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The University currently in the process of migrating to Nexus365, providide by Microsoft. For help configuring Outlook during and after you have been migrated to this service please refer to this page:


  1. Standard Applications
  2. Oxford Application Installer
  3. Adobe Licensing
  4. Browsers
  5. KeePass
  6. Office 2013

A range of applications are available for use on CONNECT workstations, some of which are detailed on this page. Please contact the Service Desk if you have any further questions. All software and hardware requests should go through IT Services Purchasing.

Standard Applications

All CONNECT workstations have the following software installed on them by default:

Adobe Flash Player JRE Runtime (1.8)
Adobe Reader Microsoft Office
Adobe Shockwave Player Microsoft Silverlight
Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client (laptops only) Nuance Power PDF Advanced
Citrix Web Client Sophos Antivirus
Foundry Sterling Fonts Symantec WDE Desktop Encryption (laptops only)
Internet Explorer 11 VLC Media Player
For a full list of applications available please see the CONNECT Windows 7 Applications page.
Please note some software offered are restricted to certain areas due to licensing and/or may incur additional licensing costs. All requests for software installation need to be submitted through the application install service request.  Please contact our Service Desk if you need further assistance.

Oxford Applications Installer

Some common free/site licensed software will be available for installation on your PC via the Oxford Applications Installer menu. These include:
Audacity CDBurnerXP
iTunes FireFox
Oxygen Adobe Digital Editions
SSH Client Tortoise SVN Client
Skype GIMP
7-Zip EndNote
Tableau Reader Google Chrome
Notepad++ PuTTY
Applications that appear in this menu can be installed at any time. For help with this system see Oxford Application Installer page.

Adobe Licensing

Adobe Creative Cloud products are licensed on an annual subscription basis through Adobe's VIP scheme. A full list of the applications this covers and the annual cost is available on the IT Service shop site. Per-user licenses will be ordered and assigned to your Oxford email address. After you have ordered a Creative Cloud application you will need to create an Adobe ID with your Oxford email address as your username in order to use the software.

Adobe Captivate 9, Lightroom, Photoshop Elements and Premier Elements are available under the Adobe CLP perpetual licensing scheme which do not need to be renewed.

Please order all software, including Adobe licenses, through our purchasing form to ensure that licenses are bought against the correct Adobe account numbers.

Web Browsers

Internet Explorer 11

This browser is fully supported on our CONNECT managed desktops. Some settings are restricted to ensure security and allow compatibility with business systems. Major version updates are managed centrally and are dependent on the support matrix for each of the business systems. Minor updates are provided to systems as part of the normal Windows update process. Bookmarks are stored on your Home Drive and will be available on any machine you use.

Chrome and Firefox

These browsers are available via the Oxford Applications Installer menu. They are both set to auto-update, you will periodically see updates applying when you start the browser and you may receive prompts to restart them to let updates apply. Bookmarks and favourites are synchronised with your Home Drive on logon and logoff and will be available on any machine you use.

Browser Usage

If you have a large number of tabs open in a browser, it will use a lot of system resources. This is especially true for Chrome as each tab is kept 'live' even when it is not being displayed by them.

If you have chosen to run browsers immediately after your computer starts (by placing these in the start-up folder) this will slow down start-up as other processes will be running in the background after you have logged in. Equally, f you have configured browsers to re-open your previous tabs each time you open them this will also increase the amount of time it takes to start them.

Add ins/Extensions

You are free to install add ins/extensions within your browser, you should not require admin rights to do this. Active X controls (for Internet Explorer) do need administrative rights to install, please contact the Service Desk if you require this and we will review any security implications before installing them.

Please be aware that updates to browsers may render certain add ins unusable or unstable. If you are experiencing problems with your browser and you have installed add ins you should try running your browser in safe mode to see if an installed add ins is causing the problem. If your browser runs correctly in safe mode you should disable the addins one by one to determine which one has caused the problem.

Internet Explorer: Click start – in the search box type “iexplore.exe –extoff” without the quotes and hit enter.

Firefox: Open Firefox as normal. Click the 'Menu' icon, click 'Help' and select 'Restart with Add-ins disabled.

Chrome: Open chrome and click the 'Menu', then 'More Tools' and 'Extensions'. Uncheck all the extensions listed and then restart the browser.


KeePass is an open source password manager. It can securely keep passwords in a single database and allow multiple people to access them via a single password or master key file. The application supports both AES and TwoFish algorithm security ciphers to encrypt passwords stored within it. It is available on all desktops via the Oxford Application Installer.

For more information and help on using it please refer to the KeePass website.

Please note that IT Services cannot provide support for the use of this application and is not responsible for loss of data or loss of access to KeePass databases.

Office Templates and Quick Parts

For Office 2013 onwards Microsoft have changed the file location for personal templates used for Office applications. If you have existing templates from an earlier version these will need to be manually moved:

  1. Click on Start > Run, paste the following path into the Open box %appdata%\Microsoft\Templates\ and click Open
  2. Within the Explorer Window that opens, copy all files and folders that are visible (from within the window press Ctrl + A to select all followed by Ctrl + C to copy them)
  3. Open up your Documents folder by clicking on the Start button , and then clicking Documents from the right-hand column
  4. Open the Custom Office Templates folder and paste the files previously copied (press Ctrl + V to paste)

After following these steps any custom templates you previously had will be available when you create a new Office document. Please contact the Service Desk if you have any further questions.


The University currently in the process of migrating to Nexus365, providide by Microsoft. For help configuring Outlook during and after you have been migrated to this service please refer to this page:

Outlook will automatically re-index all mailboxes when opened for the first time. If you have a large mailbox this will take some time. Whist this is happening searchs may not retrieve all results, however all other functionality will be available. See the CONNECT Email page for more information and help with Email and Outlook.

Please contact our Service Desk if you need further assistance.


64bit Office?

The version of Microsoft Office available across CONNECT desktops/laptops and the CONNECT Remote Desktop service is Office 2013 (32bit).

This version was deployed in 2016 for individual users to install to replace Office 2010 and following a prolonged period of testing we made this standard version for CONNECT desktops, laptops and the CONNECT Remote Desktop service. There are a large variety of applications in use on CONNECT equipment as well as numerous plugins and third party add-ins. Many of these are critical to University business and some tie into backend systems where versions of software on the desktop must be compatible.  This presents many challenges when we want to upgrade Microsoft Office as we need to consider not just the compatibility with other applications but also whether there are likely to be any impacts on bespoke systems we use. An upgrade to Office has the potential to break any number of applications so we need to carefully plan, to ensure thorough testing and where appropriate to allow for upgrades to applications and/or backend systems. Another potential issue that arises from an upgrade is that any user who still has an older version may not be able to share files or access functionality that’s created or provided in the newer version.

Why are we using a 32bit version of Office when we are running a 64bit version of the Windows Operating System?

Microsoft actually recommend using the 32bit version of Office both for Office 2013 and for Office 2016:

“We recommend the 32-bit version of Office for most users, because it’s more compatible with most other applications, especially 3rd-party add-ins.” 1

This is the principal reason for this recommendation but it’s one that holds true in our environment where we have a large number and diverse set of applications and tools in use.

As time goes by more and more applications etc. are being written to work with the 64-bit version of Office. There is however often a significant cost barrier which can both delay this process for vendors and for the University where it needs to find funding to make these upgrades once they are available.

Here are some of the technical aspects that don’t work in a 64-bit version of Office:

  • ActiveX controls library  
  • ActiveX controls and add-ins
  • Visual Basic for Applications containing Declare statements
  • Complied Access databases such as .mde, .ade and .accde
  • 32-bit MAPI applications for Outlook
  • Legacy Equation Editor in Word
  • Word Add-in Libraries (WLL)

In addition the following issues may also arise:

  • Graphics rendering performance effects
  • OLE activation problems if Office version doesn’t match that supported for applications
  • Installation of a 64-bit Office version is prevented if any of following are installed:
    • Microsoft Excel Viewer
    • Access DB engine of Access 2013
    • Compatibility Pack for Office 2007  


Please note only one version of Office can be installed on a desktop.

If you want to read more technical information then this can be found on Microsoft’s TechNet site 2.


When will we be in a position to upgrade to a 64-bit version of Office?

There are no plans in place at the moment to move to a 64-bit version of Office as the advantages it offers may only benefit a very limited number of users and cause a larger number of users significant issues.




Written by IT Services. Latest revision 15 October 2018