty when you buy a new computer. Some computer bundles do not include a service warranty, but instead must be purchased separately. If available, we also encourage you to purchase some kind of accidental damage protection, which will cover accidental damage such as spills.

  • Service warranties typically cover everything that’s not accidentally or intentionally damaged. Spills to the keyboard or damage to the display are not typically covered by a service warranty.
  • AppleCare does NOT cover accidental damage.
  • Learn whether you are covered while using your laptop for study abroad at: www.bc.edu/techabroad
  • As is standard, batteries only have a one-year warranty.
How long are warranties on a laptop battery?

Laptop batteries only have a 1-year warranty, which is standard for all laptops sold by Apple, Dell, HP, and other major computer vendors.