Reply To: Department Specific SLA


Fundamentally, designating a service as “enterprise” forbids academic units from doing what they want in an area, even if the unit would meets the University’s legal obligations. For example, many of my colleagues are fundamentally opposed to using a Microsoft-provided email server for a variety of reasons (distrust of Microsoft based on a long history of research in teh area being not the least of these.) Telling faculty that they must use the Microsoft-provided server and cannot setup and maintain a departmental server, even if it meets UNM’s legal obligations is very problematic.¬†That strikes at the very foundation of academic freedom.¬†

The problems are even more severe for those of who research and teach in computing, where designating a service as “enterprise” specifically impedes our ability to research and teach as we feel is most appropriate. “Enterprise services” explicitly limit our ability to do so. As just two examples, students creating simple SMTP (mail) servers makes a very good introductory computer neworking assignment, because of the simplicity of the protocol. Likewise, SMTP servers make very good honeypots for computer security teaching and research; the “enterprise” designation significantly impacts our academic freedom to conduct research in this way.