Software News

O365 Display Name Change

Friday, Feb. 19 OIT will change users’ Microsoft O365 display names to appear as Firstname Lastname. Currently O365 display names show as Lastname, Firstname.

This change will adopt the preferred names set in the UA Common Directory, and will overwrite some previously set directory values if individuals have customized the display name of an email account.

The change may take time to refresh on all O365 apps (Outlook, Teams). OIT is performing this change to make the O365 environment more user friendly, and consistent with other campus services.

Student Email Migration to O365

Exciting news! In May 2021 OIT will be migrating student Crimson email accounts from Google to Microsoft. We’re doing this for several reasons, to enhance cybersecurity, to provide a cohesive directory, to increase collaboration with tools like Microsoft Teams, and to better prepare UA students for the workforce. Visit our migration webpage for more information and answers to frequently asked questions like, “Will my email address stay the same?” Ok, we’ll go ahead and answer that one: yes.

Crimson Migration

LifeLock with Norton – Personal Machines Only

As a part of the benefits package offered to faculty and staff, The University of Alabama offers identity theft protection from LifeLock with Norton.

This service provides enrollees with identity protection and credit monitoring as well as Norton 360 antivirus software. Enrollees are permitted to use the Norton 360 antivirus software on personal machines only. University machines are protected with McAfee antivirus software which will not work effectively alongside Norton antivirus software.

If you have installed Norton 360 on a University machine please work with IT support in your area to remove the software. Additionally, Norton 360 customers may contact member services at 800-607-9174 for assistance removing the software. Dedicated Norton agents are available 8am-6pm CST for assistance.

Box Update – Jan. 7

On Thursday, Jan. 7 OIT will be enabling the new Box user interface for all UA students, faculty and staff. The new interface features a sleek design and provides users with the ability to better organize content. Learn more on the Box website.

OIT to Implement Microsoft Safe Links

Monday, Nov. 30, OIT will implement Microsoft Advanced Threat Protection Safe Links for OIT-supported faculty and staff mailboxes across campus. Safe Links is a tool that can help users better detect malicious links and phishing emails. Safe Links scans incoming emails for malicious hyperlinks, and lets users know the real URL of a link. Learn more about Safe Links, and see examples of Safe Links on the OIT website.

OIT has tested Safe Links for several months with all OIT employees and customers from different divisions and departments across campus.

OIT Completes Mailbox Migration to O365 Cloud


This week the Office of Information Technology will complete its Microsoft O365 mailbox migration project. The migration, announced in February, was briefly put on hold in March while the University transitioned to remote work; however, the project resumed in May and picked up speed throughout the summer.

“We were hesitant to make any change during March or April that could disrupt faculty and staff access to email,” said Deputy CIO Mike Shelton. “Because of our remote work environment, we knew everyone was depending on email now more than ever.”

OIT resumed the project in May by migrating the College of Engineering, and the project did not slow down until last week after each college and division supported by OIT was migrated.

“The success of this project shows the effectiveness of remote work and the robust power of cloud technology,” said Shelton. “Our team migrated well over 12,000 mailboxes this summer – all from their homes.”

OIT encourages faculty and staff to take advantage of additional applications and software components partnered with an O365 account. Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, Planner and Stream are just a few of the applications available at  All Microsoft applications, including Teams, is also available to students.

“Teams has been our number one tool the past six months,” said Shelton. “We use Teams to coordinate projects, host meetings and chat with coworkers.”

Microsoft Teams provides a chat space for colleagues to share ideas through threaded chats and integrated video and voice conversations. Each team has its own collaboration space, OneDrive cloud storage and shared calendar. Learn more about Microsoft Teams on the OIT website.

A separate project is underway to migrate the Division of Finance and Operations email accounts to the UA OIT O365 cloud environment. Finance and Operations employees will receive direct notification from OIT with further information about this project.

Hosting email in the cloud offers many benefits including business continuity, infrastructure cost savings, real-time updates without system downtime, and email accessibility anywhere with an internet connection. Learn more about the O365 mailbox migration project, and see answers to frequently asked questions, on the OIT website.